In a not so surprising move, the New York Islanders added both Andrew Ladd and Tom Kuhnhackl to the AHL roster today for training camp. Kuhnhackl is signed to a PTO according to CapFriendly, so the details of the contract and/or savings aren’t out.
The one that will save the Islanders some money is Andrew Ladd. Instead of his $5.5 million cap hit, he will carry a $4.425 million cap figure saving the Isles $1.075 million. That leaves the Isles with $1.27 million in space to use thanks to Johnny Boychuk on LTIR.
Since the start of the 2018 season, Andrew Ladd has only played 30 games in the NHL. With three more years on his deal, including this one, the team was forced to make a decision on him, and burying him was what Lou Lamoriello and company came up with.
Last year, he did spend some time in the AHL playing 34 games and scoring 11 goals with Bridgeport. With the size of Bridgeport’s roster, I’d be surprised if he gets regular minutes for them in 2021.
There’s currently 18 forwards listed on the Training Camp Roster, and even with the Islanders’ obsession with veterans, I find it hard to believe that he would be playing over some of the younger guys who have the potential to develop.
With Ladd, the development is over. He’s 35 years old and trying to extend his hockey career, which may be better suited being loaned out to Europe like we saw the team do with Josh Ho-Sang just this past week.
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Since signing with the Islanders in 2016, Ladd has played 181 games (an average of 45 a season) with 72 points (a pace of 33 over a full 82 game season). With a buyout-proof contract, the Isles are just going to have to wait this one out but the chances of him getting back to playing in the NHL seems fairly slim.