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Islanders Free Agency Day News: The roster will change significantly

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The free agent names are flying, and the Islanders hoped to be on top while saying goodbye to some loyal friends.

New York Islanders v Columbus Blue Jackets
Hopefully he forgot how easy Oct. 6, 2017 was.
Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images

By the time you read this, the news of Artemi Panarin’s decision may already be out.

If you were following Twitter updates last night — or delving into our “Islanders the favorite” or Free Agency Tracker posts — then you know signs pointed south, north, and even with a brief desperate deviation to the Midwest on what the highly sought Russian winger was considering.

But as things closed on Sunday night’s Free Agency Eve, here’s how it looked:

UPDATE: And Monday morning...

If it happens, it’s gonna cost the Islanders. But on the bright side they will not have Sergei Bobrovsky for seven years at around $10 million, which was the reported deal he’s going to get from the Panthers. Way too long and way too much for my liking with a goalie who will be 31 to start that deal.

Anyway, Anders Lee and Robin Lehner were expected elsewhere {sad emojis}, while Valtteri Filppula was reportedly connected to the Oilers under his old Wings boss Ken Holland. Sounds like Captain Lee is about to get PAID:

You can follow along through the NHL’s official outlet. NHL Network (U.S.) will air five live hours of NHL Free Agency coverage today, including a simulcast of Sportsnet’s Hockey Central Signing Season at 11 a.m. ET followed by NHL Tonight: Free Agency at 12:30 p.m. ET.

Islanders Reading

  • For much of the day, it seemed either the Panthers or Islanders were in the lead for Panarin, with the Islanders potentially adding the lure of compatriot Semyon Varlamov too. [LHH]
  • Lots in this Elliotte Friedman update, mostly wondering what the Canadiens have planned (7x$8M for Anders Lee?!), but also pouring water on the Blue Jackets’ last-ditch offer for Panarin and saying the Isles were expected to land Panarin and Varlamov. [Sportsnet]

Free Agency Tracker

  • Most of the key news is in this collection of the other names that moved fairly conclusively but not officially last night. Pavelski, Zuccarello, Bobrovsky and many more apparently decided. [LHH]
  • On that note, Dale Tallon tells his team’s official site the Panthers expect a “real positive” day. That means Bobrovsky...but also maybe only Brett Connolly up front. [Panthers]
  • Florida wanted to be rid of James Reimer by trade...so they were able to ship him to Carolina for Scott Darling, whom they bought out. [Canes Country]
  • The Canadiens are expected to be aggressive (offer sheet an RFA too?) in part because their two key players are older and ready to win now. [Athletic]
  • Leaving on a high note: Game 7 OT hero Pat Maroon probably won’t be back with his hometown Blues. [Athletic]
  • More unpacking of the Penguins’ divorce with Phil Kessel, who was used for the Cup rings and then told to scram. [Athletic]

Now What?

That’s about it to start the morning off. Consider this your running free agency thread until we get to put some meat on the burner.