New York Islanders: Giving Ryan Pulock An Extension
By Matt O'Leary
The New York Islanders have a lot of expiring contracts this offseason, one of them being young defenseman Ryan Pulock.
Ryan Pulock has been a polarizing player since the New York Islanders drafted him with the 15th pick in 2013. He’s played much better of late and since he’s a restricted free agent at the end of the season.
I posed this question on Twitter the other day and here’s how fans feel about giving Ryan Pulock a long-term deal:
An overwhelming majority feel comfortable giving him a long-term deal after his rookie season. 76 percent said to lock him up for a long-term deal while only 24 percent did not feel comfortable doing it at this time.
Part of it could be his play of late. In his last 10 games, Ryan Pulock has nine points. In exactly 40 games this year Pulock has 18 points (5 goals, 13 assists). If you want to use those numbers as a full season pace you can assume that he could finish a full 82 game season with 36 points (10 goals, 26 assists).
The Islanders haven’t had two defensemen with 30 plus points since 2014-2015 when Nick Leddy, Johnny Boychuk, and Travis Hamonic all had 30 or more points.
Locking Ryan Pulock up on a long-term deal can be beneficial for this team going forward. We talked a little about this at the live podcast last week. One of the members of the audience came up with an idea that I personally love.
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It’s a little risky but would be amazing for the Islanders if everything broke right. Most extensions for RFA’s are for four or five years. If the Islanders did this with Pulock that’d make him a UFA at age 27 or 28 which you’d assume would yield him a big payday.
What if the Islanders did something unorthodox and extended the years and maybe the AAV for the early part of the contract? What if it was something like eight-years with a cap hit of $4 million per year?
For the next year or two, you might be overpaying him but if he is any semblance of the player the Isles drafted to be that’s a steal and a half.
Think about it. The Isles could have Ryan Pulock under control at $4 million a year through age 31. That way you get him at the most productive point of his career on the cheap, while also enticing him to sign with the overall sum of the contract.
At 23 years old it’d be pretty difficult to turn down $32 million. Again, any long-term extension is a big risk but if you think he’s a part of your team’s future why not lock him up on a team friendly deal?
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A top-four defenseman locked up for eight years at $4 million a year? It’s a win for both parties but I’d be extremely shocked if Pulock got this kind of extension in the summer. History has proved Garth Snow and I are rarely on the same page.