If you were among the many who thought the Islanders gave up too much (Matt Moulson, a first-round pick, and a second-round pick) to get Thomas Vanek from the Sabres, this report from Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston may help explain things:
Sources tell sportsnet.ca that Buffalo has retained 19.5 percent of Vanek’s $6.4-million salary (plus the same portion of his $7.14-million cap hit), which helps explain why the Sabres received first- and second-round picks along with Moulson for Vanek.
New York is among the lowest spenders in the NHL and may have needed part of Vanek’s salary to be held back in order to remain under an internal budget.
Assuming the above information is accurate, the Sabres’ willingness to retain salary will end up saving the Isles around a million bucks. Not a ton of money, relatively speaking. But was it enough to convince the Isles to, say, throw in that second-rounder?
Related: What’s Garth Snow thinking?