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Will Dan Boyle Sign with the New York Islanders?

What's known about his desires, what's speculated about his options

The pitch: You wouldn't have to chase Grabner, you wouldn't have to pair with Murray.
The pitch: You wouldn't have to chase Grabner, you wouldn't have to pair with Murray.
Ezra Shaw

Once the dust settled on the Thursday afternoon trade of Dan Boyle to the New York Islanders, this is how the natural next question filtered around:

And then in Newsday:

George Bazos, Boyle's agent, said he and Boyle had brief conversations with Snow and Boyle would be educating himself on the Islanders in the coming days.

"Dan wants to talk to some people who know the Islanders organization," Bazos said. "He made it pretty clear to me he's open to any and all options."

Also, at IPB:

Bazos said that his client will do some research to get a comfort level with the Islanders.

"Right now there’s a lot research and work to be done on both sides," he said. "He would be excited as much with the Islanders as with any other team at this point."

It's known going in that he is seeking a two-year deal, something the payroll-heavy Sharks were unwilling to give him. But there was also this, back in May, when it became clear the Sharks would be moving on from what some call the best defenseman in their franchise history:


"It’s definitely tough, but it’s exciting at the same time. It’s a confusing time, but it is what it is. It’s a business, and at the end of the day, things happen.

"I’m obviously crushed and hurt with what’s happened, but I’m a competitor. I want to win the Stanley Cup. That’s what I’m excited about. I’m looking forward to the next opportunity."

So he wants to go to a contender, but he also recognizes it's a business. Hence, he's of an open mind and doing some research on the Isles right now.

One question he and his agent must consider, now that the preferred situation is gone: What "contenders" or near-contenders are needing a defenseman like him to get over the hump? (Aside from the Sharks, I mean.) St. Louis? Pittsburgh? Boston? Tampa Bay?

Of those and others, which ones can fit him under the cap, and are willing to offer two years?

The Islanders, at least by cap space, can afford to pay a premium to woo Boyle. But otherwise, despite Boyle's "decline" the last two seasons, there should be a number of teams willing to take him if he's willing to be flexible. It seems a bit of a longshot for the Isles, but it's worth a try -- and it's a try they likely wouldn't have had if they began the push while even with 29 other teams on July 1.

Aging Western PP Point Giants?

Oh, one other note: Is this just insurance for Lubomir Visnovsky if his health doesn't recover from 2013-14 concussion injuries? No, not necessarily:

A plus, yes you could say that.