According to reports, the Islanders are nearing a deal with young forward John Tavares, while the Sabres are close to signing young Tyler Myers. TSN's Bob McKenzie reported both deals as close to completion and said each is in the six-year range with a average annual salary of $5.5 million.
Both players have one-year remaining on the entry-level deals they signed in 2009.
The Islanders announced a press conference for 1 p.m. Thursday where the team says it will make an announcement regarding Tavares' future with the club.
"It's not something I want hanging over the season and affecting the team," Tavares told Newsday's Arthur Staple after a workout at the Islanders practice facility on Tuesday. "I know I'm going to be here for a long time and I'd like it to get done."
According to Staple, both Garth Snow, the Islanders GM, and Pat Brisson, Tavares' agent, refused to comment on the deal.
The 20-year-old Tavares, the No. 1 pick in 2009, had 29 goals and 67 points in this past season after putting up 24 goals and 58 points as a rookie in 2009-10.
Myers won the 2010 Calder Trophy with an eye-opening 11-goal, 48-point campaign. This past season, Myers struggled early in the season -- a product of trying to do too much, he said recently in a sit-down with NHL.com -- but found his way in the season's second half as the Sabres surged into the playoff picture with a fantastic closing kick.
He finished with 10 goals and added 27 assists and 40 penalty minutes this past season and was Buffalo's best all-round defenseman in the seven-game series against Philadelphia in the First round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Myers was selected in the first round, No. 12, by the Sabres in the 2008 Entry Draft.
We've got to find a way to win a game. He's played well in the minors, now he gets his opportunity. We tried [with Jonathan Bernier]. The way I look at it, you get opportunities and you make the most of it. That's what [James Reimer] did. Now another opportunity is here and Sparks ... you gotta grab it. Is he ready? We'll find out.
— Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock to the Toronto Star on recalling goalie Garret Sparks from the AHL to start Monday in his NHL debut
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