News broke late Monday afternoon that the New York Islanders have signed Restricted Free Agents Michael Dal Colle and Josh Ho-Sang to new deals. Islanders beat reporter Andrew Gross tweeted the initial announcement earlier. Dal Colle’s is for two years, $700,000 per season. Ho-Sang’s is for one year and just over $870,000.
#Isles announce RFA Fs Michael Dal Colle and Josh Ho-Sang have agreed to deals. Anthony Beauvillier the last RFA left.
— Andrew Gross (@AGrossNewsday) August 19, 2019
Islanders Sign Dal Colle and Josh Ho-Sang
Signing these two young forwards was one of the few things New York had left to do as we approach training camp. Neither was used much in the 2018-19, but they are definite building blocks for the team’s future. Dal Colle scored three goals and seven points in 28 games last season, while Ho-Sang chipped in two points in 10 games. Both will play on the bottom-six as New York seeks to remain competitive in the improving Metropolitan division.
Both could factor heavily into the team’s plans depending on what they do this season. Dal Colle and Ho-Sang were drafted in the first round of the 2014 NHL Draft and possess top-six upside. However, time is starting to run out as they risk falling behind more recent draftees. Ho-Sang, in particular, needs to demonstrate that he can be a productive Islander or he could be traded before next summer. Dal Colle’s longer deal means the organization has given him slightly more slack to make something of himself.
What this Means for the Future
As already stated, New York is giving short deals to two of their prospects so they can prove their value either as NHL players or trade pieces. The team does have several big potential deals looming next summer including Mathew Barzal, Ryan Pulock and Thomas Greiss. Flippling Ho-Sang at some point would clear up some cap space to put towards the 2019-20 offseason. Or even more importantly, a potential roster spot if Josh Ho-Sang can’t seem to hang in the NHL.
The team has one remaining Restricted Free Agent in 22-year-old Anthony Beauvillier. They also have just under $8 million in cap space should they chose to bring someone else in to compete for a roster spot.