CapFriendly: NY Islanders projected to have the third oldest team in NHL

New York Islanders v Carolina Hurricanes - Game One
New York Islanders v Carolina Hurricanes - Game One / Jaylynn Nash/GettyImages

The New York Islanders are not old, just older.

Based on CapFriendly's 20-man projected rosters, the Islanders now have the 3rd oldest team in the league at an average age of 29.0. That number would go up if 38-year-old Zach Parise decides to return for his third season on Long Island. The Bob Nystrom Award winner is not currently listed on the CapFriendly depth chart as he mulls retirement and is an unrestricted free agent.

The team's average age at the end of the 2021-22 season was 29.4, meaning it is slightly down from two seasons ago when aging defensemen Andy Greene and Zdeno Chara were on the roster. However, at the start of last season, they had the fifth-oldest depth chart at 28.6, so it's ticked up slightly as the calendar has turned for several core players that remain with the team.

While the Isles have the third oldest projected roster in the NHL, it's also the third oldest in the Metropolitan Division, as both the Washington Capitals (29.6) and Pittsburgh Penguins (31.1) are older. In fact, of the top-10 projected oldest teams, five reside in the Metro, with the New York Rangers (28.4) and Carolina Hurricanes (28.4) also among the league's oldest.

The Islanders' 20-man depth chart includes eight players that are 30 years of age or older after J-G Pageau and Scott Mayfield played their final seasons in their 20s last year. The entire 'Identity Line' of Casey Cizkas (32), Matt Martin (34), and Cal Clutterbuck (35), the team's oldest player, are in their thirties along with forwards Brock Nelson (31), Kyle Palmieri (32) and Anders Lee (33).

The blueline remains the youngest part of the Isles lineup. After Mayfield, all the defensemen are in their 20's, with Adam Pelech (28) and Ryan Pulock (28) being the oldest. Noah Dobson and Alexander Romanov are both 23 years old, and Sebastian Aho is 27. Samuel Bolduc, who will battle for Aho for the sixth defenseman position, is also 23.

Between the pipes, Semyon Varlamov returns on a new four-year contract that will take him just shy of 40 years old, while Vezina runner-up Ilya Sorokin is set to turn 28 in August.