The Islanders were on the verge of re-signing Thomas Hickey last night or they possibly did, but either way, the announcement came down on the start of the frenzy, that the free agent defenseman was signed to a new 3-year deal, worth $6.6 million.
Hickey qualified as being pool worthy last season, picking up 2 goals and 22 points in 81 games for the Islanders last year, which put him in 79th among all defensemen.
It was likely a trying year for the 26-year old, as he was slated to be a top end blueliner for the Islanders before the start of the 2015 season, but the deals that brought Johnny Boychuk and Nick Leddy to town, dropped Hickey on the depth chart and his minutes were somewhat limited.
Now that Hickey has had that year in his new role, I believe he gets more comfortable in it and possibly earns his way into some more power play time. I think with that notion in mind, his numbers are going to see some gains. I have conservatively increased his projections, but if this team continues to improve on paper around him, I think his numbers could improve along with them.