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Morning Reading List: Wings, Bears Can't Close Out

Desperate to not have to see the Red Wings win the Stanley Cup at Mellon Arena for the second straight year, the Penguins did anything and everything last night to win, 2-1, and force a decisive Game 7.

When the series resumes Friday night in Detroit, Pittsburgh will attempt to become only the fourth team to rally from 2-0 series deficit in the Stanley Cup final.

Bears Head Back to Winnipeg

The Hershey Bears had a chance to hoist the Calder Cup at home in Game 5 last night but they couldn't close the deal, falling to the Manitoba Moose, 3-2.

A few morning links to get the day started:

* Pat Brisson, who represents Sergei Fedorov and Brent Johnson (and Sidney Crosby), said late last night that the Caps are still pursuing contracts with both players, though Fedorov is also exploring deals with KHL teams.

* June 26, 2004: "If you are second, you are second. If you are first, you are first. I always want to be first." -- Alex Ovechkin, the night he was drafted No. 1 overall. (D.C. Sports Bog)

* Hershey fans were "like a cork waiting to pop" last night, but if the Bears win the Calder Cup this year, it'll have to be on enemy ice -- again. (The Patriot-News)

* Check out video highlights of Game 5 here.

* "If there's one thing in which the Detroit Red Wings can take solace going into Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final, it's that history heavily favors them to win the most important game of their season." (The Hockey News)

* "Of all the tidbits to dribble out of that Phoenix courtroom yesterday - floating amid the seas of paper and the armies of lawyers doubtlessly brandishing pens like spears - the most interesting was a number. That number was US$100-million, which in the troubled case of the Phoenix Coyotes, does not sound like a lot." (National Post)

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  June 10, 2009; 8:01 AM ET
 
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Next: Morning Reading List: History on Their Side

Comments

What a lousy hockey night that turned out to be.

Posted by: uncatim | June 10, 2009 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Reposting from last night:

Hi all! Reporting in from Hershey. Still bummed over the loss, but we've got two more chances to take the Cup, so all is well. Have faith that the boys can get it done.

Bears totally outshot the Moose through most of the game but Schneider was really on his game tonight and his defense played well in front of him.

Ref only called four minors the whole game..the tripping/diving thing and then a minor on each team late in the third. There was a ton of things he could have called on either team but he pretty much just let the boys duke it out. Game got very chippy in the final minutes, so expect some of the bad tempers to carry over to Friday.

Neuvy was exceptional as always. First goal he would probably want back. Second goal he was pretty much screened by a Bear and a Moose. Third goal was a empty-netter.

Rumor is that game 6 on Friday will be televised by the local ABC station. It would be nice if ComcastDC would pick up the feed for those of you in the Washington area.

Posted by: tess2201 | June 10, 2009 12:28 AM

Posted by: tess2201 | June 10, 2009 8:30 AM | Report abuse

Bummer about the Bears. It would have been nice to win the Cup on home ice.

Bummer that Detroit didn't win last night because I like seeing unhappy Pens fans. :)

I would like for the Caps to resign Fedorov because like I say you're "better off with Fedorov" (see my sign in name). However, only at an appropriate salary which I deem to be in the $2M range.

Too bad the Caps can't unload Nylander and Theodore. Neither contributes at their salary level.

Should Fedorov and Kozlov go to Russia, do the Caps have adequate replacements in their system? Perhaps, but I have my doubts. If Theodore and Nylander could be unloaded in some fashion (buyout or trade) that could free up some cap space to sign someone who could contribute.

Posted by: BetterOffWithFedorov | June 10, 2009 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Here's a question for everyone, trying to think about things a bit differently this morning....

Given the many times last year we heard BB talk about having puck moving defensemen, and Ted have made about group think and the ones that GMGM made that he didn't think the system needed work (yet Leach agreed to leave)...anyways, something occurred to me this morning in light of watching the game last night.

Maybe BB wants a team of puck moving defensemen, with balanced containment skills, given the new rules. Maybe it's not enough coffee this morning, but I wonder if they are going to target:
Marc-Andre Bergeron from Minny?
He's a UFA and could be signed for around $2-2.75M given his previous numbers.

If we some how loose Juice in the offseason, he would have a comparable slapper from the point. Is this too far out in left field of a thought?

Posted by: caps28fan | June 10, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

Orpik is the dirties player I have ever seen. That is all.

Posted by: SA-Town | June 10, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

i still can't figure out how that wasn't called a slash on orpik on the cleary breakaway

Posted by: _stevo | June 10, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Dont try to figure it out....

Also dont try to figure out why Zetteberg was called for Goalie Int when he was clearly pushed in...

I like the whistles being put away, but it was clear early, that Pitt was getting every chance they could get to push it seven.

Matt Cooke, Malkin...dirty hits all over the place..

Posted by: SA-Town | June 10, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

true i should just stop complaining about it because it isn't going to change

Posted by: _stevo | June 10, 2009 10:13 AM | Report abuse

I'm guessing a Game 7 was necessary to rake in more moolah for Bettman and the Pennies. I'm not even bothering to watch. Apart from the Caps not being involved, I'm certain there's more than enough Redwings fans cursing up a storm to get the Redwings another Stanley Cup.

Obliterate them, Redwings!

Take the Calder Cup, Bears! You guys can do it!

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | June 10, 2009 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Last night WAS a terrible night for Caps Hockey Fans. Oh well..

Posted by: ejohnsto | June 10, 2009 11:01 AM | Report abuse

wow, last night just blew, and that pretty much went for everything last night, hockey included (nothing like being stuck in the Navy yard station waiting out the storm so I don't get struck by lightning with a bunch of people who keep asking "Oh, is it raining?" No, I'm just standing here because after a long day of work, I don't actually wish to go home. I'd rather stand here and explain to dumb frat boys "No, really, there's not anyplace to get beer around here except the tent.")

Posted by: RedBirdie | June 10, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

You Caps fans clearly missed the power plays the Wings got in final minutes, further debunking your comical conspiracy theories.

Posted by: Jumpy66 | June 10, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Pens have 45.475 tied up next year with 7 active players unsigned.

You know whats crazy, is that Kunitz gets 3.5 a year and Cooke gets 1.2. To me they seem like the same type of player almost.

Posted by: SA-Town | June 10, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

@SA-Town

That is exactly why the Ducks got rid of Kunitz. They realized he's not a goal scorer, rather just an energy player and those can be found for 1-2 mill less.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Re-posting from the previous thread:

Assume Fedorov and Kozlov are not re-signed. That's 6.5 million right there. I don't think Morrisson needs to come back, especially after you see where I'm going with this. I happen to think that either Poti or Pothier would be expendable too; they both have another year, so this would have to be in a trade. I can live without Jurcina as well.

Either way, that leaves plenty of money for a six-year, 48-million dollar to JAY BOUWMEESTER, who's a UFA. Would he sign for less than that? If so, great -- but I think he'll get some big offers from other teams.

BTW if the Caps can trade Theodore that's another 4.5 million off the books. Re-sign Johnson and give Varlamov and Neuvirth most of the work.

The D would look like this:

Green
Bouwmeester
Poti (or) Pothier
Erskine
Alzner
Schultz

Carlson, like Alzner this past year, starts in Hershey.

There would still be some room for a power forward signing, but not much because Backstrom will get a big new deal for '10-'11. A forward or two from Hershey would have to step up.

Someone mentioned that you shouldn't pay Bouwmeester more than Green, and that is a valid argument. My only counter to that is that Green didn't have the leverage of being an UFA when he signed. His next contract will be bigger after he reaches UFA. Until then he'll have to scrape by on 5.25-million per year and hopefully a Stanley Cup.

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

I like it O'Neal

I just cant see the Caps dumping big money up front with Semin and Backstrom needing contracts soon.

Lets be honest...scoring is not something we should be concerned about...It's grit up front, and D.

Posted by: SA-Town | June 10, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Pens have 45.475 tied up next year with 7 active players unsigned.

One of them being Bill Guerin and his $4 million self, who was absolutely instrumental in getting the Penguisn this far. He's either going to have to take a massive pay cut to remain in Pittsburgh, or the Penguins are back to playing another season of "Winger Roulette."

When the NBC guys are complaining about the quality of the officiating and noting that the Penguins are getting away with dirty and borderline dangerous hits, you know something is seriously seriously wrong.

Posted by: RedBirdie | June 10, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Pens played a good game last night. They got away with some penalties, but that is expected.

Det had the chance to come back. (two late PPs and Cleary's breakaway.)

Lets hope they can seal the deal Friday. (a game 7 final on friday night? really nhl?)

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

ONeal,
I could see that happening and wouldn't mind it. But take that money and sign Komisarek and Cammilleri. Two quality players in both areas we need for probably $9 mill combined a season versus the $8mill you want to give JayBO. Just a thought.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Dumping 8 mil/yr into JayBo doesn't sit well in my stomach.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

@Jumpy66: Are you implying that Malkin's crosscheck and Guerin's high stick were made up calls? They were legit calls, and there should have been others called before and after those. The Pens held on for dear life for the last half of the game. The Red Wings will have the pleasure of skating the Cup in front of the home fans this season. Don't worry, even though Crosby's been a no-show for the finals he'll probably still win the Conn Smythe even though he's not even the best player on the Pens team.

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 10, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Andoy | June 10, 2009 12:11 PM | Report abuse

ONeal,
I could see that happening and wouldn't mind it. But take that money and sign Komisarek and Cammilleri. Two quality players in both areas we need for probably $9 mill combined a season versus the $8mill you want to give JayBO. Just a thought.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 12:05 PM |

Komi and Cammallari sounds a lot better, but I would think they would command more than 9 mil/yr between both of them.

Cammallari/cheaper but just as effective D man.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 12:12 PM | Report abuse

If Feds, Koz, Morrison, Brash, Theo and Nyles all do not return. I know that is a stretch but maybe not as far fetched as we thought a month ago. Don't take account Kozzies salary bc he is replaced by Pothier. That is about $15 million in salary cap space if the cap stays the same and things would be extremely interesting.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

What would be the cap hit to buy out 3ormore? Anyone? How about Nyls?

Posted by: PhilR | June 10, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

I am almost 100% sure that GMGM will not buyout Nyls contract, especially Theo's. In fact, I am pretty sure he stated that himself. They, although may not have the right price by their name, are still effective people to play hockey. We just gotta make a way for them to fit or find a way for them to fit on another team.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Theo is not going anywhere. Sorry...he has a two year deal for a decent amount...he will play, and will be in D.C. Im guessing he splits time with Varlamov, and whoever is better will get more looks down the stretch...

I know we all think it will be Varly, but lets be honest...If Theo plays really well, and we're in the top 5 of the NHL, we have no problems riding him into the playoffs...again...I still think Varly is the guy for the second half of the season next year.

Posted by: SA-Town | June 10, 2009 12:26 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure someone can find the GMGM quote. I think it was just about Nyl's. Said something like he will never buy his contract out. And Theo's is obviously a much more lucrative contract, so I am just assuming he would not buy him out either.

Who knows though, GM's say things all the time.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Theo is not going anywhere. Sorry...he has a two year deal for a decent amount...he will play, and will be in D.C. Im guessing he splits time with Varlamov, and whoever is better will get more looks down the stretch...

I know we all think it will be Varly, but lets be honest...If Theo plays really well, and we're in the top 5 of the NHL, we have no problems riding him into the playoffs...again...I still think Varly is the guy for the second half of the season next year.

Posted by: SA-Town | June 10, 2009 12:26 PM |

Yeah, but Johnson is obviously still in the mix, going off the earlier post.

I think that hints at the fact that Theo might be out of here by trade or Varlamov is going to spending less time in the AHL then we thought.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

more time in the AHL*.

Sorry.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse

As many times as Murphy's Law kicks my butt each year, I am fairly certain i can say that Bouwmeester won't be coming to DC.

Trust me I wouldn't mind eating crow on this one, but given the strange events with Fla's GM leaving to coach Montreal and not getting a deal done before he left not to mention the 7 UFA's Montreal has on D of which make up 9+ Million.....thinking he goes to Montreal.

Posted by: caps28fan | June 10, 2009 12:31 PM | Report abuse

i would love to get Beauchemin from the ducks or maybe even steve montador from the bruins (probably pretty cheap). Both could add some more toughness on our team

Posted by: _stevo | June 10, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

There are huge decisions to be made one year down the road, whether they sign a high-end free-agent or not.

I think Bouwmeester is the best UFA defenseman out there, and he's only 25. If there's another guy who's a better fit, I'd look into it. Either way, I do think there needs to be some turnover on the blue line, and if you're going to do it, you might as well go big time.

Anyway, for '10-'11, I think Backstrom is a 100%, got to lock up with a big-contract kind of guy. And I think the longer McPhee waits the more that contract will cost. He should be locked up WELL before this time next year. Remember the new, and sharply higher, cap number won't take effect until '10-'11.

As for Semin -- I'm less certain. Is he talented? Obviously. Could he score 100 points? I think so. And he was a point-per-game guy in this year's playoffs. But he also takes WAY too many penalties and lacks commitment to defense. I'd love to keep him but if it's too expensive, I'd say Semin could be the odd man out. He could also be packaged as part of a trade.

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

I'm not saying they will buy out Nyls or Theo, I was just wondering what the hit would be.......trying to get a grip on the numbers to see just how badly it would hurt. If it would clear 3-4 mil in cap space then it may actually be a decent option for the team even by losing 4-5 mil.

Posted by: PhilR | June 10, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

@caps28fan:

That's a great point about Bouwmeester possibly going to Montreal. It looks like it could be a real mess in Florida this season..

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

I still think that Mattias Ohlund in VAN (who I believe becomes UFA this summer) whould give us good value for the d-man dollar. Anybody know if VAN has re-signed him?

Posted by: Rhino40 | June 10, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

@PhilR..

I'm still in the wishful-thinking mode that ALL of the Caps excess baggage will be sent to the KHL this season! A Nylander reunion with Jagr solves one MASSIVE problem. And I'm willing to take the fantasy even further.. What's that? Traktor Chelyabinsk needs a veteran goaltender? Jose!

Let me stay in my happy place for a while before I have to start thinking about buy-out numbers!

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

@Rhino40

Ohlund is a free agent.. I like him too and I also like Beauchemin and Komisarek.. I'd take any of them over Poti.

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Oneal, I would love to see that happen but am just trying to be a realist, the only reason Theo had the numbers he had this year was due to the offensive numbers the team was able to put up. I do not see anyone, KHL or otherwise, showing any interest in him.....now Nyls is a bit closer of a dream and yet still a dream I believe as I do not see Nyls wife allowing the move to Russia.

Posted by: PhilR | June 10, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

@TheRealOneal:

Losing Poti isn't exactly what I had in mind. A few unlucky bounces notwithstanding, Poti has mostly been quite solid for us. Maybe he doesn't kabong people the way we'd like, but he's still pretty good at cleaning up the loose trash. If any Caps' D-Men get their walking papers, I'd keep Poti and let go of Morrissonn (sp?) and/or Schultz.

Posted by: Rhino40 | June 10, 2009 1:03 PM | Report abuse

I am heading out to Vegas for the awards show next week and for Luc Robitaille's charity event, is anyone else making the trip?

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: tess2201 | June 10, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Poti's been hurt for close to two seasons. He had off season shoulder season last summer, which probably accounts for his rough start this past season, never mind the never-ending groin injuries. That said, he does the little things well and his one-man thrashing of the Rangers was delightful, plus while he's quiet and not the life of the party, he's apparently well respected in the locker room.

Posted by: RedBirdie | June 10, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

ThePat, take pictures and bring us back a full report!

Posted by: RedBirdie | June 10, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

@redbirdie

Ill try my best with pictures.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

From tedstake:

I also see that the Capitals are among the elite in the NHL now. We have to improve. We played the Penguins well during the season and during our playoff run with three games going to OT with them. We have played Detroit tough too the last two seasons with one win and one shootout loss. We have work to do but I am encouraged. We are all committed to improvement and to change to get us to the point where it is us that is still paying hockey in June. We have lots of tools at our command to improve; trades to make; draft choices to make; prospects to work into the lineup; some free agency to pursue; and some maturation of players already in our lineup. We have some trade deadline moves to make next year. We are close but we must keep moving forward and we will.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

If Nyls wife didn't want to live in Edmonton, what makes you fools think she'd want to live in Russia?????

Also, he is not going to retire. Reason - $8.5 million.

The Caps will not buy his contract and take an average cap hit at $1.424 million over the next four years.

Nylander plays for the Caps next year or he waives his NTC and plays for another NHL team.

End of story.

Posted by: puckman | June 10, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Tom Poti does the little things?
Like play patty cake with Crosby in game 2 on his 3rd goal?
Like doesn't take the pass and plays inbetween the passer and shooter, the worst option?
Like take stupid penalties in OT last season?
Like an own goal in game 5 this season?

Poti was/is and always will be a bum. Unfortunately he's our bum and the NYR are laughing about it.

Trade Poti/Schultz/Semin/Clark/Alzner for Heatley/Zubov/J.Smith

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

@RedBirdie:

All true. Thing is, with an Ohlund or Komisarek or Bouwmeester or Montador added to the mix (and ShaMo or Schultz out) means we could keep the benefits of Poti but not have him carry quite so many minutes. This, in turn = (hopefully) fewer games lost due to injury.

Posted by: Rhino40 | June 10, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

@RedBirdie:

All true. Thing is, with an Ohlund or Komisarek or Bouwmeester or Montador added to the mix (and ShaMo or Schultz out) means we could keep the benefits of Poti but not have him carry quite so many minutes. This, in turn = (hopefully) fewer games lost due to injury.

Posted by: Rhino40 | June 10, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

The more I take a look at behindthenet.ca numbers the two D men we should be looking at are:

Steve Montador - BOS
and
Marc-Andre Bergeron - MIN

Posted by: caps28fan | June 10, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Oduya not bad either, but Montador and Bergeron are ranked above him

Posted by: caps28fan | June 10, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

As for Theodore, I see the Caps trading him to another club for someone's #2 goalie at say $2 million with a year left on his contract.

Then the Caps buy him out and take a cap hit of $670,000 over 2 years.

This solution is a bit more appealing.

Or trade Theo to Philly for Jeff Carter (2 years at $5/year).

Philly gets their another keeper in case Emery explodes and creates another $1 million of cap space for them.

Caps get a second line center for an additional $1 million dollar cap hit which is better then signing Feds at $2-3 million of a cap hit and at the same time get rid of Theo.

Posted by: puckman | June 10, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Things could be worse for us like Philly having Briere for the next 6 years at $6.5 million per year - OUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: puckman | June 10, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

JSchon- Poti was/is and always will be a bum. Unfortunately he's our bum and the NYR are laughing about it.

I get that we all have players who arent our favorite, but honestly I think Poti did an amazing job in the first series and still played well after he had a broken foot. Bounces and badly timed penalties are something you could peg on a bunch of guys on our team, and other teams. Bounces happen in the playoffs, thats just how it goes. As for the penalties I think that something that as a team we have to work on. I'm hoping that this year we are more disciplined. But to blame Poti, I completely disagree. And if you noticed, the Rags and their fans were completely hushed by Poti's performance. He was the only one left laughing.

Posted by: mrszilla | June 10, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon: Danny Heatley would be a nice addition. He takes as many bad penalties as Semin, and he's 3 or 4 years older. Jason Smith (35) and Sergei Zubov (38) no way. You're not getting rid of very much salary, just a lot of young prospects when you wrap Semin, Schultz and Alzner in the deal. We could get someone like Heatley with Semin alone.

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 10, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

To anyone who thinks the Caps can afford Bouwmeester:

Ovechkin 9.538
Nylander 4.875
Semin 4.600
Clark 2.633
Backstrom 2.400
Laich 2.067
Bradley 1.000
Fehr (Est - RFA) 0.900
Gordon (Est - RFA) 0.900
Osala (w/bonus) 0.850
Flash 0.725
Steckel 0.725
Beagle (w/bonus) 0.875
Aucoin 0.500
S/T 14 Forwards 32.588
Green 5.250
Poti 3.500
Pothier 2.500
Alzner (w/bonus) 1.675
Jurcina or Schultz (Est - RFA) 1.275
Erskine 1.275
Sloan (Est - UFA) 0.750
S/T 7 Defensemen 16.225
Theodore 4.500
Varlamov 0.850
S/T 2 Goalies 5.350
Total 23 Players 54.163
Cap Space (Est) 57.000
Available 2.837

If you let go of Mo (assumed in my spreadsheet) you have 2.8 available. If Bouw gets even only 6.5, it only works if you move Theo (replace w/Johnny at $1M) and Jurcina (replace then with Bouw) or if you can somehow make Nylander disappear into thin air and take his cap hit with him. I also heard the cap might be lower next year, but don't know how true that is.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 10, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Semin $4.6M
Poti $3.5M
Schultz $.700M
Alzner $1.5M
Clark $2.6
Total $12.9M

Heatley $7.5M
Zubov $1.0M
Smith $2.6M
Total $11.1M

Take the savings and make a play on Versteeg. He will expendable because of a higher rated RW coming into play next season (Makarov, Beach) and raises due for Keith, Kane and Toews.

Possible lines...

OV/Backstrom/Versteeg
Heatley/Zubov/Fehr
Flash/Steckel/Laich
Beagle/Gordon/Bradley
Osala/A.Gordon

Green/Smith
Pothier/Jurcina
Carlson/Erskine
Sloan/Kronwall

Jason Smith is a very steady defender, and D guys can play until they're 40.

Heatley is a bad a$$ and he will get you 45/45 every year.

Not Sergei Zubov. Ilja Zubov, young stud center from mother Russia.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

And btw, I wasn't blaming Poti for anything, just pointing out a few bad plays. I do not think Poti is worth $3.5M and wish we had a mulligan with him.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 2:27 PM | Report abuse

We arent signing any major FA's. Trade is the way to go to get what we need. Trading salaries for salaries.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

Mike Knuble and Mike Komisarek. Those are two names the Caps should target for this upcoming season. We don't need a slow and aging Smith.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

I think I'm on record as being the first poster to suggest Bouwmeester, so here's the response.. I don't think it's possible unless Nylander and Theodore are both gone.

Now, I don't think that's going to happen. My hopes were boosted by the report the other day that he might go to Russia and play with Jagr. Sounds like a very, very long shot.

Trading Theodore might not be quite as long. There are teams that need a number 1 goalie -- Edmonton and Colorado come to mind and that's without me running over to NHL.com to look at rosters.

Nylander + Theodore = more than 9-million dollars.. more than enough to sign Bouwmeester.

That leaves two questions - #1 - Is Boumeester the guy who will solidify the defense, period. Not a stop-gap. Not a project. A sure thing. If so, then #2 - Can Nylander and Theodore be shown the door?

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Dude, Komi is my boy, but he a FA. Unless we unleash the fury (salaries) we wont be able to afford him.

Smith might be old but he would be the most technically sound defensemen we have.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Bouwmeester is Green, Green is Bouwmeester. They are practically the same type of player.

He certainly isn't a defensive defensemen.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

Komisarek is 26 and earned $1.9 million. With the way the economy is going and the shrinking salary cap there may not be huge free agent market out there beyond the Bouwmeesters of the world (who is in no way shape or form coming to DC...Pronger in a trade with one year left on his contract is more likely). I personally believe Mo is gone and Komisarek was earning essentially the same amount as Mo. Montreal has a ton of free agents to re-sign and may be in on Lecavilier. He just may be available and gettable.

As for Smith...one of the big issues with the Caps defense has been speed. I personally don't want an older slower defensemen who is going to continue to lose a step.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Oneal: I think the opinion of most on here was that Bouwmeester wasn't the answer.

If I were spending that much on a defenseman, I'd rather have a Phaneuf type than a Bouwmeester type.

I believe McPhee has shopped Theo and might have a deal pending, or why else would he be talking contract with Johnny?

If Johnny gets $1.2M, that clears up and extra 3.3 and puts cap space at $6M. Unless of course a player comes back rather than a pick. More likely some team will offer their cap problem for our cap problem (Theo).

Nylander going to Russia solves everything if he retires first and the cap hit goes away.

Also, my spreadsheet doesn't include a young Russian center, can't remember name, who is like 22 and is maybe a pretty good prospect. I think his name is Yunkov or something like that.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 10, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Man, I've been Komisarek's agent on this blog since last season. I know Komi. Komi is due for a raise my friend, probably double his current salary or even higher. My guess is that it will take $18M/4 to get him.

And there is no way the Flyers trade Jeff Carter for Theodore. NO WAY. The fans would burn the city of Philly if that happened.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps. Just not sure Komisarek is going to see a $4.5 million salary per year with the salary cap expected to go down over the next two seasons and him not being a prolific offensive defensemen. In fact, Beninati mentioned his name as a potential target during an interview a couple of weeks ago.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

im sorry, but a theo for jeff carter trade is about as likely as a nylander for patrick kane trade

Posted by: _stevo | June 10, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Nevermind the ridiculousness of Carter for Theo concept. The Flyers just signed Ray Emery and aren't in the goaltender market. Theo back to Colorado is more likely.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

@tominFl

if Nylander retires the cap hit doesn't go away. He signed his contract before the age of 35, that only applies post 35.

And if the Avs were to trade for Theo, we could get Hejduk in return and solve our first line RW issue. He only has 1 year left on his contract so could make some sense.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Komisarek does sign for less than Orpik who make $3.875M per.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 2:58 PM | Report abuse

does not...

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 2:59 PM | Report abuse

@ThePat

You have it reversed. Players who sign multi-year deal when they are younger than 35 and retire during the life of the contract have the salary removed from the cap, not vice versa. That is why players over 35 generally only sign one year deals.

Also, if the Caps did trade Theo to the Avs they would get a bag of pucks back, not a quality player. It would be a salary cap dump.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 3:06 PM | Report abuse

ok then I am wrong on that....and I know it would be more than likely be a salary dump, but they have a player that would fix a major issue this team has heading into next season. I'd send them the rights to Borque as well to get Hejduk.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

All things being equal and a continued growth in the salary cap I would tend to agree with you. But with the financial problems of many teams and many teams already being up against the cap with a shrinking cap I wouldn't go out on a limb and say Komisarek is necessarily getting more than Orpik.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

@ThePat

I honestly don't know the answer to this. Are the Avs upset with Hedjuk? Are they looking to get rid of him? I know they are going into a re-build, but Hedjuk with one year left at $4 million is going to be a trade deadline move at best. Plus, the Caps would have to give up more than Theo and Bourque for Hedjuk.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Keep your eyes on Philly - they have to do something to create cap room. There cap number is a "disaster" and they will trade this summer!

Here's the low down:
Briere $6.5 mil per year for 6 years
Richards $5.75 mil per year for 7 years
Gagne $5.25 mil per year for 2 years
Carter $5 mil per year for 2 years
Hartnell $4.2 mil per year for 4 years
Lupul $4.25 mil per year for 4 years
Timonem $6.33 mil per year for 4 years
Carle $3.44 mil per year for 3 years
Jones $2.75 mil per year for 1 year

$43.47 million for 9 players!!!

Someone(s) is going to be traded.

Briere, Richards, Hartnell, Lupul Timonem and Carle take $26.22 million of cap space (6 players) the next 3 years and nobody wants their contracts.

Carter is the odd man out at a reasonable price and contract for some team that can afford him. Do they "wish" to keep him - yes. Can they afford to keep him long term - no.

Knuble - UFA will be gone after July 1

Posted by: puckman | June 10, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

OOps, sorry for the consistent misspell of Hejduk's name. :)

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

@Puckman

Yes, the Flyers have some bad contracts, however, it doesnt mean they will make bad trades. Theo for Carter doesn't make any sense for them. Carter for Alzner does.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

@freakin

All it takes is 1 team, the cap isnt moving next season, it probably will move lower the following. What does that mean? It means Komisarek will have fewer suiters, the money will be there.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

We will see. I just don't see $4.5 million per year in Komisarek's immediate future.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 3:36 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

Carter for Alzner a possibility. One problem though is the Caps need to clear cap space.

Carter for Theo (1 year) is also a possibility . Has Emery reformed his attitude and personality? Time will tell. If he implodes, JT60 can fill the gap for a year.

Who really knows? All speculation!

Posted by: puckman | June 10, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I think all this free-agent discussion started because of the comments from Brent Johnson's agent.

I mean seriously -- if the Caps re-sign Johnson, Theodore HAS to be gone, right? Varlamov and Neuvirth both in Hershey? That makes no sense. For all we know, Neuvirth might be the best of the bunch anyway.

Theodore's departure + Fedorov + Kozlov + Morrisson + Brashear + .. hey wait.. is Chris Clark coming back? If so it better be for less than 2.6-million dollars!

That's a whole lot of cap space for a team that came within a few unlucky bounces of beating Pittsburgh. McPhee said the Caps won't be big players in free agency, but what else is he going to say? If Nylander could be eliminated as well now the Caps would be in a position to be HUGE players possibly in draft-day trades and / or free agency.

I may be going insane because I'm on pain medication after some surgery this week.. but I wonder what the Islanders would want for the #1 draft pick. Caps could pick Hedman.. his brother's already a Caps prospect.

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Jeff Carter and a way for the Flyers to get out of salary cap trouble: We trade them Nylander and a prospect for Carter. Nylander then retires. We get Carter, they get Alzner and cap space, and everyone is happy.

Posted by: ThePat | June 10, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Just an assumption, but...

Everyone is cap concious. All the teams are hitting the ceiling this year, so major plays for big buck players won't happen.

The Caps don't have the room for Bou. While it would be lovely for Nylander to retire and skip off to Rus, I doubt it will happen. Moving JT to Colorado would be interesting, but we'd have to take something back to make room for his salary.

We need to find the kids that will become someone like a Pronger. Komisarek would be a good fit and shouldn't break a bank in the process. Dandenault is another that could fit in. Neither should be more than 2.5/year.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 10, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Except Nylander who retired with $9M left on the table.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

The flyers might want Theo. They and Biron are way apart in contracts talk and the Emery thing is still not a done deal yet. They need a proven starter.

Posted by: Andoy | June 10, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

@Oneal

FYI, Clark has 2 years left at $2.633 million per year.

Posted by: puckman | June 10, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Emery's deal with Philly is done.

http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=425258

Posted by: puckman | June 10, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

@puckman

Yikes the chart I was looking at had no salary in it after this past season.

That's a lot of cash.. maybe he'll work himself back into shape this summer.

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Accounting time...

Nylander has $9 M left
Assume his tax rate is 35%
His net is 5.85 M.

Just for S&G's let's say KHL offers him $7M. It's tax-free. He makes $7M. He'd be ahead if he retired and jumped by $1.15M.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 10, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

i thought I read that the Flyers had to wait until July 1 to ink a deal with Emery...something to do with the CBA and players leaving and coming back into the league.

Posted by: caps28fan | June 10, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

apparently that isn't the case given the NHL link above.

Posted by: caps28fan | June 10, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Greg S. | June 10, 2009 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Emery was unsigned as a UFA last season and went to KHL. It is after 7/1. Just not 7/1/09.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 10, 2009 4:47 PM | Report abuse

@caps28fan

You're not alone.. a lot of the hosts on XM radio were confused about that the other day as well when they were talking about the Emery signing.

I suppose Philly might have been a possibility for Theodore, but not anymore. There are others..

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

I did not see any post this previously, but TSN (Canada) put up their Off-Season Game Plan for the Capitals today. It can be found at:

http://www.tsn.ca/columnists/scott_cullen/?id=281468

Posted by: bill_in_damascus | June 10, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

@bill_in_damascus

Thanks for the link.. he doesn't mention much that we don't already know, but he does bring up Pronger as a possibility. Freakinandpeakin mentioned him earlier and I agree he'd help.

Ask Mike Green if Pronger knows how to hit.

Oneal

Posted by: TheRealOneal | June 10, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Alzner again proves to be a weak link for the Bears on defense. He has no idea how to defend the front of that net. He flops around like a fish out of water.

Posted by: cstanton1 | June 10, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I just don't agree with Pronger being here. I like his strengths, but he's prone to trying to injure sometimes. Stuff happens on the ice, but his type of attempts are more of the pre-meditated type.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 10, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

(Sorry for such a late reply, I haven't been home all day and was dead after the Bears' game last night. Anyway...)
4RBears, Sorry, just now catching up on the days happenings. I usually look up there as soon as I get there since I tend to miss who's on deck for the night while driving up there. Although, aren't they usually sitting up on the mezzanine above that box?

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | June 9, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Yes, usually, they are sitting on the very top level right by the press box. But, with all the bloggers and such coming to Hershey, they got kicked out and had to move into a box. Last night, though, they weren't even in their normal box: they were just two boxes away from where Brucey and GMGM were.

Posted by: 4RBears | June 10, 2009 6:22 PM | Report abuse

"Prone to injure"? More like "Well earned reputation for being one of the dirtiest players in all of hockey."

Posted by: RedBirdie | June 10, 2009 6:22 PM | Report abuse

Hate Pronger all you want, but if you seriously don't want him here for a good price then I don't know what to say.

I (and probably all of you) hated Brashear when he wasn't on our team. Once the dirty dirt mcgees get on your team, you should suspend silly personal biases aside.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Accounting time...

Nylander has $9 M left
Assume his tax rate is 35%
His net is 5.85 M.

Just for S&G's let's say KHL offers him $7M. It's tax-free. He makes $7M. He'd be ahead if he retired and jumped by $1.15M.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 10, 2009 4:29 PM |

I will point this out again.
KHL....redraft....contracts not being fulfilled.

Seriously, if your name is not Yashin or Jagr, you probably saw about half of what you signed too, if that.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

Except Nylander who retired with $9M left on the table.

Posted by: JSchon | June 10, 2009 4:20 PM |

All he has to do is wait. He can see most of that money and still retire if he wanted to be a di**. basically, do exactly what Naslund didn't do.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Suggested acquisition for Caps.

How about Petr Skora who's currently with the Pens? He's a right winger with a 2.5 million cap hit and at the end of his contract with the Pens. He didn't play much in the playoffs and averages 25 goals a year. (Of course, he's now injured since he got hurt blocking a short.)

Assuming no major health issues (likely a big if), maybe the Caps should sign him and put him at right wing on the first line (unless we'd rather have him on the second line). Certainly an improvement over our other alternatives at that position.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | June 10, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Sykora doesn't really add anything we don't have. We need forwards who back check and are positionally sound.


@jmucapsgirl

http://images.tsn.ca/images/stories/20090610/emery_49895.jpg

:)

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 7:56 PM | Report abuse

For those doing the accounting on the Nylander contract you have to also account for the agents take and even more significantly is the amount that goes to escrow, which they are not getting back this season.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 10, 2009 8:09 PM | Report abuse

richmondphil, Am I supposed to be looking at what Jeff Carter looks like when he gets out of bed the morning after he gets his wisdom teeth taken out or Emery with his spiffy new Flyers jersey with that ugly white nameplate? All kidding aside, can I tell you how much of a good chuckle I had over that today? Honestly, dude's a hot mess. I'm going to enjoy watching this unfold, for good or evil. He's karaaaaazy!

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | June 10, 2009 9:25 PM | Report abuse

It is a picture from the Old Testament, foreshadowing the second coming of Jesus to save the NHL from the clutches of the evil Miro Satan and his figurehead, Damian "Sidney" Crosby.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 10, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Just a reminder that whatever Feds' and Johnson's agent said is just that... agent talk.

Posted by: capsfan01 | June 11, 2009 3:35 AM | Report abuse

Any word on the supposed meeting this week between GMGM and Brash??

Posted by: kcbrichmond | June 11, 2009 8:09 AM | Report abuse

May I just say how nice it is to have almost all knowledgeable HOCKEY fans back on this blog! Towards the end of the season and the playoffs the doom and gloom, bandwagon fans on here were driving me insane!

Posted by: PhilR | June 11, 2009 8:23 AM | Report abuse

July 1 cant get here quick enough.

One gap we are going to experience with Kozlov leaving is the shootout.
Knowing we're not signing UFA's, per GMGM, but ...

Tossing this name in the bucket:
Ales Kotalik - EDM - 29 - RW - UFA - $2.5M

He's Russian, he's a UFA, he's better at the shootout than Koz was, and should be easy to lure out of EDM for roughly the same price. His salary is exactly the same and points were roughly the same, essentially Koz just 4-5 years younger

Posted by: caps28fan | June 11, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

sorry, Kotalik is Czech,

got that wrong after I looked into it

Posted by: caps28fan | June 11, 2009 8:30 AM | Report abuse

I'm almost certain that unless we unload major salaries that GMGM will not be able to go after any middle to high end FA's. Not with the future of the cap in flux and Semin and Backstrom due for big raises in 10/11.

This means no Komisarek for me or Kotalik or Pronger or Squirts the Wondercow.

Trades were we trade salary for salary is where we need look at, and of course in-house.

Posted by: JSchon | June 11, 2009 9:07 AM | Report abuse

will gustafson play next year?

Posted by: my92agsr | June 11, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Anton G will be in camp I'm sure, but I doubt he will be in North America next season. 2010/2011 is probably his target season. Whether he goes to Hershey or does the Backstrom thing and starts with the big team is undecided obviously. Given the teams track record, he'll be in Hershey to start.

Posted by: JSchon | June 11, 2009 9:38 AM | Report abuse

JSchon,
I know, just passing the time doing some research until we find out what GMGM is able to do.

I thought Jasper or OFB had something about Anton wanting to come over this year and "should" be with Hershey next season. Will have to dig.

Posted by: caps28fan | June 11, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

For those doing the accounting on the Nylander contract you have to also account for the agents take and even more significantly is the amount that goes to escrow, which they are not getting back this season.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin

Speaking of escrow, most of the NHL also put some of their salaries in escrow. No matter the country, the agents and lawyers will always get theirs first. The players will get their money, just not right now.

Yes, there is a risk going to the KHL, and some of the teams are under capitalized. In those teams, the players salaries haven't been paid, or have been paid late or short. It happens.

Omsk seems to be better run than most of the others, and that's where the rumor has Nyls going.

There are several ways for Nyls to get to Russia, retirement is just one of them. It's the one that seems to be the cleanest particularly if he has no desire to attempt a comeback.

Getting Mrs. Nyls to Omsk will be a different issue all together.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 11, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

It will be 61 degrees in Omsk today. 70's and sunny over the weekend.

Posted by: JSchon | June 11, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

A little late to the Nyles to Russia party, but it just hit me, didn't Nylander open a bar in Russia last off-season? I think it was puckdaddy that had the story. (I'm too lazy to look it up)

Posted by: superpaqman | June 11, 2009 11:04 AM | Report abuse

oops, sorry it was China, the other red state...

Posted by: superpaqman | June 11, 2009 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Pens blow!! Forget Schultz on D: add Juice

Posted by: doughless | June 11, 2009 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Michael Samuelsson for second line RW.

Posted by: thiazzi | June 11, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

And what about Bertuzzi?

Posted by: thiazzi | June 11, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

And what about Bertuzzi?
Posted by: thiazzi | June 11, 2009 11:21
-----------------
Gack! The Caps signing Bertuzzi might be enough to make me find a new team to cheer for.

Posted by: tess2201 | June 11, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

To all of those dying for some sort of major trades or free-agent acquisitions, don't forget that WE HAVE A GOOD TEAM HERE. The talent is young and raw maybe, but considering the season standings, teams they regularly beat, and Hershey potential, why bother shopping as though we need serious help here from some high-dollar name. We're close with what we have. Some are calling to get rid of guys like Schultz because they don't hit or what have you, but he might be playing the exact game the coaching staff wants of him. He's young. Give him a chance to develop. It takes little talent to throw the body around. Sure, you need some of it, but in doing so you take a chance at taking yourself out of the play as well. I think Schultz's game is more like Pothiers in the defensive end. He does not have the offensive potential, but does well with his outlets. Give the re-build a chance. One last thing (I have never written so much) I wouldn't mind seeing a healthy Chris Clark at RW on Ovies line. He brings a great physical game, tough in the corners as well as the net, and the two played well together a few years back.

Posted by: gonchpup | June 11, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

komisarek is our best bet. he will come reasonable b/c of the uncertainty of the cap future.

schultz is still considered a prospect...maybe we coudl package him with nylander or theodore for someone...e.g theo and schultz for jeff carter...

we get komisarek and get rid of nylander OR theodore...i will consider off season a success!

Posted by: carsonspence | June 11, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Not only "no", but HELL NO to Bertuzzi to the Caps! I'd rather root for Philly than the Caps with Bertuzzi.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 11, 2009 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

The better way to look at Free agents is look to see who is in the last year of their contracts. Then trade for them as rentals for the playoffs. The caps have a lot of young talent that others may want. So you dont have them the entire year, as long as you make the playoffs it really does not matter, look at San Jose and Boston, Caps and Hawks, great regular season, no cups. Rent them at the end of the year and then make the push, no big salary hit,but maybe future in the Playoffs.

Posted by: RichC3 | June 11, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Something else people are failing to recall regarding the KHL. There is a limit to the number of foreign-born players on each team! I believe that limit is three.

Fedorov and Kozlov are both Russian. They could get in without trouble.

Brashear? American.
Nylander? Swede.
Theodore? Quebecois.

I have my VERY serious doubts about any of the three of them going to the KHL with the three-foreigners-per-team limit.

Posted by: irockthered | June 11, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

If Theo is going anywhere, and I kind of doubt he is, it'll probably be back to Colorado (though there were bridges burnt there) or maybe Edmonton(?).

Posted by: Greg S. | June 11, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Has anybody else noticed the Penguins always win when McCreary is a ref? Games 5 & 7 against us, Games 3, 4, & 6 against Detroit. Not sure if he did any of the ECF but the Pens swept those. They played 50 minutes of penalty free hockey again in Game 6, it's incredible.

Posted by: Osfan092589 | June 11, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon

Don't get ahead of yourself to much on the fluctuating salary cap and raises due Backstrom and Semin. The Caps have fortunately positioned themselves rather nicely when it comes to the cap. We already know that Feds, Theo, Kozlov, and Pothier are off the books either this season or next and account for $13 million in cap space. Nylander's NMC is gone after this season and his salary will only be $3 million and more easily bought out or jettisoned in some other fashion (a move to the minors, or traded), and could result in even a larger relief from the cap.

Backstrom is going to see his money and that will be the biggest hit, so figure an additional $5million based over what he is earning now and accounts for on the cap. Semin already accounts for over $4.5 million towards the cap. So if he earns $6.5 million in his next deal that is only an additional $2 million of the cap that is eaten up. That means $7million of additional cap space to those two players after next season, of the roughly $13 million that could be available.

All this means is that GMGM and his team need to manage the salary cap well this offseason and not saddle themselves with any over valued underproducing contracts and the team will be okay on the other end.

This is why I like the idea of Pronger. He is $6.5 million, but it has only one year left on the deal. We disagree on what Komisarek may earn, but given his age he would be a cheaper long term investment. (Mind you the team could only go after one of these two guys).

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

BTW. Don't know if this has been reported earlier, but check out TSN's top 10 plays of the playoffs.

WWW.TSN.CA/NHL

Posted by: Greg S. | June 11, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

sigh. #1 and #2. I can't believe its over. I can't believe I'm going to watch game 7 between Detroit and Pittsburgh. Those highlights brought it all back. I need the Wings to win just so that Eddie O won't smile for the rest of the night. Sickens me.

Posted by: oo7 | June 11, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Kotalik? Are you serious? That guy has spent his whole career relying on his shootout skills. BUF fans hate him.

Bertuzzi? Do want....5 years ago. The guy has aged hard it seems and not as effective since the whole Moore incident. He was the reason Naslund put up those numbers. I don't really care about his reputation or whatever. That isn't stopping anyone from loving Brashear, now is it?

Posted by: richmondphil | June 11, 2009 2:59 PM | Report abuse

007,

You mean "Edzo"?

Posted by: NJNJ | June 11, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

This is why I like the idea of Pronger. He is $6.5 million, but it has only one year left on the deal. We disagree on what Komisarek may earn, but given his age he would be a cheaper long term investment. (Mind you the team could only go after one of these two guys).

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 1:44 PM |

Can't re-stress this enough. We can spend all the money we want next year, but anything after that is stupid. Backstrom, then Semin. Two priorities.

This is why I said it doesn't really matter what Feds gets as long as it is just 1-yr.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 11, 2009 3:03 PM | Report abuse

What are the chances GMGM might package the Caps' first pick along with a highly touted prospect plus a regular Caps player for a much needed player?

I say there's very good chances.

Posted by: Andoy | June 11, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

It would be nice if we only had to re-sign Semin and Backstrom in 2010/11, but thats not the case.

Semin $6.5M
Backstrom $6M
Flash $2.5M
Steckel $1.5M

Aucoin?
Beagle? Almost certainly resigned
A.Gordon?
Neuvirth?

Komisarek will get $4M+ from some team... My guess is that it won't be from us.

Posted by: JSchon | June 11, 2009 3:22 PM | Report abuse

What are the chances GMGM might package the Caps' first pick along with a highly touted prospect plus a regular Caps player for a much needed player?

I say there's very good chances.

Posted by: Andoy | June 11, 2009 3:13 PM

I disagree. We already have a number of highly-paid vets plus a number who will soon be highly paid vets. You must keep rolling in the relatively-low paid youngsters. Average salary w/cap is $2.5M. Do the math. It takes four guys at $800K to offset Ovechkin and make the five of them average $2.5M. It takes 2 more at $1M each averaged with Green to make the three of them at $2.5M. I have posted the cap figures for next year. There's only $3M available with Kozlov, Feds and Mo removed. Taking a low paid player and the #1 pick and moving them for another long-term, high paid player is not the answer IMHO.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

noooo those top 10 are amazing. caps rule. I'm sad now. I feel like it's may again and I'm convinced we're going all the way.

Posted by: my92agsr | June 11, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

@tominFl

Nylander or Theo will not be back next year, maybe both. I know people keep saying they doubt its possible, but trust me at least one of them will not be here. So there is more money to play with other than that $3mill that you are currently saying.

Posted by: ThePat | June 11, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

@JSchon,

Sorry, you absolutely lost me. Flash at $2.5 million! Please. There is no way you can honestly make that projection today. He earns $725,000 and has yet to have a 20 goal season and you expect him to get $2.5 million!?!?! Same goes for Steckel. He is earning approximately $500K and you expect him to all of a sudden jump to $1.5 million...that is almost what Laich earned this past season.

I'll give you Backstrom and Semin. But like I said earlier those numbers equal a salary cap increase of approximately $5million from where they stand right now.

As for those other players, Aucion, Beagle, Neuvirth and Gordon...you can expect them all to get minimum deals like they already have. They have done nothing at the NHL level and I don't expect any of them to do anything next year to warrant anything but minimum deals, or slightly higher...and that doesn't even account for the fact of whether they are in the NHL or the AHL and if they are in the NHL expect them to be replacing older players with higher salaries, thus lessening the salary cap burden.

Remember, with every player added to the roster someone needs to be subtracted.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

One more thing. JSchon, if the Caps have $4 million tied up in Steckel and Flash after next season they are a completely mismanaged team and are in HUGE problems. No more than $2 million should go to those two players and that figures probably a bit high and would put each player at a 50% raise and have Steckel earning $800K and Flash at $1.2 million.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

@freakinanpeakin

What do you mean by? Remember, with every player added to the roster someone needs to be subtracted.

I know we had the issue this year with the 50 contract max, but Fedorov, Kozlov, and Brashear are all most likely not coming back. So that opens 3 adds without a subtraction. If that is not what you are referencing can you please explaing what that means.

Posted by: ThePat | June 11, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

@ThePat, All I meant is that there are roster limits. You can't keep adding players to the roster and salary cap without taking into account the lost salaries from the players subtracted.

For instance, if all of a sudden there is an influx from Hershey of say Andrew Gordon, Beagle and Aucion, (just using the names JSchon mentioned of having to be re-signed and not trying to make any predictions), they are taking spots from players already on the roster. That means you are hypothetically likely to see Boyd Gordon, Bradley, and Fehr gone.

Gordon, Beagle and Aucion together earn about $1.5 million and Gordon, Fehr and Bradley earn a combined $2.5 million. so there is another saving of $1 million on the salary cap by making those three moves.

Ultimately, I just always get the feeling when people talk about the salary cap (no one specific) they fail to consider that it isn't always just cap space available, but cap space available + salary of the player they are replacing. That is why I see Komisarek stepping into Mo's roster spot as a possibility. Mo earns essentially $2 million and is likely to get a raise. I would rather take Komisarek at a $3 million or slightly more than Mo at $2.7 million. Especially where the net effect on the salary cap by having Komisarek vs. Mo is $500K to $750K.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

For any team to take on a $4 or $5 M or more contract, they will have to lose almost the same amount. There are 10 teams that had > $5 M in cap room. Most of those are on an internal budget (maybe all but 2 are on tight budgets).

This means that the cap will restrict the amount that players can command for their services. If a player could normally get $3M, they may have to settle for much less, or not play. I doubt if they'll not play. I also suspect that they will ask for the full $3 but quickly back down. Emory's rumored to only be making $1.3 next year though they talked for over a week. You know he didn't start at $2 M.

I suspect that the phones will be burning up this July with a lot of offers and counter offeres being made. Without being in the room, trying to predict what the team will look like next year and with the cap as it is will be a crap shoot.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 11, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

I don't see the fun in trying to figure out who is staying and who is going if the only ones that we've heard and/or confirmed are Brashear, Kozlov, and Federov.

I agree with gonchpup when he acknowledged that we still have a great team, barring our inexperience with the Penguins having additional players on their team who prefer to wear black and white striped tops and less padding and well, prefer to skate without a hockey stick and are inclined not to touch the puck. And I agree with Greg S. when he clearly point out that it's a crap shoot to try to figure out what the team is going to look like in late September/early October.

Can't we just sit tight until then? It's as bad as a kid the night before their birthday or Christmas, going through their wish list of what they wanted and what they hoped to get the next day. *shrug*

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | June 11, 2009 6:20 PM | Report abuse

I think we'll all enjoy guessing and discussing who will be here or not, and who we'd like to come on board or not.

My only request is that we treat the suggestions - any suggestions - with the understanding that 2/3 of the teams have cap issues. This tightening of the market means that players dreams of villas may need to be postponed.

Practially the movement of any one player will necessitate the moving of another unless the player moves totally out of the NHL system (ie, KHL or retires).

It's going to be a weird July.

Posted by: Greg S. | June 11, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Well, you can still buy a pretty nice villa with a contract for 6 mil over 4 years.

Posted by: fanohock1 | June 11, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse

JSchon is not far off on Flash at $2.5M and Steckel at $1.5M for 2010-11. I'll put that bet on the table right now. Steckel would have been a UFA after this past season, but one-upped for like $735K. He then made a nice little name for himself in the playoffs, and could have maybe earned more on the market. As a UFA after this coming season, since he is a forward, I can easily see him earning more, as a for instance, than Cooke (at $1.2M over two years). As for Flash, he has one more year at $735K and then he is RFA, one year from UFA. If he continues to improve, and let's say the pneumonia and stuff knocked him down last year, he could easily command a Laich-like deal, 3 years at $2.1M per.

The best cap value on the team, over the next two years, will be Varlamov and Carlson.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 7:36 PM | Report abuse

I should have, re: Steckel, since he is a "center," and since he has a very high faceoff winning %.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 7:39 PM | Report abuse

freakinandpeakin: I am the one who has been putting the cap space numbers. It is on Excel at work, so I can't post it again until Monday. I have the 23 players and there is $3M available, with Mo already gone (Feds and Kozzie too). I put a note awhile back that you can exchange player for player as you wish, for instance removing "Schultz or Jurcina $1.25M" for "Komisarek at $4M," and noting that such a move, while improving the team, uses every penny of cap space.

Disclaimer: This past year was "hard capped." Next year I believe is soft capped, so the Caps can overrun by the bonuses (Alzner for instance is $850K), then getting a reduction the following year (they can do it; I doubt they'd want to.)

I also agree with JSchon that slim chance Komisarek signs for less than Orpik ($3.75M).

ThePat tells me to "trust him," that Theo or Nyles will be gone. Yes, if I find the bottle with the genie when I go to New Smyrna Beach tomorrow, those will be two wishes and the third will be for three more wishes.

Take away Nyles and put Bourque; take away Theo and put Johnny; and you have an extra $7M to play with on top the $3M you have.

Then sign Komi in place of Schultz at cost of $3M delta and power forward your choice instead of promoting Beagle and it all fits.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

Please go look around and find players in the league that are earning $2.5 million and you explain how Flash, with his one season of 19 goals can be put into that conversation. Same goes for Steckel. Sorry, but a few playoff games does not all of a sudden equate to $1.5 million. You have completely over valued their value around the league. I like Steckel alot, but the simple fact of the matter is that players of his ilk can be replaced and every team has players like him.

That is the big problem with fans discussing this. Fans typically over value the players on their team, which is why you deal with Theo for Carter or Theo for Hejduk suggestions. Do you honestly think Tomas Fleischmann gets $2.5 million on the open market? If he did I would wish him well and laugh at the team that paid him that much. Same goes for Steckel and a $1.5 million offer.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Steckel, if he plays the same role he does now, will see around a mil. Probably closer to 800K. If he picks up his game significantly next year, then maybe he will get 1.5, but I dont see that happening.

As for Flash, he definetely hasnt done anything to make me think he will earn 2.5 In fact, I find him one of the more dispensable forwards.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 11, 2009 8:27 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

I'd love to see that spread sheet of yours, because going off of nhlnumbers.com your numbers seem off. No offense meant. :)

Just taking players under contract for next season the Caps have $9.4 million in space with 16 players (9 forwards, 5 d-men, 2 goalies) under contract that were primarily Caps last season (that includes Backstrom at his full bonus amount for next year and Alzner and Varlamov with the Caps).

As for your analysis of Jurcina or Schultz for Komisarek. I never suggested that and I don't think that works. I suggested Mo, who is poised to be earning $2.5 million. I just see Komisarek as a nice fit, especially in eating up Mo's cap space and the fact that Pothier is off the books the following season and Carlson could potentially step in at under $1 million. Then the following season sees Poti and his $3.5 off the ledger, just as Alzner and Carlson are potentially getting ready for their contracts.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 8:35 PM | Report abuse

freakin: First off, if Steckel hadn't signed with the Caps this past year, and was a UFA on July 1st, as a center with very good defense and high facoff %, I pointed out he was easily "worth Cooke." OK, let's take a poll here, you can only take one player on the Caps next year, Matt Cooke or Steckel. I really like Cooke but I will take Steckel. So, yes, if he puts up good numbers next year, and becomes UFA, Steckel will get $1.5M in a two-year deal for 2010-12. As for Flash, I said JSchon wasn't far off and he'd be in line for a Laich-like contract --> 1.7, then 2.1, then 2.5. Pick the number of years, and then pick the corresponding cumulative value.

I will still be here, God willing, in 2-3 years, so whichever one of us is wrong can buy the other an extra cold beer (they are always extra cold when they are free).

You told me to find players. Well, I even put those players in my note. Steckel > Cooke and Flash could be close to Laich.

As for Flash, he was decent value for this past year at $735K. I am assuming his illness knocked him back and he recovers this year to record 25-25-50 pts. At that point, at the end of next season, he is RFA, one year from UFA

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Sign Scuderi from the Pens.

Posted by: richmondphil | June 11, 2009 8:39 PM | Report abuse

freakin: Here, I found it further up:

Ovechkin 9.538
Nylander 4.875
Semin 4.600
Clark 2.633
Backstrom 2.400
Laich 2.067
Bradley 1.000
Fehr (Est - RFA) 0.900
Gordon (Est - RFA) 0.900
Osala (w/bonus) 0.850
Flash 0.725
Steckel 0.725
Beagle (w/bonus) 0.875
Aucoin 0.500
S/T 14 Forwards 32.588
Green 5.250
Poti 3.500
Pothier 2.500
Alzner (w/bonus) 1.675
Jurcina or Schultz (Est - RFA) 1.275
Erskine 1.275
Sloan (Est - UFA) 0.750
S/T 7 Defensemen 16.225
Theodore 4.500
Varlamov 0.850
S/T 2 Goalies 5.350
Total 23 Players 54.163
Cap Space (Est) 57.000
Available 2.837

If you let go of Mo (assumed in my spreadsheet) you have 2.8 available. If Bouw gets even only 6.5, it only works if you move Theo (replace w/Johnny at $1M) and Jurcina (replace then with Bouw) or if you can somehow make Nylander disappear into thin air and take his cap hit with him. I also heard the cap might be lower next year, but don't know how true that is.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 10, 2009 2:18 PM


So you trade or move or whatever my "slot" of Jurcina or Shutlz at $1.25M for next year, and replace them with Komisarek at $4.1M, and you are capped out.

This is just for next year; Jschon's discussion of Flash and Steckel has to do with the following year. I fully expect though that Steckel continues to improve enough to get $1.5M for 2010-11. Remember, the avg cap salary is $2.5M. This would make Steckel, as a 3rd line grinding center with good PK and above avg F/O %, 60% of an average player, as a UFA.

As a comparison, McPhee recently signed impending UFA Ersline to a two-year, $1.25M per contract.

You can't compare UFAs to RFAs; not in hockey, not in baseball, not in any sport. UFAs always earn more, all other things equal.

This is a fine discussion to have as I polish off the bottle of Howell Mountain 2006 Napa Zinfandel that accompanied my ribeye steak cooked out on the Weber.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 8:47 PM | Report abuse

@tominfl1

Steckel, Cooke, Flash and Laich are not equivalents. Not one of those players should be compared to what they bring to the ice and what is expected of them. Flash is suppose to be a top 6 forward, Laich is a high end third line/utility forward, Steckel is a role playing center with third and fourth line talent, and Cooke is an agitating winger. Just because they are all forwards doesn't mean they can or should be compared...I mean why not compare them to Ovechkin? I want other comparable players to Steckel and Flash and what is expected from them and what is delivered.

Off the top of my head I can think of Max Talbot the center for the Pens. He is actually ahead of Steckel in that he is two years younger than Steckel and has 30 goals to Steckel's 13 career goals. They both were very effective in this years playoffs. Talbot's salary for the next two seasons is just over $1 million. I just don't see Steckel out earning Talbot.

As for Flash...on a real quick look I came up with Alexander Steen. Fourth year in the league and had a down year this year, but was already signed to a contract before this season. After his first three years in the league, he had an 18 goal season and two 15 goal seasons (last season was an 8 goal season). He has a contract for $1.7 million and a cap hit of $1.2 million.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Initial response. You actually have Sloan earning $750,000!!!!! Are you sure you are drinking and not smoking something? :)

Sloan is a league minimum player. Beagle and Osala you can't assume they earn any bonuses. I'll give you Alzner and Backstrom on assuming those bonuses. Right there is almost an additonal $1 million.

I'd also be shocked to see Schultz or Jurcina earn that much. That would account for a 50% raise over what they are currently earning. You just aren't going to see raises like that for RFAs...it doesn't happen.

I'll create another $500,000 by saying the Caps won't carry two extra forwards and have Aucion in the minors.

Without doing the math, I have a 22 player roster and over $4 million in cap space. You may have been overestimating salaries to be conservative, but sorry that Sloan number is ridiculous...he isn't a full time NHL player, neither is Beagle or Osala. Salaries for those type of players are earned and not handed out before playing a game. You actually have Beagle and Osala earning more than Steckel did this past season.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 9:17 PM | Report abuse

freakin: You might be right. God never told me I had a monopoly on "right." He just gave me a very nice aptitude with numbers and an ego to match.

I said last year, end of season, that Laich would out-point Kozlov in 2008-09. People here thought I was smoking something. Guess what? OK, does that mean I'll be right on this? No.

But I will bet you in cold beer (no; extry cold) that Flash and Steckel combined in 2010-11 sign for closer (cap value) to my $3.6M (1.5+2.1) than whatever number you wish to wager.

We can quit pi$$ing about it now (before the ladies start their comments) and table this item until July, 2010.

You might forget; I never do.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 9:17 PM | Report abuse

@caps28fan, I think the plan was for Gus to play in Sweden's AHL equivalent this past season and the Swedish Elite League this one. I doubt he's here before 10-11.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | June 11, 2009 9:24 PM | Report abuse

I got no problem with a beer bet and I guarantee I will forget. :)

I think my whole thing started with JSchon saying a combined $4 million for the two players and I said $2 million. I could see $2.2 million for the two.

I'm not hedging on the bet at all and you will clearly win the bet if Flash comes out with a 25 to 30 goal season next year...but my guess is we see something comparable to this year.

As for pi$$ing about it. I was never agitated, but we surely don't want to upset the ladies. ;)

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Interesting posts on the impending free agents.

Are Cap fans going to be counting down the days until Nylander's NMC expires?

Posted by: CapsFan75 | June 11, 2009 9:42 PM | Report abuse

freakin: By the way, your comment, "you actually have Osala and Beagle earning more than Steckel did this past season.

Ahem (me puffing chest). The values I posted for Osala, Beagle and Steckel are all signed contracts for next season (2009-10). You may question McPhee if you don't like them. :) :) :)

BTW, The Caps can't save $500K by having Aucoin in the minors. He has an NHL deal for next season.

Wherever I deviate from actual, signed contracts, I put a note for estimate (est).

You can only question the values on the estimated contracts. Feel free to replace your own value for Jurciona, Fehr, whomever.

I agree with you that if you have 22 players, not 23, which you're permitted under the basic agreement, you would save $750K - $1M. However, I very strongly disagree, perhaps my strongest disagreement yet in our discussions, that my estimate for Sloan signing as UFA is overvalued at $750K. If Erskine is worth $1.25M, the Caps will easily pay Sloan $750K. We have another beer bet on this one; keep it going on you will be flying to Orlando next year with a full case.

God, I love this, because this is exactly what the world's largest defense contractor pays me to do for a living, argue to the DEATH on numbers, big money, we're talking billions sometimes, to project future cost based on past performance, a learning curve if you will, and, let's remember we're all friends here, the trolls have gone away, and we have the same objective; (no, it's not like William Faulkner, to write the longest sentence ever;) numbers to me are like napalm in the morning to others, and I can promise you they have trained me to listen and say I will consider what you suggest but to offer rejoinder if I refuse to yield. BTW, you can't save on Aucoin - he has an NHL contract.

As Chuck Thompson used to say, "Ain't the beer cold." :)

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 9:51 PM | Report abuse

CapsFan75, 553804 minutes! :-P
freakinandpeakin & tominfl, Please, don't spare our delicate sensibilities. By all means, I was enjoying that.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | June 11, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

well, you may not want to puff your chest out to much and get a wiff of your own napalm. :)

The contracts you cited for Osala and Beagle stated that YOU included bonuses. Those bonuses don't necessarily count towards this season's salary cap. I conceded that the bonuses of Backstrom and Alzner are likely to be earned, but those of Osala and Beagle won't. I just said I don't think you can assume earned bonuses for them, unless you wanted to take an overly conservative point of view. I just don't think it is reasonable to project that Osala and/or Beagle will reach the stats that would have them earn their bonuses.

As for Aucion, it doesn't matter if it is a one way or two way deal. A salary doesn't count towards the salary cap unless the player is with the NHL team. An NHL contract just means he earns his NHL salary whether he is in the minors or with the big club. It is a loophole that allows players on NHL contracts to not be counted towards the cap and I believe certain teams like Philly and perhaps Toronto have taken advantage of this loophole to open up cap space. And why Aucion's salary didn't count towards the cap this past season for the games he was not on the roster.

I'll take the Sloan/Erskine bet too, but a nice case in NYC is even nicer. :) Sloan and Erskine are basically the same age and Sloan has played 26 NHL games as an emergency call-up. Erskine has been a top 6 defensemen for the Caps for the past two seasons and has been in the organization for 3 seasons and this was his 7th season appearing in the NHL. They aren't in the same category of what players should earn.
There is no way that after 26 NHL games he gets a raise to $750K.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 10:14 PM | Report abuse

Don't worry jmu_capsgirl I got you covered. :)

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

An additional point about Aucion's salary. His not counting towards the cap is why this is the last season for Nylander unless he turns it around. Once his NMC expires the Caps can send him to the minors and clear his cap number off the Caps ledger. The will still owe him the full amount of the contract, but it won't count towards the cap.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 10:20 PM | Report abuse

jmu: By the way, my youngest daughter is near your age - almost 24.

Get this, last night she went out to the beach around midnight and she met the #46 draft pick (2nd Round) in the NHL 2004 draft. He was fishing with another hockey player from the Netherlands.

She (my daughter) bought a new car today, some little Honda, so I guess that makes me a "car grandfather."

The 28 year-old in back home; the 26 year-old is married and getting a Ph.D. in clinical psychology; and the 23 year-old is finding her way.

Meanwhile, thanks to me, and season tix back at the Cap Centre, and street hockey in front of the house, they all enjoy the game.

If I ever become a real grandfather, my first task is to take that toddler to a hockey game. May God bless me if that is His way.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 10:22 PM | Report abuse

:-PPPPP By the way, I may not work for a defense contractor (;-P), but I've got my own spreadsheet, based off nhlnumbers, nhlscap, and my own mathematical and general nerdiness. (GoogleDocs ate my wonderful formatting, but it works)
There's even a handy-dandy roster calculator off to the side if you want to plug in your desired roster.
http://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=r3EuQ8RSc-7uIaTYr64oLig
And for guessing purposes, any RFA earning less than 660,000 has to be offered a 10% raise, between 660,001 and 1 million, a 5% raise, over a million, no raise necessary.
Although as much as I love my own spreadsheet, this one: http://www.capgeek.com/cap_calculator.php?Team=30 is much better.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | June 11, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

freakin: There's no way the Caps are paying a feisty guy like Aucoin the full $500K (a measley salary by NHL standards) and then dumping him back in Hershey.

Another bet we have: I say Aucoin spends not one minute next season in Hershey. Not one bleedin minute.

You are right about the bonuses. Criminy, freakin, I put a disclaimer up above saying this was a soft cap season and you can go over the cap on risk of the bonuses. Criminy, freakin, I recently did a cost estimate at work where my "risk" was like 400 million dollars. You think I'd miss then a risk on Beagle's potential bonus at like a hundred K? We're talking peanuts here on the cap, peanuts, as Charles Schultz used to say from his home in lovely Santa Rosa, California.

Remember, the Caps don't want to overrun from bonuses because they get docked the following year - when Backie and Semin are due for new deals.

freakin: Make you reservation now while the airline deals are cheap for summer, 2010. You can then buy me the case of beer when you get here. This is a great time of year down here - nice and hot and humid. Tomorrow is off day so I will pack the cooler and get at the beach at like 6 am and not leave until 5 pm.

If you've got more - bring it on, brother.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

JSchon, you're an idiot

Like or not, Poti is the second best defenseman the Caps got. Also you keep dreaming about the trade on your mind because that's the only place it will ever take place.

This team almost beat the team that is one game away from winning the Cup. The Caps clearly are the second best team in the Eastern Conference. They're missing a couple players, especially on defense but even with that defensive deficiency, they almost beat the best team in the east for the last two years.

The Caps just went back to the playoffs last year, yo do NOT go from missing the playoffs to winning the Cup in two year not in the salary cap era. This isn't 1994 when you could trade for and sign as many ex-Edmondton Oiler players as you could afford and go after the Cup. It's like in racing, if you're running 30th out of 43 cars, your immediate goal is to run somewhere in the 20th next week. After you get to 20th, you wanna run in the top ten.

It took the NY Islanders 6 or 7 years before they could win all those Cups in the 80's, took Gretzy Oilers 5 years before they won their first Cup, took Lemieux's Pens 6 years before winning their first Cup. OV's Caps just completed their 4th season. I know it's a great source of annoyance to most of you that Crosby is about to win his first but just because he and his very able sidekick Malkin are in their second Cup finals, doesn't mean the Caps should do some of the crazy stuff suggested daily on here.

IT TAKES TIME!!!

Posted by: joek443 | June 11, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse

tominfl, Yep, she's a year older than I am. I've already told my dad if he buys my future kids Isles jerseys I'll severely restrict his "Grandpa Time". Same with my brother and the Avs. I had to go look the kid up. Adam Pineault? I guess I saw him play a few times for the Wildcats when I went home to Canada senior year of HS & freshman year of college. He obviously didn't leave much of an impression.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | June 11, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

tominfli I believe Aucoin has a one way for next year so i think your right about him being with the caps

Posted by: wendel2 | June 11, 2009 10:51 PM | Report abuse

jmu: You're spreadsheet matches mine except I put in estimates for the unsigned players. Some people think my 50% increases as RFA for Jurcina and Schultz are too high; I suppose i would argue back that Mo got like 100% last year as RFA.

Yes, you guessed the player. The word I got on this when my daughter emailed me at work at like noon today was he is playing in the Blackhawks system. She just brought the new little Honda home and then took off.

I love them all more than I love the Caps. More than I even love numbers. And no matter what they do or where they go, I MADE THEM.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 10:55 PM | Report abuse

I may be mistaken, but I believe Aucion's contract was a one way deal this past season too. In any event, I don't think the Caps are going to let Aucion earning $500K determine if he is on the team or not. If he is on the team he will have earned his spot...which he didn't do this past season. You do know he isn't a 21 year old who is still developing, he is 30 and has maxed out his talent and his talent makes him a minor league call-up. He has been playing professional hockey for 9 seasons and has played 65 NHL games, including one season of 38 games. And I just don't buy that a guy turning 31 in November is all of a sudden going to be on an NHL roster for 82 games.

In other words, I'll take your bet that Aucion won't see one minute of ice time in Hershey this next season. That is a gimmie.

I understand that it is a soft cap this season. I just don't think you can hold back dollars on the projection of every rookie contract a team has. You will be leaving money on the table that in all reasonable analysis will never be earned. That is why I say you need to account for Backstrom and Alzner's bonuses in next years cap, because they are likely to be earned.

You are right that Beagle's bonus alone is peanuts, but add on Osala's bonus and Aucion's contract, and--in my opinion--your over assessment of Sloan's contract and all of a sudden there is an additional $1.5 to play with...or 4.3 million still available with a full roster. That means if you add a Komisarek at $4million (which I don't think he will get) and subtract Schultz or Jurcina's $1.275 million the Caps will still have around $1.5 million available on the cap and a full roster.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

All that a one way contract means is that the player will earn their NHL salary whether they are in the AHL or NHL. It has nothing to do with where a player plays or what the cap effect is. Nylander and his contract are in Washington and not Hershey because he has a NMC, which prevents him from being sent to the minors and his salary taken off the cap.

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 11:01 PM | Report abuse

As a complete aside, how much am I loving the fact that the new GM Reinvention commercial is using the song "Interstate 5" by the Wedding Present. Love the song!

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 11:03 PM | Report abuse

freakin: I'll grant you cap space next year starts out, right now, between $2.5-4M depending on the actual cap.

If Beagle and Osala play all year, they'll earn the bonuses; if others play in their stead, those players would then earn their own bonuses. I tried to put a list together so we would have talking points from which to start; if you and I are only $1M apart out of $57M, that's hardly much difference. Peace, dude. I've really accomplished my goal, which was to point out clearly that dreams of Bouwmeester are unrealistic w/o either Nyles or Theo taking a cap hike.

Man, what a day. First, a full shift at the rocket factory. Did a few estimates, earned a few bucks. Stopped at the grocery, bought ribeyes, cut the lawn, popped open the zinfandel, waited for wifey-poo to cook dinner, ate and drank, went online, made a margarita, made a really good friend in freakin, and now time to sack-out cuz I want to see the New Smyrna Beach, FL sunrise tomorrow 6:15 am.

Ain't the beer cold; ain't the ice rink even colder; and ain't the friends warm.

Posted by: tominfl1 | June 11, 2009 11:11 PM | Report abuse

Cheers. I won't belabor the point, but bonuses only exist in rookie contracts. So if the Caps call up someone like Aucion or Giroux there will be no possibility of a bonus.

I'm looking forward to my three beers! :)

Posted by: freakinandpeakin | June 11, 2009 11:16 PM | Report abuse

I'm an idiot?

Is that the best you can do joe?

I know I'm an idiot...

Posted by: JSchon | June 12, 2009 12:25 AM | Report abuse

@freakinandpeakin

I agree about your comment on Aucion and don't think that it is a lock that he plays all next year with the Caps. He will have to earn the roster spot and if Feds does return next year (as it is rumored that the Caps are trying to re-sign) that would seem unlikely.

Posted by: MReilly9 | June 12, 2009 8:15 AM | Report abuse

freakin, Aucoin's deal was two-way the first season, one-way the second. Not sure if that affects your "he won't be here" theory. And bonuses are counted in a player's cap hit regardless of whether or not the player earns them. I know the numbers in my sheet are cap hits, not salaries.

Posted by: jmu_capsgirl | June 12, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Thanks to everyone for all of their knowledge of salary cap and numbers. Although, I wish you guys would've tried to make room for Brashear somewhere in there :-) The game is just more interesting w him in there. I know, that's asking too much. Guess the Caps won't have an enforcer next season?

Posted by: capsfan01 | June 12, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

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