I looked at capfriendly today, and why do so m…

I looked at capfriendly today, and why do so many teams have so much cap space?

Because they’re showing next year’s rosters and cap now, and teams haven’t resigned their RFAs or gone through free agency yet. A lot of teams are going to commit a large amount of their cap space to their own potential free agents over the summer, and there’ll be trades and such, and free agency that will completely change the situation. That front page with all the teams on it is going to look very different six weeks from now.

How much do you think Matt Duchene will get in…

How much do you think Matt Duchene will get in free agency? I've seen some really high numbers out there and I just don't know how realistic they are.

That’s an interesting one. I think history says he’ll get a huge amount just by virtue of being the top center available in free agency this year. He’s still in his prime and will be for at least a couple more years. But with that being said, this is a guy with a career-high of 70 points. Over the last 3 seasons, he’s 60th in scoring among forwards, 33rd among centers. How much is that worth? Probably not as much as he wants. I think, in a world that makes sense, it wouldn’t be unrealistic for him to get something like the Couture deal. $8 million seems like an acceptable price to pay for what is a solid #1 center. I wouldn’t go higher than that, and I don’t think anyone will, but if there’s a bidding war…

Do u think the new coach in ottawa can actuall…

Do u think the new coach in ottawa can actually help them be a competitive team?

No, not really. Or, not right away, I’d say. Unexpected things can happen, but I don’t see how that team is anything other than terrible for the foreseeable future. I can’t even fully picture what the team is going to look like, because they’re going to have to make a bunch of moves just to reach the salary cap floor. They are $16 million under the cap floor right now, and that’s including two guys who might never actually play for them again. They’re going to have to bring in players, so who knows what they ultimately end up looking like.

Why would the Sharks be fighting in practice? …

Why would the Sharks be fighting in practice? Isn’t that a really bad sign??

It is what it is. Practice gets heated sometimes. And considering who was doing the fighting, I wouldn’t be overly concerned. It’s not like Couture took a swing at Burns or anything. Looks like more of a case of two guys who haven’t been playing just letting their frustrations get the better of them.

What do you think CBJ is going to do now that …

What do you think CBJ is going to do now that they have no draft picks and a ton of free agents? Do you think Bobrovsky is really going to Florida?

I think they’ll hit free agency really hard, make big pitches to all the top free agents. All things considered, they don’t actually have a ton of roster spots to fill, and they’ve got a shitload of cap space, even if they are able to re-sign a guy like Duchene. Werenski’s up for a new contract, and it’s going to be a considerable one, but it’s still only going to eat up a fraction of their space. They aren’t going to find players who can straight-up replace what Panarin and Bobrovsky brought, but they should be able to find some pieces to at least try and off-set the loss.

As for Florida, I think it’s likely. Just because they have the space and the need. The guy is going to get paid, and there just aren’t a lot of teams who can give $9 million to a goalie. And the number gets even smaller when you take into account a decent number of the teams who actually could do it don’t need to. I’m not ready to say he for sure ends up there though, because they still have to clear up where they stand with their current goalies, and what happens there is going to impact whether or not they can commit serious money to Bobrovsky. If they can’t get rid of Luongo/Reimer, it’s going to be hard justifying bringing in Bob and having upwards of $15 million committed to the position. But I think they’re definitely the favourite.

Can the Leafs clear up enough capspace to sign…

Can the Leafs clear up enough capspace to sign everybody if they buyout somebody out? Maybe Marleau?

No. There’s nobody they can buy out who would give them enough cap space to make it work it. Especially not Marleau. Because of his age, buying him out would only give them actual salary relief, not cap relief. He’d still count fully against the cap. If you assume their goal is to resign Marner, Kapanen, and Johnsson, their best bet is a trade. In that case, Marleau would be the ideal option, but Zaitsev and Kadri are also possibilities. Another thing I feel is important to point out is their cap situation isn’t quite as bad as people are going to make it out to be. It’s not great, but if they can move out one of those three contracts, it’s not so bad. Because currently, Nathan Horton still counts against their cap and has for the last few years, but he can and will be placed on LTIR next season. As it stands right now, they’re sitting at around $74 million in team salary next season, and that’s the number you’ll hear analysts throw around, but the real number is actually closer to $69 million. They’re still going to have to be creative, but they’re not nearly in the cap hell some people seem to think they are.