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Mathew Barzal Inks Eight-Year, $73.2 Million Extension with New York

Photos by James Carey Lauder and Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Mathew Barzal Inks Eight-Year, $73.2 Million Extension with New York

Mathew Barzal and the New York Islanders have agreed to terms on an eight-year contract worth $73.2 million. The deal features an annual average value of $9.15 million, which will kick in following the 2022-23 season.

“There’s so much excitement,” Barzal said of his new contract. “It’s one of those days you’re never going to forget. I called my parents last night when I got done, and anytime your mom’s got a tear in her eye, it means you’ve either done something really good or something really bad. It’s a special day for me and my family.”

The 25-year-old is in the final season of a three-year, $21 million contract that has seen him make $7 million each of the past two years. Barzal put up 15 goals and 59 points last year in 75 games, and knows he will need to step up his game going forward. As does his general manager, Lou Lamoriello.

“I’m a fan because Mat has the ability to raise his game and to be a special player,” Lamoriello said. “And now, with this contract and our faith in him, [it] puts that responsibility on him. We’re trusting that. It’s up to him to respond to that.”

Through five years, Barzal has remained atop the Isles’ scoring leaderboard, but this past season, however, he did experience a slight drop-off in production – much along the lines of his teammates. Through 362 career regular season contests, the 16th overall pick in the 2015 NHL Draft has put up 91 goals and 311 points. Barzal also has an additional 13 goals and 38 points in 49 playoff games.

“I want to be the best player I can be, and be one of the top players in the league and be that guy for this organization,” Barzal said. “I think it really comes down to just winning.”

No longer needing to go out and prove his future worth on a daily basis in what would have been a ‘contract year’, Barzal is looking forward to relaxing and rediscovering his top game over the course of the coming season, knowing that his contract has already been sorted out.

According to Lamoriello, the decision to sign the long-term extension worked well for both sides.

“When you have someone that you’ve drafted, he plays his whole career here, certainly it is something special,” Lamoriello said. “It’s very special to the fans. It’s a message to the fans that this is a great location to play when a player like (Barzal) makes that decision.”

The Islanders begin play in the 2022-23 season on Thursday, October 13, when the team hosts the league’s top team from last season, the Florida Panthers.

Carter Brooks - Associate Editor of Game On Magazine - is a news writer and sports columnist situated in Winnipeg, MB. On top of reading and writing, his favourite pastimes include camping, car-modification projects and coaching hockey. Carter can be reached at carterbrooks1994@gmail.com or on Twitter at @GameOnHockey.

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