Martin and Clutterbuck have no plans to retire; want to remain home with NY Islanders

Mar 26, 2016; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders forward Cal Clutterbuck (15) celebrates his 3rd
Mar 26, 2016; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders forward Cal Clutterbuck (15) celebrates his 3rd / James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

The decision as to whether Matt Martin and Cal Clutterbuck remain with the New York Islanders is no theirs to make, but on Friday they let their intentions known. They both want to play, and want to continue their careers on Long Island, the place they'll call home whether they're in the NHL or not.

“The retirement narrative was certainly not something I started,” said Martin at Friday's media availability. "I plan to play next year. My future is unknown at the moment, but that’ll sort itself out.”

Martin is at 955 career games, 45 away from the 1,000-game milestone that was achieved by Clutterbuck during the 2023-24 season. He has appeared in 82 post-season games for the team, but missed Games 4 and 5 versus Carolina with a lower-body injury. He turns 35 next week.

As for Clutterbuck, he is coming off a season where he played in all 82 games, showing he can still be durable despite being 36 years old and playing a physical game. After hitting the 1,000 game milestone this year, he went on to become the first player in NHL history to record 4,000 career hits.

“I’d love to play and obviously I’d love to play here,” Clutterbuck said. “This has been home for a very long time. I put a lot into my time here and had great experiences. I will be an Islander for life.”

Clutterbuck later joked (we think) that even if he weren't back with the team, he'd still be around. "I just feel like this place is my second home. So, even if I were to call it quits, I live here. It's my home," he stated. "I'll be popping in here once in a while, you know, just to give Barzy s**t or use the gym, or whatever. I'll be around."

The fanbase will always be appreciative of Clutterbuck and Martin, but it will be the hardest fo sells for Lamoriello to bring them back on short-term deals and explain why the team can still be better next year and in the future. While neither player's salary cap hit is prohibitive, there are some internal options in the bottom-six that could warrant and look if there are openings made available.