Kyle Okposo reflected Tuesday morning as he autographed Islanders memorabilia during breakup day. He knew he might never do that again.
And he knew in his heart that his life changed for the better the day he first signed his name on an Islanders contract.
“I’m proud of what has happened over the last 10 years I’ve been a member of this organization,” he said at what might have been his final trip to IceWorks in Syosset. “I’m proud of the way that the guys are, and proud of the way I feel I’ve had a hand in building everything around here, the culture, the way things are around here.”VoteIslanders 2016-17: Keep 'em or dump 'em?ColumnHerrmann: LI roots tug at Okposo’s heart
Okposo, 28, is a potential unrestricted free agent, and to this point, the Islanders have shown no inclination about his future with the organization, one way or another. He said there were no contract discussions at all during the season.
“I knew pretty early there weren’t going to be any talks so I did my best not to think about it,” he said. “I’m looking forward to making some decisions. There’s definitely a little bit of uncertainty, but it comes with the territory.”
But this territory has become home turf for Okposo, who owns a house on Long Island and has begun to raise his family here. Like his fellow prospective free agents, Frans Nielsen and Matt Martin, he would like to stay. But business is business.
“It could be the last time signing Islanders stuff as a member of the team. It’s a bit of a somber moment,” said the right wing who left the University of Minnesota early to join the Islanders organization. “But at the same time I might be back.”