Islanders captain John Tavares could've signed an extension with the Islanders at noon on Saturday when free agency began, but he is not yet ready to commit, reports Art Staple of Newsday.
The eight-year, $106 million deal Connor McDavid is reportedly close to signing with the Oilers is one of the factors delaying a resolution between the Islanders and Tavares.
"With all the leverage in any negotiations with the Islanders, given how clearly the team has made it that they want Tavares locked up, an eight-year deal worth between $10-11 million per year always seemed like the end result." writes Staple.
"Now that Connor McDavid's likely deal at $13.25 million per has leaked out, no doubt Brisson and Tavares are taking a cautious approach. Despite McDavid being seven years younger and already a Hart Trophy winner, Tavares is not going to take significantly less than another star in the league."
McDavid's deal was announced on Wednesday, coming in at $12.5 million per season.
It was reported last month by Darren Dreger of TSN that Tavares was more willing to wait on an extension with the Islanders.
Since then, the Islanders have acquired Jordan Eberle from the Oilers in exchange for Ryan Strome.
Tavares and his agent, Pat Brisson, reportedly felt more comfortable with the general direction of the Islanders, from their new home to what their plans are to build the team into a contender.
The 26-year-old Tavares notched 28 goals and 38 assists in 77 games for the Islanders last season. He is set to earn $6 million this coming season, after which he is eligible to become an unrestricted free agent.