Offseason changes. You are the GM.
I think most everyone agrees that GMGM does not get resigned and Oates should be canned. In a perfect world Dick Patrick's position is filled by a hockey guy.
This is about players. Who stays? Who goes? And most importantly, why?
Mojo. He gets shopped. He is weak on the puck and cannot hit the net if his life depended on it. Bye.
Brouwer. Great season for him. I like the guy but I think they can move him and upgrade the 2RW position either from in the club or via FA.
Green. He gets shopped. His defensive game is way too hit and miss (no pun intended) in this lineup. He did play pretty well when Hillen came back and paired with the right guy he can be effective as long as he stays healthy. And that is a whole other concern. Shop him.
Penner walks. I think he is out no matter what. He is a West coast guy and was a little pissed to be here in the first place. I really wanted the Caps to pick him up last offseason for his size and experience but he isn't interested in playing here so best of luck to him.
Volpatti. He doesn't fit the team or maybe the NHL. Move him to Hershey or package him. Bye.
Erskine. I have been a fan of his but it's time for him to go. He is going into the last year of his deal and he is too slow. His toughness is good but the team can get younger and have that too. Bye Big John.
Hillen. Too often injured. Too old. Package him if possible. Bye.
Strachen. UFA. Career AHLer. Bye.
Brouillette. UFA. Another career minor leaguer. Bye.
Halak. UFA. Buh bye. Wanted to play, didn't want to play in St.Louis. Meh. They didn't need a goalie to begin with and with Grubauer seemingly ready for the NHL, best of luck Halak.
3rd line. The best line on the club and the most consistent. Ward and Fehr have one more year on their contracts and Chimera two and then they are UFA's. Give them one more year and see how it pans out. If they can play the cycle game like they do consistently the Caps need that.
Grabo. He is a must sign. They have been searching for a solid 2C for years now and he is the best option right now. I think he wants to be here so let's get that done.
1LW, 1st pair D. Carlzner is a good pair but if I had my way they would be the 2nd pair.
I'm sure I am missing something.
Keep brouwer and buyout laich. Other than that it looks ok.
I am no Mojo defender but how about play the guy at center where he belongs before totally giving up on him? If he doesn't work out at center then dangle him at the TD.
Assuming a new, competant coaching staff is hired:
- Extend Grabo 3 years/$14M
- Trade Mike Green for Jason Garrison
- Trade Erskine for whatever you can get
- Trade Johansson + futures for Evander Kane
- Sign Brendan Morrow 1 year/$1.5M
- Sign Brodeur/Thomas/Nabokov/Elliot/Giguere/Gustavsson/Bryzgalov to 1 year/$1.5M (whoever will take the deal); if not, move on to Clemmensen/Greiss/Dubnyk for < $1M
- Sign Stephane Robidas 1 year/$2.5M
- Sign Anton Belov 2 years/$4M
- Wilson, Carrick, Brown, Wey to Hershey
- Play the Russians at their most comfortable positions
Alex Ovechkin ($9.538m) / Nicklas Backstrom ($6.700m) / Troy Brouwer ($3.667m)
Evander Kane ($5.250m) / Mikhail Grabovski ($4.667m) / Evgeny Kuznetsov ($0.900m)
Jason Chimera ($2.000m) / Brooks Laich ($4.500m) / Joel Ward ($3.000m)
Brenden Morrow ($1.500m) / Michael Latta ($0.605m) / Eric Fehr ($1.500m)
Aaron Volpatti ($0.575m) / Jay Beagle ($0.900m) /
Karl Alzner ($2.800m) / John Carlson ($3.967m)
Jason Garrison ($4.600m) / Dmitry Orlov ($2.000m)
Anton Belov ($2.000m) / Stephane Robidas ($2.500m)
Jack Hillen ($0.700m) /
Braden Holtby ($1.850m)
Backup UFA ($1.500m)
(estimations for 2014-15)
SALARY CAP: $71,100,000; CAP PAYROLL: $67,218,462; BONUSES: $850,000
CAP SPACE (23-man roster): $3,881,538
I would not buy out Laich unless they are convinced that he is permenently impaired. He does bring an element of desire to the team and when healthy is a big part.
I like MJ and Brouwer. But I think they need to be moved simply b/c we have other guys who need their ice time that have higher upside in Kuznetsov and Wilson. We have Brown and Latta who need to get in the lineup as well.
Its imperative we bring Grabovski back or a #2C from the outside.
Guys like Penner and Halak are as good as gone.
Beagle has had a tough year all around. But I'd keep him around. He has great work ethic and brings a vet presence on the 4th line.
I'd move Fehr to the wing in the top 6 and bring in a #3C from the outside. I'm a big fan of David Bolland. Steve Ott would work too. A natural center with some edge that is good at faceoffs.
The big thing is the D. Needs to be addressed externally. I'd bring in 1 top 4 guy and a 5/6 guy as well if I could. Orlov/Carlzner is definite. Green depends on his contract situation.
Hillen needs to be the #7 dman while Carrick, Wey and Schmidt need to hone their craft in the AHL.
Laich buy-out (unless you get 100% confirmation from team doctors that his injury troubles are behind him, which is very unlikely)
Wilson if you don't get the asking price you want for Brouwer/Ward)
Ovechkin (obviously only for ridiculous overpayment)
Backstrom (only overpayment)
Grabovski (salary, term he's asking)
Penner (salary, term he's asking)
Hillen (cheap #7D)
Niskanen (explore asking price)
Moulson (explore asking price)
Cammalleri (explore asking price)
Stastny (if reasonable)
Morrow (if reasonable)
Boychuk (highly unlikely that he'd be available but they have lots of D and get Seidenberg back)
Daley (explore the market)
Jackman (explore the market)
Methot (explore the market)
Is it true that the caps will be 17 mil under the cap?
Goalies: Don't resign Halak, but rather go for a vet keeper to back up Holtby and serve as a place holder for Grubauer.
Defense: Float Green's name, but rather keep if the return is not much. Trade Erskine, still think you might get a late rounder in return for him. Make strong effort to obtain that elusive top pairing D-man, who actually plays D either via trade or free agency.
Forwards: Just get MAJO the **** out of here. Also Joel Ward is currently having a career year so his trade value will never be higher. Ward will be in the last year of his contract next season and will turn 34 in December, I'd say dangle him and see what the return might be. Ward's departure will allow Wilson to move up the depth chart and get more ice time. Caps would be trading Ward from a position of strength at RW (Brouwer/Fehr/Wilson). Get a centerman that's good at taking face-offs.
Coaching: Pry Johnson away from SJ and bring him back as an Assistant to coach the D.
Major concern for this team is that even with a change in management and coaching, if the team in 12 months finds themselves in the same position as they do now and Ovechkin has a similar type season, his value to other teams may drop dramatically.
This won't be popular, but I would trade the 1st this year along with Green or Johansson for a significant defensive upgrade. As far as UFAs go, I would resign Grabo.
How long until the Shea Weber talk starts? Or did it just start...?
Salary wise we are in excellent position to do whatever we want essentially. This is a major change from the last 6 years or so where we've had little flexibility.
2 2nds (one is Buffalo's from Neuvirth trade)
MJ, Brouwer, Ward, Green, perhaps Carrick or Barber
We have prospects, picks, roster players, forwards/dmen..etc Whatever someone wants we pretty much have it available.
Green's injured. Again! Good luck trading him this offseason.
Okay, I'll go all out in this exercise.
Trade the Russian Army (Ovechkin, Kuznetsov and Orlov) to Carolina (they can reunite with Semin) for the Staal brothers and Justin Faulk.
Trade Mike Green, MAJO and 2014 first to NYR for Marc Staal.
_________- Backstrom - Brouwer
Laich - E. Staal - Fehr
Chimera - J. Staal - Wilson
_________ - Beagle/Latta - Brown
Hillen/Wey or Schilling/Schmidt
Caps address both the center and defensive needs. No need to resign Grabo, of course now the need for at LW.
Maybe they bring in a true vet top 4 D to pair him with?
Then Orlov can play in an easier role and maybe pair him with another external vet?
Depending on who those Vets are that can be a very solid D group.
He's a 7 year veteran earning $6 million. He should be the one playing babysitter, not the loser requiring one.
EDIT: And then maybe sign a vet Dman to play 5/6 with Orlov.
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