Parker Wotherspoon received a qualifying offer from the New York Islanders, but he’ll take a two-year extension with a decrease in NHL salary and an increase in AHL salary rather than accept a one-year raise. CapFriendly reports that the Islanders have come to terms on a new two-way deal with the young defenseman. Wotherspoon is set to make the minimum $700K at the NHL level this year and $750K in the NHL next year for an AAV of $725K. In the AHL, he will earn $100K ($125K total guaranteed) in 2020-21 and $125K ($185K total guaranteed) in 2021-22.
Wotherspoon, 23, is coming off his entry-level contract with three productive AHL seasons under his belt. In fact, the mobile defenseman’s point total has improved year over year. His 27 points in 2019-20 was good enough for fourth among all skaters for the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. He also set a career high in penalty minutes as his 6’2″ frame has been put to good use with a more physical presence.
With the departure of Devon Toews and the possibility of more moves on the Islanders blue line, Wotherspoon’s odds of an NHL opportunity have improved, even if New York still has a deep group of defensemen. Given his consistent offense and pro size, Wotherspoon has earned a shot if he can get one. With five defensemen signed to one-way contracts, RFA Ryan Pulock expected to re-sign, and prospects Noah Dobson and Sebastian Aho likely ahead of him in the pecking order, Wotherspoon will need some luck for chances to open up, but once they do he could prove himself as an NHL-ready player.