The New York Islanders announced today that John Tavares has signed a six-year contract extension. The deal will go into effect on July 1, 2012 and will run through 2017-18.
Tavares led all Islanders in scoring in each of his first two National Hockey League campaigns. The Islanders’ first overall selection in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft will turn 21 on Sept. 20.
“Over the past two years, John has shown a strong commitment to the Islanders organization and the Long Island community through his efforts both on and off the ice,” said General Manager Garth Snow. “He is a key component to the core of players we’ve decided to build this team around and we couldn’t be happier to ensure that he will be a New York Islander for years to come.”
In 161 career NHL games, Tavares has scored 53 goals and 68 assists for 121 points. The Oakville, ON, native has also represented Canada at the last two World Championships, totaling 16 points (12 goals, four assists) in 14 games.
“I’m thrilled to show the organization and loyal Islanders fans that I want nothing more than to win on Long Island,” Tavares said. “Charles and Garth have both shown a tremendous amount of loyalty towards me, and I look forward to honoring this long-term commitment. This is an exciting team to be a part of right now. We have a group that I feel will contend every year for a championship and I’m privileged to be a part of the Islanders’ future.”
Prior to his professional career, Tavares played in 247 career Ontario Hockey League games over four seasons, compiling 215 goals and 218 assists for 433 points. His 215 tallies set an OHL record for goals in a year, a mark held by Peter Lee for 33 years. In 2007, Tavares was named the Canadian Hockey League Player of the Year, after breaking Wayne Gretzky’s OHL record for goals in a season with 72. Tavares also played in 38 career OHL playoff games, recording 20 goals and 36 assists for a total of 56 points.
Tavares won back-to-back gold medals with Team Canada at the 2008 and 2009 World Junior Championships. He was named the 2009 tournament MVP and World Junior Top Forward. His career World Junior goal total of 12 ties him with fellow Canadians Eric Lindros and Jeff Carter for most goals in a career at the World Junior Championships.