Before acquiring JG Pageau at the 2020 trade deadline, the New York Islanders were very close to swapping Andrew Ladd for Zach Parise. Now, almost two years later a potential reunion once again seems likely, allow me to explain.
After the Stanley Cup came to a close, a buyout window opened for NHL teams. With a NMC, Zach Parise would have to be protected in the upcoming expansion draft for Minnesota but if they buy him out, they could get out of that, and his $7.54 million cap hit for the next four seasons (he’s 36).
It just makes too much sense for them to buy him out. It would save them $5.17 million this year, $1.17 next ear, $166,667 in 2023-2024, and 2024-2025 before it begins to cost just $833,333 against the cap for four seasons.
It’s not pretty but it would still save them $3.3 million over the course of the buyout. With that in mind, Parise seems like a lock to return to Lou Lamoriello, no?
Lou drafted Parise back in 2003 and saw Parise have seven solid years as a member of the Devils before he went to Minnesota and got his mega-contract. While his best days are clearly behind him, a Parise third-line left wing is nothing to scoff at.
Last year in 45 games, he had 18 points (7 goals, 11 assists) which would pace him out to 33 points on a full season. Let’s not forget though, he is just a year removed from a 25 goal season in 69 games and a 28 goal season the year prior.
He wouldn’t cost much, likely a tad more than the veteran minimum or up to $1 million on a one-year deal. And wouldn’t you rather Parise on L3 than Michael Dal Colle or Leo Komarov? I know that I would.
Lee – Barzal – Eberle/Palmieri (depending on expansion draft)
Beauvillier – Nelson – Bailey
Parise – Pageau – Wahlstrom
Martin – Cizikas – Clutterbuck
I’d take that forward group. Plus we already know how much Lou Lamoriello and Barry Trotz too for that matter tend to prefer the veterans to the youth. Well, at least with Parise even at his age there’s still 20 goal upside.
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Parise’s advanced numbers are still favorable as well. He had a 56.9 GF%, a 51.8 SCF%, and a 59.7 HDCF% according to Natural Stat Trick. He can still play, would be cheap, and seems like a Lou and Barry guy. Honestly, too many things add up for me not to believe that Parise will be an Islander if he’s bought out.