The New York Islanders have signed recently acquired forward Bo Horvat to a new deal before the center has ever played a game for the team. After being traded by the Vancouver Canucks to the Islanders in a deal just ahead of the All-Star break, Horvat headed to Florida donning the Islanders uniform but he had still yet to meet most of his teammates. Committing to the team before doing so, Horvat inked a long-term extension worth $8.5 million per season.
Lou Lamoriello made an odd comment after signing the forward. According to Stefan Rosner, the GM noted, “It’s too long and it’s too much money.” This wasn’t so much a shot at the player but more the state of the NHL where it takes these kinds of deals to lock someone of Horvat’s caliber up. Horvat is a legitimate top-six center with a strong finishing ability, especially on the powerplay. He’s a smart and well-rounded offensive player. It can be argued that this season may be the best he ever has and that it’s an outlier from the rest of his NHL career, but he’s potting these career-high numbers at the right time.
Lamoriello said after the trade it was important to get going on contract talks as soon as possible. He wasn’t kidding. While he might not like the contract, it was clear he liked the player and wanted to get this deal done so it wasn’t a distraction over the course of the remainder of this season as the Islanders make a push for the playoffs.
Mathew Barzal said of the Horvat acquisition, “We haven’t had a spark like this for a while.”
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February 6, 2023 at 4:26 pm
It is too long and too much money.
LOOK at his stats. In 9 seasons he’s cracked 30 goals twice, including this “contract year”. The year in which players put some extra effort into their game to try and win a bigger contract for next year.
Think Louie Eriksson and JT Miller who had awesome “contract years” and then dropped back well below that level after signing a new deal.
Bo has scored 200 goals in 600 games. Despite what some “writers” think, that isn’t what qualifies as a “gifted scorer”.
But the talent in the NHL is so watered down now that a 30 goal scorer is “top tier”.
Wasn’t that long ago that scoring 30 goals in a season would have ranked you around 67th overall.
That was back in the days where scoring 100 points would have left you at 21st in the scoring race.
You know, back before goalies gear was regulated. Before carbon fibre sticks. Before the big crackdown on hooking, holding, tripping. When every team had a goon to go after the other team’s star players or to fight their goon when he goes after your stars.
Makes you wonder how today’s top players would have managed back then. Especiall the way a lot of them whine and dive so often it makes you wonder if you are watching hockey or soccer.