Lawton and Koules are new to the hockey business- they're going to make mistakes and some of those mistakes are going to cost money.
too early to tell (need to see how this year's signings play, last year was a bust but we've miraculously unloaded most of those bad or long-term-unfriendly contracts) with this small of a sample size and so many variables over the last 2 years.....but they've put themselves at risk of sending a little too much salary to Norfolk both last year and this year. i don't know what the norm is, but there could be a couple mil in NHL contracts sitting in Norfolk depending on trades and roster decisions. would love to have that money for guys playing in Lightning sweaters
overall though, the lightning's general inability to do deals as big as some other teams means that their misses will be smaller too...proportionately i'm not sure where we stand, but i'd bet many teams have a single dumb contract that matches our total "bad money" tally
"With the salary cap being such an important player in the way teams are managed and talent is paid, it’s hard to believe some of the ludicrously long contracts doled out in recent years.............. Vinny Lecavalier, Johan Franzen and Mike Richards are signed through 2020, Alex Ovechkin, Henrik Zetterberg, Rick DiPietro (more on the Islanders later) and Marian Hossa through 2021. Craziness.
But looking around the league, even more ludicrous than super long-term deals to top-notch players are contract buyouts. This season, 17 teams have cap space being taken up by players either on other teams or out of the league. Those 17 squads account for 27 buyouts – Boston and Carolina lead the way with three apiece. And of those 27 players, at least eight are currently under NHL contract to other teams, while most others are getting paid in Europe.
Some notable cap hits via buyout include: Colorado’s Darcy Tucker, whom Toronto has on the books at $1 million a season for the next five seasons; and the Rangers’ Vaclav Prospal, who’s good for close to $1.2 million a year for the next six seasons in Tampa Bay.
Mark Parrish scored eight goals and 13 points in 44 games for Dallas last season, but it’s Minnesota that has to deal with him on its cap – $727,778 this season, $927,778 each of the next four. Ouch. Other high-priced buyouts this season include: Dan Cloutier in L.A. at $1 million-plus this season; Marc Denis in Tampa, $1 million; Jay McKee in St. Louis, $1.3 million for two seasons; Todd Bertuzzi in Anaheim at $1.3 million; Alexei Zhitnik in Atlanta at $1.2 million; even Duvie Westcott (if you know him, you’re good) will count for $367,000 on Columbus’ cap this season, before eating $617,000 each of the next two."