The New York Islanders have reportedly agreed to a four-year deal with forward Matt Martin and it carries a $1.5 million annual value.
The reports also indicate that the deal also carries a $1.5 million AAV. That’s a $1 million drop from the last deal he signed the last time he was a UFA on the market. Then Toronto Maple Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello signed Martin to a four year $10 million deal ($2.5 million AAV).
This deal will certainly keep Matt Martin on the Island for the remainder of his NHL career.
Martin, who turned 31 in May, will be 35 by the time this reported deal comes to a close. A physical player who isn’t shy to drop the gloves if the situation requires it, Matt Martin isn’t a candidate to have Jaromir Jagr-esque longevity in the NHL.
The deal comes as a surprise specifically for the team and value. We knew that Matt Martin had been re-signed by the Islanders but most of us thought that his contract would be for a single year and carry an AAV of $1 million, at most.
With the Islanders right up against the salary cap, giving Matt Martin that kind of money seems a bit odd. But then again, the Isles need to chew up some cap space in order to maximize the amount of Johnny Boychuk‘s $6 million LTIR salary they can use.
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So perhaps this explains why the Islanders made the deal. It’s clear the Islanders like Matt Martin and he likes being here. Keeping him makes sense in a way. The Isles draw their identity from the fourth line of Martin-Cizikas-Clutterbuck. When that trio isn’t there the team isn’t the same team.