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Are Caps Done?

Given the Caps' signing of Mike Knuble earlier today and their proximity to the salary cap ceiling, it sounds like the team may be done signing free agents.

Asked if that were indeed the case, GM George McPhee said moments ago: "Probably. I said yesterday that we're probably not going to do a lot in free agency unless there was something there that made sense. We did it."

But that doesn't mean McPhee won't be working to improve the team (by adding a second line center or veteran defenseman) via a trade.

"We'll spend the next couple of months talking to clubs and seeing what other things can be done out there," he said. "If there are other things to do, we'll do them."

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  July 1, 2009; 4:59 PM ET
 
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Next: Knuble: Caps Had 'Everything I Wanted'

Comments

The best value move in our situation. Well done GMGM.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

i cant complain. well done on the day GMGM.

hopefully a trade makes us even stronger contenders.

Posted by: AndrewT1 | July 1, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Kit n' Knuble...someone make the sign for opening day.

Posted by: Moose33 | July 1, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Great addition. Takes care of one of the 3 issues people that gets pointed out about the Caps last year, and to me, the most glaring. (of course, others are going to say Defense)

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

I expected that and am okay with it. He took the bucks he had and got as much bang as he could for them. not bad.

Posted by: kittypawz | July 1, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Cammallari is a Hab.

Wonder where Koivu will go and if Kovalev is still going to resign.

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Huge turnover in Montreal. Could be real hit or miss, time will tell.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Also the reports are 6 mil/yr . 5/30

More than Hossa...

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:31 PM | Report abuse

@Dave

As much as a turnover they can make with a 7 mil Gomez. hah.

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Robert Lang interested in a one-year deal here in D.C?

Posted by: SA-Town | July 1, 2009 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Kubina to ATL.

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Don't tease about Lang. I loved the guy in his last go round here.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Robert Lang interested in a one-year deal here in D.C?

Posted by: SA-Town | July 1, 2009 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Really? Source?

Posted by: mrszilla | July 1, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Robert Lang. First, and only, guy to be traded mid-season when leading the league in points.

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Sorry...Dave...I have no source...just wondering if a one year deal to kill time until Backstrom gets paid would be of interest to him.

Cup contender..feed Ovie and/or Semin...just thinking out loud..

Posted by: SA-Town | July 1, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Rumors are 4-5 teams are in hunter for Scuderi, but that Pens won't have cap space to keep him.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

First interesting trade of the day.

Kubina to ATL for Exelby+

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Zanon to Wild.

Would like to know the details of this one..

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Philly, even minus Knuble, will be pretty solid next year... a team to watch out for, as if they weren't already.

And the rags fans aren't happy at all... Coworkers are trying to pretend they are happy about Brash but I just keep reminding them when they called for his head on a stick. Hope Brash is happy though, gd knows he deserves it! AND now I might actually get a chance to bump into him in NYC! He'll always be a Cap in my mind, as long as he doesn't beat down our guys... then we will have issues...

Posted by: mrszilla | July 1, 2009 5:39 PM | Report abuse

wow to the Cammalleri deal, we couldn't afford that.

Posted by: superpaqman | July 1, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sold on Philly. Their goaltending will still be suspect in my mind, and what was incredible depth at forward is getting thinner and thinner. Umberger, Lupul, and Knuble all gone in last 2 years. You have to wonder how well Briere will bounce back from an injury filled year.

It's still a team with guys like Carter, Richards, and Gagne...not to mention Claude Giroux, but I still don't seem them in the 2nd tier in the East along with Boston and Carolina.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Robert Lang? didn't we try that move before??

Scuderi's values certainly have gone up after his performance in the playoffs, the Caps probably can't afford him.

Posted by: joek443 | July 1, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

Sorry meant to say earlier I DO see Philly in the 2nd tier along with Boston and Carolina.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 5:46 PM | Report abuse

RE: Sloan's Hit last season!

Sloan's hit was on Daymond Langkow and he subsequently got jumped by Rene Bourque for the hit.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nzi5ckee9kA

awesome hit!

Posted by: jogabonito | July 1, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

no mention of Scott Hartnell today, huh?

he's another gritty player I'd love to have...

Posted by: capz_hockey | July 1, 2009 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Komisarek to Toronto all but done according to reports

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Komisarek in TO?

Posted by: superpaqman | July 1, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Komi is a Leaf. How anti-climatic.

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 5:57 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad we don't have to play Toronto 6 times a year now. They might not make the playoffs but they will leave their mark so to speak next year.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Can we give Nylander away? Please?

Posted by: cherryjoy | July 1, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Habs might need help down the middle! GO MICHAEL GO!!!!

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

Don't be surprised to see GMGM pull another rabbit out of his hat during free agency, like a 2nd line center/winger. He's got a good nose for value and actually has plenty of cap to work with for now. Alzner won't count against cap until the roster is set in the Fall - technically he's still assigned to Hershey - plus teams are allowed to go 10% over cap during the summer as they work out their personnel issues through trades, buyouts, etc. I'd estimate GMGM still has about $8 M of cap flexibility for the short term. If he can do something during the next two months to move Theodore or Nylander, that frees up a big chunk of change. Frankly, I'd rather see the Caps re-sign Johnny and if they can't unload Jose, they can send him down to Hershey - or maybe he'd prefer to play in the KHL.

Posted by: Little_John | July 1, 2009 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Nylander is the bigger issue -- Backstrom, Stecks, Gordo, Laich -- we have talent down the middle -- if we are going to pay that much to a centerman, it really should be someone other than Nyls.

Posted by: cherryjoy | July 1, 2009 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Alzner won't count against cap until the roster is set in the Fall - technically he's still assigned to Hershey - plus teams are allowed to go 10% over cap during the summer as they work out their personnel issues through trades, buyouts, etc. I'd estimate GMGM still has about $8 M of cap flexibility for the short term. If he can do something during the next two months to move Theodore or Nylander, that frees up a big chunk of change. Frankly, I'd rather see the Caps re-sign Johnny and if they can't unload Jose, they can send him down to Hershey - or maybe he'd prefer to play in the KHL.

Posted by: Little_John | July 1, 2009 6:05 PM |


Uhh, no. Your estimate is off. We have about no space, unless you count the 10% off-season cushion.

Move Theo or Nyls, and we have space. That much is obvious.

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 6:08 PM | Report abuse

From an earlier post and for Davethecapsfan-- we have our second line center
------------
Good signing by GMGM, providing Knuble brings it for the Caps like he did for the Flyers.

On the second line center -- the Caps have one. His name is Nylander. He should take the opportunity to show what he can do. He needs to stop noodling around with the puck, make crisp passes for a shot, or (here's a concept), take the shot himself. He's also been around long enough to know that he should also get back to play defensively in his zone.

At the same time, Boudreau needs to wipe the slate clean and take him off his hate list. Working with him, giving him a chance to use his skills and making him a viable part of the team again is much better than paying a boatload to ride the pine. If that can be done, it fills another hole. All that will be left will be to put together a trade package later in the year to pick up a good veteran D-man.

Posted by: Puckdawg69 | July 1, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Way off the subject, but did you guys (Tarik, Lindsay and Katie) have a send-off for Jason from the Redskins insider? I saw he's working for the NFL network now.

Posted by: superpaqman | July 1, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

For southPgh

Troll -- just in case you happen by here again and you missed this one, I'm reposting it just for you
------------------------
For southPgh

To add to ranndino's comment -- yeah, the Pens won the Cup, but it's not hard to do when you have the officials on your side. Caps dominated series but were outdone by the zebras in Game three. End of series, almost a 2:1 discrepancy for penalties in favor of the Pens.

Your team's cheap shots after the whistle, both against the Caps and the Canes, were never called. Yet, similar actions by both those teams were always whistled.

What really sealed it was when Malkin started a fight in the last 18 seconds of a game against Detroit. Correctly so, he was a given a game misconduct and suspended for the next game. But...oops..what happened? "Oh...no suspension. We made a mistake!" When did you ever see the officials and the NHL go back on a call like that? It's in the rule book!

So, in the end, you can try to strut your miserable hide on here, but you know that if it weren't for Bettman licking up to Lemieux (I still say he's got some kind of video on their action together), the Pens would not have won from series 2 onwards. They were favored by Bettman, who laid the rules for the refs, and you're a complete loser for believing they actually won fair and square.

Take that back to Steel City, m*ther f***er!

Posted by: Puckdawg69 | July 1, 2009 6:12 PM | Report abuse

@Puckdawg

As I've said in earlier posts, this team is fine by the trade deadline this year with either Nylander or Laich centering the 2nd line. Is it the ideal solution in my opinion? No, but moving Nylander is a pipe dream at this point. I don't have faith he'll "step up and earn the spot"...but he can hold it until we have options for something better or someone else in house steps up to take it.

Obviously that's the spot he'll play this year at this point, I just wish we COULD move him.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Komisarek gets 22.5 over 5 years, or a 4.5 cap hit. Shocker, large market team overpays.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | July 1, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Komisarek 4 years, $22.5 mil.

Roughly $4.5 mil per. Nothing we could afford.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Davethecapsfan,

I agree. Moving him would be ideal but no team would be willing to take that salary on based on his performance lately. However, it has to be a two-way deal whereby he gets his act together and plays the system and Boudreau gives him a chance to play and regain his confidence. I think we can still get some mileage out of him, but, he needs to get his head back into it.

Posted by: Puckdawg69 | July 1, 2009 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Agreed Puck, the beauty of such a scenario (well, big if beauty) is if he does somehow regain his form a little bit maybe he gives himself back a little trade value and he could be persuaded to agree to a move at the deadline.

Again...big if.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 6:22 PM | Report abuse

Rumors of Gaborik to the Habs. The fail level could be epic if this experiment doesn't work out.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 6:27 PM | Report abuse

"Rumors of Gaborik to the Habs. The fail level could be epic if this experiment doesn't work out."

NONONONONONONONONONONONONO!!!!!!

Posted by: BackstromInBlack | July 1, 2009 6:33 PM | Report abuse

I want my other team (Canucks) to sign him.

Posted by: BackstromInBlack | July 1, 2009 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Sammy Pahlsson to CBJ.

3 yrs..too long for us. Knuble was the better choice.

Posted by: richmondphil | July 1, 2009 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Still can't believe Brash got 2.8 over 2 years. Sathers hahahaha.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Story on espn.com already has our top line penciled in as Ovie/Back/Knuble. 105 goals combined last year on that line...not bad.

Also stated we are comfortable with Laich centering the 2nd line going into the season. Man Nylander is just on the S list.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 6:48 PM | Report abuse

Good signing, just what we need. Now we can focus on another Center and hope our veteran D-men stays healthy and the youngians step up.

Posted by: visionof75 | July 1, 2009 6:49 PM | Report abuse

I've been reading dozens of posts on several sites regarding the signing of Knuble and have yet to find anything bad said about him by Flyers fans.

They are all very classy posts, saying they'll miss him and wishing him good luck. But I'm not sure if that's a good thing because I've always hated the Flyers and their fans... LOL maybe I've just been wrong about them all these years.

Posted by: joek443 | July 1, 2009 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Hard to hate on a guy who's scored 20 goals or more in 6 straight seasons, had at least 10 PP goals in each of the last 5, and has only missed 25 games in his career. He played all 82 games last year btw.

Posted by: Davethecapsfan | July 1, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

@Davethecapsfan

I am not sure is Nylander is on the S list, or it is a strategy to get him to accept a Europe move. If the Caps sell him that the centers are Backstrom, Laich, Steckel and Gordon he becomes the extra player who is going to be sitting in the stands on most nights. I think it is a bit of a power play to get him to agree to a Europe move, since there are no takers in the NHL.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | July 1, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Jeez-oh-Pete! I'm out of pocket for a couple of hours and Knuble is ours? That's really nice! I like this! He'll do what we need him to do, and he's affordable. Well done, GMGM!

BTW, a 2.8M deal over 2 years is 1.4M per which is about what he made with us this past season. That's not a bad deal for him. It's just funny he's going to NYR after all the grief they gave us over the Orr incident in the playoffs. I'm glad for him, and happy to have had his services for these past few years. He's a strong banger and pretty fearless. Maybe not an upgrade for the Rags, but they got what they needed.

Posted by: Greg S. | July 1, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

@Puckdawg69 Re: Malkin - actually, he got a 10-minute misconduct (not the game misconduct he should have gotten) and both he and his opponent should have been issued game misconducts for the jersey tie-downs not being on. I put the blame for that being mis-called squarely on the shoulders of the referee, Bill McCreary. The Pens went 6-1 when he refereed for them during the playoffs...

Posted by: irockthered | July 1, 2009 8:10 PM | Report abuse

Great move getting Knuble. Sorry to see Brash go. I agree with comments earlier, if you can't deal Nylander than man up and tell him what you expect, let him play, and see if he delivers. You can't leave him stewing all year knowing you're trying to deal him if you get the chance. The guy has delivered before, let's see if he can come through given a fresh start.

Posted by: kcbrichmond | July 1, 2009 8:11 PM | Report abuse

@cherryjoy

Obviously, you're new to the board here. We've beaten, sliced, diced, hard boiled, kicked and ground this dead horse of a topic every which way from Saturday.

Posted by: Greg S. | July 1, 2009 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Please Please Please get rid of Theo's and Nylanders contract and let Mo go so we can sign Marty Havlat.

Ovie-Backy-Knuble
Semin-Laich-Havlat

That would be awesome. To bad it wont happen.

Posted by: digster1013 | July 1, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

I am happy with free agency ending for he Caps right now. I just really hope he is able to dump Nylander (somehow), Maybe move Theo, and most of all make trades for a 2nd line center and 1st pairing physical shut down D-man.

It seems the most success in free agency is usually with wingers.

Posted by: Mike4169 | July 1, 2009 10:23 PM | Report abuse

I like this guy but worry about the 2nd line of Semin, Flashy and Laich. I dont see Laich as the play maker they need as Havlat would have been.
I still think they need a 2nd D to play with Green and would love to see them package Poti and Pothier for one D.

Posted by: jgrasse | July 1, 2009 10:49 PM | Report abuse

As I stated earlier, the Knuble signing is a good thing. But, it's only a good "Start." Sasha Semin needs a banger too ( Assuming Knoble plays on OV's line.) I'd give serious attention to Giroux. He's been a phenomenal scorer at Hershey. I think he can be our "Diamond in the rough" if given more than a couple of games to prove himself. He's certainly not shy about going to the net. Actually, that's his forte. I think he'd do wonders for Semin. I'd at least give it a shot.
I couldn't help but notice the recurring theme from McPhee regarding this year's draft choices. Without exception, he made mention of each player's "Grit." That tells me that maybe, just maybe George has come to realize you need more than dainty little "Finesse" players, if you're sincerely trying to win The Cup. Let's hope so, anyway.
I truly believe we have the necessary replacements already within the organization. Hershey has at least four ( 4 ) players whose upside definitely intrigues me. First and foremost is Chris Borque. He EARNED a spot on the opening night's roster as a result of the outstanding camp he had last September. George screwed him all season long. Secondly, I'm encouraged by Andrew Gordon's steady improvement. He's earned a real opportunity to make the squad IMHO. I'll be both surprised AND DISAPPOINTED if Jay Beagle doesn't suit up opening night. He brings the type of true grit the Caps have obviously lacked in the past.
And, lastly I'd like to make a case for diminutive centerman, Perrault. The kid has a whole lot of Chicago's Kane in his game. He sees the entire ice exceptionally well. Outstanding passer. AND, HE WILL GO TO THE NET. I doubt if George will choose him to open the season with the big club. But, I'll be disappointed if both he, and Osala Osaka don't get more than a couple of games with the Big club this year.
I've decided I'm going to break my vow of never going to The Phone Booth until gmgm is fired. I've convinced myself that George finally "Gets it' as far as getting a better mix of heart & soul guys to go along with the finesse. I won't be hard to identify at the games THAT'S for sure. Later..........

Posted by: Puckguru | July 2, 2009 12:32 AM | Report abuse

Salary Cap Question:

Does anyone understand how the Caps could be $3m under the cap for next year, thus allowing them to sign Knuble for $2.8m when the salaries of Fedorov, Kozlov and Brashear dropped off??? I don't know what their combined salaries were last year but I think it must have been around $10m which by my math would have put them $7 mil over. I'm I missing something here? Thanks.

Posted by: jck747 | July 2, 2009 2:28 AM | Report abuse

My own theory on GMGM's saying he's not interested in buying out Nylander's contract so far is make it seem like he still has some ability, thus making him possible trade bait. I personally don't understand otherwise why he wouldn't do it, $2.3 million to go away beats $4.? to stay and produce nothing.

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Posted by: sallyworking2006 | July 3, 2009 3:31 AM | Report abuse

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