How the Islanders’ deal with Ilya Sorokin unfolded

Ilya Sorokin’s new deal with the Islanders relied on a little bit of faith.

The prized goalie prospect signed a one-year, entry-level contract and a one-year contract extension for the 2020-21 season, the team announced Monday. By signing now, Sorokin can burn this season, which will count toward his service time, and become a restricted free agent after next season.

In order to sign off on that, however, Sorokin had to earn president and general manager Lou Lamoriello’s trust.

“What we had to do was, first of all, have an understanding that he wanted to come [from Russia],” Lamoriello said Tuesday. “And then if we did make a decision to burn a year, then we would, in good faith, be able to sit down and negotiate a fair situation because of his status, his abilities and also with the unknown that he had not yet been here. … I was comfortable with that, with his previous agent and also his present agent.

“He had to play a very big role in that, that he definitely wanted to come or we would not have gone in this direction. We were comfortable that we could get something worked out. You put faith in a person’s word, and trust, and then you go forward, which says a lot about [Sorokin].”

Although he is ineligible to play in the NHL’s 24-team playoff tournament, Sorokin is expected to join the team in Toronto to practice and grow accustomed to both his teammates and the country. The 24-year-old is open to playing for Bridgeport in the AHL, according to Lamoriello, before earning his spot on the team.

The 78th overall pick in the 2014 draft, Sorokin has excelled for CSKA Moscow in the KHL. He won the Gagarin Cup last season and was named MVP of the playoffs. In 40 games this season, he was tied for second in wins, third in goals-against-average, tied for fourth in save percentage and first in shutouts.

Those performances have already excited goalkeeping coaches Mitch Korn and Piero Greco, according to head coach Barry Trotz, who called them “two kids in a candy store.”

Matt Martin did not practice and is dealing with a personal matter, though Trotz said, “It’s all positive.” Martin is notably married to former NFL quarterback and current radio host Boomer Esiason’s daughter Sydney, who is pregnant.

The Islanders will hold their first scrimmage on Wednesday, according to Trotz.

Goalie Semyon Varlamov, who is under contract through 2022-23, met Sorokin while playing for the Russian national team. Varlamov said they have “a great relationship.”

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