Navigating the Salary Cap is probably one of the more important tasks for any general manager to have. Teams that can avert total cap chaos by walking the tightrope of inking players to deals that match their value (or compensate for future value without breaking the bank) remain successful. Those that don’t see struggles and front office changes.
PHR will look at every NHL team and give a thorough look at their cap situation heading into the 2017-18 season. This will focus more on those players who are integral parts of the roster versus those who may find themselves shuttling between the AHL and NHL. All cap figures are courtesy of CapFriendly.
Current Cap Hit: $68,168,560 (under the $75MM Upper Limit)
D Oscar Fantenberg (One year remaining, $925K)
This is not a very young team and the only player to have an entry-level deal is Fantenberg, who is the 25-year-old blueliner, who signed a one-year, two-way deal earlier this year. The defenseman has never played in the U.S. before, but he opened some eyes recently when he found himself on the Kings’ roster to travel to Japan for some exhibition games, suggesting he has a legitimate chance to earn a starting job on the team’s defense.
One Year Remaining, Non-Entry-Level
F Mike Cammalleri ($1MM, UFA)
F Jordan Nolan ($950K, UFA)
F Nick Shore ($925K, RFA)
D Christian Folin ($800K, UFA)
D Derek Forbort ($650K, RFA)
D Kevin Gravel ($650K, RFA)
G Darcy Kuemper ($650K, UFA)
F Nic Dowd ($640K, UFA)
Have originally started his career in L.A., Cammalleri returns to his former team after a three-year stint in New Jersey, which came after a three-year stint in Calgary and after a three-year stint in Montreal. The 35-year-old wing isn’t the same guy who put up many 20-plus goal seasons, but the hope is he can fill a back-six line for the coming season at a low price. Nolan will fight for a fourth-line role, while Gravel may also have to fight for a bottom pairing on defense, especially since he is still waiver-exempt.
Shore is one of those young players the Kings hope will have a breakout year. The 24-year-old wing has not been able to put it all together yet. He finished last year with six goals and 11 assists for 17 points, but is capable of more if he can put it all together.
Forbert played on the first line a year ago and managed to play in all 82 games. The team now hopes the 25-year-old starts to cash in on the team’s promise when they drafted him in the first round back in 2010. His defensive proficiency is designed to allow others to focus on offense more. The team also hopes Folin, signed away from Minnesota this offseason, will grab one of the last couple of defensive openings. The 26-year-old played 51 games for the Wild last season, but has had trouble getting a full-time role.