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Islanders Quietly Make First Two Free Agency Signings

CALGARY, AB - OCTOBER 17: Austin Czarnik #27 of the Calgary Flames in action against the Detroit Red Wings during an NHL game at Scotiabank Saddledome on October 17, 2019 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images)
CALGARY, AB - OCTOBER 17: Austin Czarnik #27 of the Calgary Flames in action against the Detroit Red Wings during an NHL game at Scotiabank Saddledome on October 17, 2019 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images) /
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Last night, the New York Islanders made their first two signings of the free agency period. They signed Grant Hutton and Austin Czarnik to deals.

With all of the New York Islanders news last night focused on the trade that sent Devon Toews to the Colorado Avalanche in exchange for two draft picks and the rumored signing of Cory Schneider to a one-year deal, the Islanders did in fact make more moves.

The Islanders re-signed defenseman Grant Hutton and they also signed forward

Austin Czarnik

, who was most recently with the Calgary Flames. Both American players signed two-year deals with the Islanders organization.

Grant Hutton Provides Stability to Bridgeport’s Blue Line

The Hutton move is purely one that will impact Bridgeport and it is highly unlikely that we will see him with the Islanders, but you never know. Injuries do happen and if Hutton can solidify himself as Bridgeport’s number one defenseman, it could in fact happen.

Hutton’s first full professional season was the 2019-2020 season with the Sound Tigers. He played in 55 games where he had six goals, fifteen assists, -5 plus/minus, and amassed 31 penalty minutes.

Before joining the Islanders organization, Hutton attended and played four years at the University of Miami (Ohio). He was named a captain his senior season and was undrafted.

Czarnik is an interesting depth move

Just like Hutton, before playing professional hockey, Czarknik attended the University of Miami (Ohio), but graduated before Hutton attended the school. He was a two-year captain of the Red Hawks.

Czarnik has some valuable NHL experience. Back in the 2016-2017 season, Czarnik played 49 games with the Boston Bruins. Had had five goals and eight assists with the Bruins.

Besides that one season where he played a majority of games with Boston, Czarnik has been playing mostly in the minors, while getting called up for a minimal number of games with the NHL squad.

In his AHL career, he has averaged 0.99 points per game, with 188 points in 189 games. He is definitely someone that can step in with the Islanders and provide a boost but will also be a major asset to the Sound Tigers.

The Czarnik deal will be a $725,000 cap hit for the Islanders and he will be eligible in the Seattle expansion draft.

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It is expected that the Islanders will be making some major deals in the coming days and some could be happening as early as today.

Must Read. Islanders: Thomas Greiss signs with Detroit Red Wings

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