Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Streit Signs Five-Year Deal with Isles

TSN is reporting that the Islanders have signed defenseman Mark Streit to a five-year contract worth $20.5 million.

I guess Garth Snow really didn't want to tip his hand on this one. With all the talk of Hainsey and McCabe, Streit never seemed like a realistic possibility. That's what's great about days like this: the really pleasant surprises.

As mentioned by Greg Logan on his Newsday blog, Streit put up as many points from the blue line as Brian Campbell did last year.

Streit will be 31 years old in December, so perhaps it was the length of the contract that put the Islanders' bid over the top. But in comparison to the Campbell contract, the Isles could get great value out of this deal.

One column from this past January speculated that Streit's worth was around $2 million per season. The Islanders are sure to receive some criticism for paying him twice that amount.

However, this was one of those situations where if the GM really wants the player (and it appears that Snow did), he has to do what is necessary to get the player. It's the same reasoning that justified the Mets giving Pedro Martinez a fourth year.

Streit, from Switzerland, has played only three seasons in the NHL. But his adjustment to the league has been swift. He has gone from 11 points (in 48 games) to 36 points in 2006-07 to 62 points this past year. He posted 34 points on the power play for the Canadiens in 2007-08 (7 goals, 27 assists).

Before joining Montreal for the 2005-06 season, Streit did accumulate some experience with North American minor league hockey. In 1999-00, he made appearances in all three of the ECHL, IHL, and AHL.

It's worth noting that Streit has seen some time as a forward and I don't have a breakdown of how that may have influenced his offensive production. But here are some varying opinions from a thread on Yahoo! Answers.

Keep an eye here for more of the official word on the signing from the Islanders.

Mark Streit's career stats, courtesy of hockeydb.com.

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