Posts Tagged Pittsburgh Penguins

Top 10 “Value” Free Agent Signings

With how rare it is to acquire talent in the NHL, most teams find themselves coming out of the offseason with their pockets emptied by free agents and the ridiculous prices that the market sets on them.

Once free agency hits, mediocre players become hot commodities and teams usually overpay to get them.

Sometimes, however, good deals are signed and both parties come away winners.

Let’s take a closer look at the top 10 “value” contracts that were signed during this offseason.

Honourable Mentions:

James Reimer – Toronto Maple Leafs – Two-years, $4.6 million / $2.3 million cap hit

With career numbers of a .914 save percentage and a 2.84 goals against average, Reimer has established himself as a very capable goalie in the league. While he may not be a true number one goaltender, he is at worst a goalie who is good enough to play 30-40 games in a split role. With a two-year contract for only $2.3 million per season, the Leafs should have no problem finding a trade partner if need be.

Lars Eller – Montreal Canadiens – Four-years, $14 million / $3.5 million cap hit

Never eclipsing 30 points in any of his five seasons in the league, Eller has yet to establish himself as a reliable forward in the NHL. With that said, this past postseason Eller finished behind only Subban in scoring, with 13 points in 17 games. At only $3.5 million until the age of 29, the Canadiens might have gotten themselves a steal if that kind of production continues.

On to the top 10.

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NHL News: Senators Re-sign Lehner … Penguins Re-sign Spaling

  • Ottawa Senators: The Senators re-signed goaltender Robin Lehner to three-year, $6.675 million contract. The deal carries a $2.225 million salary cap hit, with a salary breakdown of: $1.5 million, $2.025 million and $3.15 million.
  • Pittsburgh Penguins: The Penguins have avoided salary arbitration with forward Nick Spaling. The deal is for two-years with a cap hit of $2.2 million.

Robin Lehner

Nick Spaling

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NHL News: Spaling, Green, Gardiner, King and Halischuk

  • Ken Campbell: Nick Spaling filed for $2.85 million, with the Penguins submitting $1.65 million.
  • Tom Gulitti: The Devils signed Andy Green to a five year, $25 million contract extension, $5 million in each season.
  • Stephen Whyno: Jake Gardiner salary breakdown: $4.65 this year, $4.05 million for the next three years and $3.45 million in 2018-19.
  • Helene St. James: Dwight King avoided arbitration with the Kings and signed a three-year deal with a cap hit of $1.95 million.
  • Winnipeg Jets: The Jets signed Matt Halischuk to a one-year, two-way deal worth $750,000.

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NHL Rumors II: Penguins and Sutter … Weekes on Brodeur

  • Shelly Anderson: Hearing that the Penguins and Brandon Sutter are making progress.
  • Will DePaoli of Inside Pittsburgh Sports: The Penguins and Sutter have talked about both short and long-term contracts over the past couple weeks. A source said the Penguins think they are close on a deal and that they “should” have it done this week. Sutter’s agent has recommended that he take a one-year deal and test unrestricted free agency next summer. One source has said the Penguins are looking at long-term deal and have offered a four-year deal.
  • Luke Fox of SportsNet: Kevin Weekes on Martin Brodeur:

    “Does he want to play with Ondrej Pavelec in Winnipeg? I don’t know. Other than that, where’s he going? [Toronto] only works if they move Reimer.

    “Listen. If I’m Marty, I’ve played a long time. My first and last name is all over the record books. I’ve made a ton of money. I’ve had an impact on the game.

    “He’s been the guy the whole time; he’s always been the guy. He wants to be the guy every night. He doesn’t want to back anybody up. So where’s he going to play?

    “It’s all about weighing the fit versus the opportunity. I don’t see it. That’s not to say it can’t present itself. Heaven forbid, there’s an injury or someone has a slow start. Maybe. Aside from that, right now, I don’t really see it. And that’s not a slight against him. It’s just the marketplace.”

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NHL Rumors II: Braun, Leafs, Spaling, Stoa and Nelson

  • Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area: The Sharks have started contract extension talks with Justin Braun, though nothing is imminent.

    “Nothing yet. We will be talking more later in the month after Justin’s wedding,” Neil Sheehy said via email.

    Braun has one-year left on his deal before becoming a UFA. He’ll make $1.25 million this year.

  • David Pagnotta: Expect some movement from the Maple Leafs in the near future.
  • Seth Rorabaugh: Nick Spaling’s agent, Pat Morris, said there is nothing new to report on contract talks with the Penguins. Arbitration hearing set for July 31st. Both sides will exchange their briefs today.
  • Alex Prewitt: The Capitals have shown “no interest” in re-signing UFA Ryan Stoa according to Stoa’s agent. Stoa is now considering Europe.
  • Brian Compton: Islanders coach Jack Capuano said yesterday that he is a little hesitant to move Brock Nelson from center to wing, but knows what could potentially happen if he plays on the top line.

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Quick Hits: Arbitration, Winnik, Tatar, Stats and Brassard

  • Luke Fox of SportsNet: Remaining arbitration hearing dates: Jimmy Hayes (FLA) – July 29th, Nick Spaling (PIT) – July 31st, Michael Frolik (WIN) – July 31st (update – just signed a one-year, $3.3 million deal)Dwight King (LA) – Aug. 1st, Justin Fontaine (MIN) – Aug. 1st, P.K. Subban (MON) – Aug. 1st.
  • Alex Seixeiro: Daniel Winnik said on the Fan 590 that the deal with the Maple Leafs came together quickly over the past couple days.
  • Helene St. James: Due to Tomas Tatar’s December birthday, he’ll have one-year of restricted free agency after his contract expires in 2017.
  • Allan Walsh: One NHL GM said that advanced stats are now central when evaluating prospects and ranking players for the draft.
  • Renaud Lavoie: Derick Brassard’s deal with the Rangers contains a limited no-trade clause. Salary breakdown: $7 million, $6 million, $5 million, $3.5 million and $3.5 million.

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NHL Rumors II: Wings, Oilers, Hurricanes and Zacha

  • Brendan Savage of MLive: Danny DeKeyser still doesn’t have a deal with the Red Wings, but he isn’t concerned.

    “There won’t be any problems,” DeKeyser told Fox 17 while in Portage to play in annual Western Michigan Hockey Alumni and Friends golf outing. “It’ll be done before camp.

    “So, no one needs to worry about that.”

  • Bruce McCurdy of the Edmonton Journal: McCurdy looks at Penguins RFA center Brandon Sutter after reports from Will DePoali’s (Inside Pittsburgh Sports) sources saying that the Oilers and Avalanche are paying attention to the situation. The Penguins have offered Sutter three different deals, but he’s looking for a one-year deal. The Penguins re-signed Marcel Goc to a one-year deal, and added Nick Spaling to help fill out their bottom-six. The Penguins could be looking for winger, someone like David Perron in return for Sutter, but that may be too high a price for the Oilers.
  • Chip Alexander: Hurricanes coach Peters said that their power play could consist of Jeff Skinner, Eric Staal and Elias Lindholm, with Alex Semin playing the right point with Justin Faulk or Ryan Murphy.
  • Zdenek Janda: Top Czech prospect Pavel Zacha will likely be leaving the Czech to play junior in the CHL, probably in the OHL.

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Salary Cap Outlook – The Metropolitan Division

Continuing on from where we left off with the Atlantic Division, it’s now time to take a look at the cap situations of the other Eastern Conference teams in the Metropolitan (what a weird name) Division.

*All figures according to CapGeek.com, with the Salary Cap being $69 million*

*2015-16 cap space does not include current unsigned RFA’s*

Part 2: Eastern Conference – Metropolitan Division

Carolina Hurricanes

2014-15 Season:

Total players under NHL contract: 20 (11 forwards, 7 defensemen, 2 goalies)
Cap Payroll: $63,080,000
Overages: None
Cap Space: $5,920,000
RFA’s Remaining: None
Players on LTIR: None

Overview: With no RFA’s left to sign, it remains to be seen if the Hurricanes will look to fill out the other forward spot from within, or make a move onto some of the remaining UFA’s. One such player could be Andrei Loktionov, who finished out last season with the team and still finds himself as a UFA. Carolina is in good cap shape heading into next season, despite paying four forwards over $5.75 million (Eric Staal, Alex Semin, Jordan Staal, and Jeff Skinner).

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NHL Rumors III: Stamkos, Maple Leafs, Sharks and Penguins

  • Stephen Whyno in the Toronto Star: Lightning Steven Stamkos will be a UFA in 2016 and thought of playing for the Maple Leafs could be there.

    “We’ll see what happens. It’s a couple years away,” Stamkos said Wednesday. “Right now I’m focused on what I have to do to win in Tampa, and I think we’ve really established ourselves as a team that can compete in upcoming years.

    “For me, that’s the important thing is getting a chance to win. It looks like we’re going to have that chance for a couple years.”

    Stamkos added that talk of him possibly coming to Toronto in two years will “absolutely not” be a distraction for him.

    “I try not to focus about that stuff,” he said. “I think that’s the great thing about playing in Tampa is hockey isn’t the mecca that it is here in Toronto and you can kind of go about your life and kind of get away from the game when you need to.”

    Stamkos added that he enjoys playing big hockey markets like Toronto.

    “I’m from around here and grew up cheering for the Leafs, so any time I get a chance to come back here I enjoy it, and any time I get a chance to play against the Leafs it’s fun,” he said. “It’s also fun beating them, too, because a lot of my friends are still Leaf fans.”

  • Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area: Kurz expects the Sharks to start the season with Antti Niemi and Alex Stalock in net. If they were going to trade Niemi, it likely would have happened already. Niemi has one-year left on his deal at $3.8 million. It’s possible that a team during the season could look at Niemi as a backup or potential starter. Niemi has won a Stanley Cup and was a Vezina Finalist just over a year ago.

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NHL Rumors I: Blackhawks, Gardiner, Penguins and Jets

Scott Powers of ESPN: It seems unlikely that Kevin Hayes will sign with the Blackhawks. One of the reasons he hasn’t signed is that he may not see a quick path the NHL with the Blackhawks. It could take a year or two become a regular in their lineup. The Blackhawks have drafted a bunch of college players in the past, and they may start looking to sign them during their sophomore and junior seasons so that they don’t run into potential losing them to free agency after their senior year. The Blackhawks have until August 15th to sign Hayes to an entry-level deal or he will become a UFA.

“I’m sure the Blackhawks are going to be disappointed if [Hayes] walks for free,” said an NHL agent who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “It may motivate them to accelerate the process. In Kevin Hayes’ case, he was coming off a so-so junior year. I don’t think they made a mistake with him.”

Chris Johnston: Will be interesting to see how yesterday’s front office events impact their Jake Gardiner contract talks. They had been close on a short-term deal.

Will DePaoli: The Penguins had held talks with the David Booth before he decide to sign with the Maple Leafs. They didn’t present him with an offer.

Ken Wiebe: Source saying the Jets were among the teams talking with Booth before he signed with the Leafs.

 

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