Islanders sign Matthew Barzal for three years

The Islanders and Matthew Barzal have agreed on a three-year contract. Barzal was a restricted free agent and had been unsigned through the first five days of camp. With the Islanders set to open their season Thursday versus the Rangers, this signing couldn’t have come at a better time. The Islanders are up against the salary cap, and making sure Barzal remained with the team was a top priority and led to Devon Toews being traded to the Avalanche for a pair of second-round draft picks.

Barzal is one of the few skilled players on the team and will once again center the top line. Anders Lee and Jordan Eberle will flank him. Barzal had 19 goals and 41 assists in 68 games last season. The Islanders lost the Lightning four games to two in the Eastern Conference Finals and are considered long shots to win the Stanley Cup this season at +2800. They are also +650 to win the east division and even money to make the playoffs.