Many NHL-drafted but unsigned players are set to become free agents today if they don’t sign within the next four hours. Today, The Athletic’s Tarik El-Bashir confirmed two Capitals prospects will hit the open market: Czech defenseman Martin Has and Canadian defender Dru Krebs.
Krebs, the brother of Buffalo Sabres forward Peyton Krebs, was selected in the sixth round of the 2021 NHL Draft. While he had a strong year in 2020-21 in limited action due to COVID, the 2021-22 campaign was nightmarish for him, finishing with just 19 points in 66 games with the WHL’s Medicine Hat Tigers and a staggering -58 rating. He rebounded nicely this season, but the 20-year-old’s flaws displayed after his draft year likely signal an NHL future isn’t in the cards.
Has, 22, was a member of Washington’s 2019 draft class. The fifth-round pick played unsigned in the Capitals organization this year, registering 12 points in 50 games as a member of the ECHL’s South Carolina Stingrays.
- Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan told reporters today that the team hasn’t begun speaking to pending restricted free agent defenseman Martin Fehervary about an extension yet, but “expects discussions to pick up soon.” Fehervary, Washington’s second-round pick in 2018, is coming off his entry-level deal. In his sophomore season with the Caps, the 23-year-old consistently played a top-four role and posted 16 points in 67 games.
- MacLellan also said center Nic Dowd underwent core surgery recently, aiming to fix an ailment that was bugging him near the end of the season. Dowd is expected to recover in time for training camp in September. The 33-year-old bottom-six center has two seasons remaining at a cap hit of $1.3MM and is coming off a career-high 13 goals.
- Lastly, in more positive news for Washington, MacLellan revealed the injury Swedish defenseman Rasmus Sandin sustained near the end of this year’s Men’s World Championship isn’t serious and carries no long-term concern. Sandin was electric for Washington after coming over from Toronto near the end of the season, posting 15 points in 19 games and averaging nearly 23 minutes per game. The 23-year-old former first-round pick will look to step into a consistent top-four role with the Caps next season, potentially alongside John Carlson.