Islanders’ Tavares a future free agent?

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John Tavares is entering the final year of his six-year, $33 million contract. He turns 27 years old in later this month. Tavares was the first overall pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft and has recorded at least 24 goals in each of his eight seasons, including the lockout-shortened year in 2013.

So why bring him up?

NBCSN’s Pierre McGuire hinted recently that Buffalo could be a good fit for Tavares, who may very well enter the season without a contract extension. While Jack Eichel may also be doing the same, it appears that Tavares’ future is a bit more clouded. The Sabres are going to give Eichel whatever he wants, but the Islanders may have a tougher time doing so with their captain.

IF Tavares does not sign a contract extension with the Islanders by July 1, 2018, he would then become a free agent. The superstar has already posted incredible numbers, but arguably hasn’t even entered the prime of his career. The Islanders probably won’t let him slip away for nothing, but if Tavares does want to test the market, there’s not much New York would be able to do.

“The organization and my teammates know me well enough and how much I enjoy playing here and my commitment to the team” – Tavares

These rumors have been mentioned before, but the longer Tavares goes without a new contract, the bigger of a deal he will become.

While it may not lead to Tavares ending up in blue and gold, it’s something to keep an eye on this season.

Kevin Freiheit
Kevin Freiheit
I founded Buffalo Hockey Central in 2008 and have poured hours and hours into this site. Luckily, we have a great team of writers and designers who have helped keep this up and running despite a ton of out-of-pocket costs. We do this because we enjoy it, and we're desperate to see the Sabres win the Cup someday, but they have to make the playoffs first.
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