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Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Isles waive DiPietro

After a beginning (and a middle) with a lot of pomp and circumstance, the end came in one line on a transaction list from the team's official website:
"July 2: Islanders place Rick DiPietro on unconditional waivers."

"July 2: Islanders extend qualifying offers to forwards Josh Bailey, Brett Gallant, David Ullstrom, defensemen Travis Hamonic, Thomas Hickey and goaltender Kevin Poulin."

And just like that, the 15 year, 67.5M contract was done.

As it turns out, DiPietro, who will turn 32 in September, was paid $31.5M for the seven years that have passed since he was signed in September 2006.  He will also be paid $1.5M for the next sixteen years under the compliance buyout, which will not count towards the Islanders' cap.  All totaled, the Isles will have paid DiPietro $55.5M under this contract.

DiPietro's contract was the longest in NHL history when it was signed, surpassing the 10-year contract signed by then-teammate Alexei Yashin.  Yashin's contract was also bought out; there are still two years at $2.204M remaining on that buyout.
What's next for DiPietro?  He is certainly still young enough to try and rebuild his career if he is healthy enough and willing to spend time in the AHL (or ECHL) and hope for another chance.  After all,  Tim Thomas turned 32 in April 2006 after splitting the year with Providence and the Bruins.  Thomas did not get his big money deal with Boston until the summer after he turned 35.

DiPietro won only 14 games in his last five seasons with the Isles.  His most recent NHL victory came on December 3, 2011 in Dallas; DiPietro was pulled from that game with a 5-4 lead after two periods.  Al Montoya "saved" the win, which was the 130th for DiPietro as an Islander.

DiPietro finishes his Isles career with:
318 games played (2nd to Billy Smith)
130 wins (3rd behind Smith and Resch)
136 losses (2nd to Smith)
36 ties/OT losses (3rd to Smith and Resch)
16 shutouts (3rd to Smith and Resch)
2.87 GAA (6th among Isles goalies who have played at least 80 games)

The Islanders had five $4m+ players in the organization last season.  DiPietro joins Tim Thomas and Mark Streit as those who will not return in 2013-14; John Tavares and Lubomir Visnovsky are the others.

Based on capgeek, the Isles have committed $32.3M to next year's cap (including Yashin's buyout).

Also on that transaction list today:

"July 2: Islanders extend qualifying offers to forwards Josh Bailey, Brett Gallant, David Ullstrom, defensemen Travis Hamonic, Thomas Hickey and goaltender Kevin Poulin."


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick, statistician on Islander home telecasts since January 21, 1982. Visit my blog: NYISkinny.com and follow me on Twitter @ehornick

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