Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Islanders Notes: Persson, Matthias?

John Persson, a 2011 draft pick of the New York Islanders, will be playing with Farjestad of the Swedish Elite League, effectively ending his association with the New York Islanders and Bridgeport Sound Tigers, as reported by Lighthouse Hockey. Persson, a native of Sweden, played in 10 games with the Islanders at the NHL level in 2013-14, notching a goal. He spent the majority of 2013-14 with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, putting up 16 points in 46 games. In 54 games in 2014-15, purely at the AHL level with Bridgeport, he notched 21 points. In returning home, Persson reportedly signed a two year deal with Farjestad. The 22 year-old forward's entry-level contract with New York expired at the end of this season. John will be joining his brother Johan who also plays in the SEL with Farjestad.

In looking at the Islanders needs for next season, Newsday's Arthur Staple notes that a winger to join John Tavares on the first line as a consistent line mate may be in order, if not a high priority. One forward's name bantered around was Shawn Matthias, who was with the Vancouver Canucks last season, but becomes a UFA on July 1 if not re-signed before then. The 27 year-old forward scored a strong 18 goals in 78 games for Vancouver this past season. Matthias earned $1.75 million for 2014-15, and if the Isles could get him for an annual number not much above that, it would be a win for them.

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