Islanders re-sign Travis Hamonic

Updated: July 5, 2013, 9:00 PM ET
By Katie Strang | ESPNNewYork.com

The New York Islanders were among the busiest teams in the NHL in the opening hour of free agency, but their most noteworthy move of the day was locking up restricted free agent defenseman Travis Hamonic.

The Islanders signed the 22-year-old Hamonic to a seven-year deal worth $27 million. The deal pays the young blueliner $3.857 million annually.

The team also re-signed goaltender Evgeni Nabokov to a one-year deal. Nabokov's contract is for $3.25 million.

Though Hamonic is just coming off his three-year entry-level deal, the former second-round draft pick (53rd overall, 2008) has emerged as one of the team's most valuable young players.

Hamonic has flourished as a leader on the team's blue line, chipping in with three goals and 10 points in 48 games this season. Along with defensive partner Andrew MacDonald, Hamonic is often employed against opponents' top lines.

The Winnipeg, Manitoba, native was tasked with that responsibility against Sidney Crosby & Co. in the team's first-round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins this spring.

The Islanders were active Friday, re-signing Nabokov and inking free agent forwards Peter Regin and Pierre-Marc Bouchard. The team may still be looking for help on defense as well.

Given the departure of captain Mark Streit, who was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers last month, the Islanders are likely to shore up their blue line either via trade or free agency.

Nabokov played in 41 games in the regular season, compiling a 23-11-7 record with a 2.50 goals-against average.

The Islanders recently bought out goalie Rick DiPietro, leaving only Nabokov and backup Kevin Poulin on the roster.

Regin, a center, got a one-year deal worth $750,000, according to a source. Bouchard signed a one-year, $2 million deal, according to a source.

Information from ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun was used in this report.

Katie Strang covers the NHL for ESPN.com. She is a graduate of Michigan State University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.
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