Uniondale, NY – The New York Islanders have officially parted ways with Rick DiPietro, announcing Wednesday the use of a compliance buyout on the often-injured goaltender's contract.
"It was an extremely tough decision to use the compliance buyout on Rick's contract," Islanders general manager Garth Snow said in a statement. "His drive to win games and compete at the highest level for the New York Islanders was never questioned. With Rick back at 100 percent health, we wish him nothing but the best as he continues to pursue his career."
In what turned out to be a misguided move, the Islanders signed DiPietro to a 15-year, $67 million contract in the summer of 2006. Under the buyout terms, the team rids themselves of his $4.5 million cap hit, but the 31-year-old will receive two-thirds of the $36 million he's owed over twice the length of the remaining eight years of the contract. In other words, the club will give him $1.5 million a year until 2029.
DiPietro was unable to live up to his potential as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2000 draft. He showed flashes at times, but a litany of injuries interrupted his 12-year career. DiPietro has played in just 50 games since the start of the 2008-09 season and finished the truncated 2013 campaign with Bridgeport of the American Hockey League.
The Massachusetts native compiled a 130-136-28 record with eight ties in 318 career games with the Islanders.