Kyle Palmieri – 4 years, $5 million AAV
It was a tale of two seasons for Long Island native Kyle Palmieri after signing a four-year extension with the Islanders. The prior year he failed to live up to expectations after being traded for a 1st round pick and Travis Zajac at the deadline until the playoffs when his game and beard came back. Last season, he failed to live up to expectations until after the All-Star break, when the Islanders were already too far back to mount a realistic push for the playoffs.
The Islanders started the season with 13 games on the road and Palmieri didn't score a goal in the first 12 of them. While his shooting % would indicate there was some bad puck luck involved, that type of drought for a player counted on to score around 30 goals can't happen.
2021-22 Season: 15 G, 18 A in 69 GP
It was his second-straight season of an 'uncharacteristically' low shooting %. In 2021, his shooting % was 8.7% after six consecutive seasons above 12%. He finished with a shooting % of 9.6% after a very productive second-half.
The turnaround in his game coincided with him becoming his father. Aided by his new "Dad Power" as Noah Dobson said, Palmieri scored 14 goals over his last 40 games, which included a handful of disallowed goals, two happening in the same game.
That scoring pace over a full 82-game season is the type of production the Islanders need to get from Palmieri; otherwise, the $5M AAV with start to look like an anchor on the team's salary cap by the time other expensive contracts start to roll off.