The New York Islanders are in the final stages of making an offer for goalie Jimmy Howard and have made their first offer of the season, according to a person with knowledge of the negotiations.
The Islanders made their initial offer in the morning and have not been contacted by the New York Rangers, the person said.
Howard, who turns 37 next week, is under contract through the 2019-20 season and has played for the Rangers, Boston Bruins and Columbus Blue Jackets.
The Rangers have shown interest in Howard, but no team has expressed an interest.
In a press conference Thursday, general manager Garth Snow said the Islanders are close to reaching an agreement on Howard and are open to trading him.
He said that team was also exploring a trade with Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf, who has an option to sign with the Ducks this summer.
But Snow said no team in the league has made a move for Howard yet, adding that he is “not ruling anything out” as a potential trade partner.
Howard is set to become a free agent at the end of this season.
The NHL has said it’s trying to keep its rosters as full as possible.
But with the salary cap so high, teams are finding ways to cut costs and move players in hopes of increasing revenue.
Howard’s salary is set at $5.8 million this season and $7.8m next season.
He is coming off a season that saw him finish with the lowest goal-against average in the NHL, 2.21 and the lowest save percentage, .928.