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Bailey and Islanders come to terms

Friday, 09.16.2011 / 8:54 AM / NHL Free Agency 2011

NHL.com

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Bailey and Islanders come to terms
Just hours after signing John Tavares to a six-year contract Thursday, the New York Islanders came to terms with 2008 first-round pick Josh Bailey.

ESPNNewYork.com says the deal is for two years and $2.1 million.

Bailey, the ninth pick in the draft three years ago, had 11 goals and 28 points in 70 games with the Islanders last season, his third in the NHL, and has 34 goals and 88 points in 211 NHL games. He also played 11 games with the Isles’ AHL affiliate in Bridgeport last season, piling up 17 points.

With training camp opening Friday morning with player physicals, Bailey, a restricted free agent who declined to sign his qualifying offer earlier this summer, faced a tough ultimatum. Per Islanders team policy, any player unsigned by the start of camp will not be signed -- and the team retains his rights.

It’s a strategy the Islanders have used before, with Sean Bergenheim in 2006. Bergenheim was unwilling to accept what the Islanders were offering him; the Islanders refused to budge and he was forced to play the 2006-07 season in Europe before rejoining the team the following season.

The Islanders signed Tavares, the top pick in the 2009 draft, to a six-year, $33 million deal that will keep him on Long Island through 2017-18.

Quote of the Day

He seemed to thrive on his own and didn't really need any push from me. I certainly don't want to get in the way of the coaches. You see how that goes sometimes. I never really worried about it and just enjoyed the ride.

— David Ekblad on his son's [Aaron Ekblad] journey to the NHL, signing with the Florida Panthers