With a flat cap for next season, many teams will struggle to fit all of their players under the $81.5 million limit. So for a team like the Carolina Hurricanes, who are still young but are already looking to compete, what does this mean for their ability to keep their roster together going forward?
According to CapFriendly.com, the Hurricanes have roughly $73.7 million committed to their roster for next season, which leaves about $7.8 million remaining to spend. However, this payroll is dedicated to just 17 players (10 forwards, five defensemen and two goalies), which means they’ll need to save room for other players on their 23-man roster. This is also assuming that none of the Carolina's unrestricted free agents will be back.
Among the players in need of a contract are Haydn Fleury and Warren Foegele, who are both restricted free agents and will be due for a raise. You can bet that both players will likely make somewhere between about $1.5 million and $2.5 million per season (depending on term), so we’ll say that $4.5 million is committed to them in total. We can also bet that Morgan Geekie will be on the roster next season, which contributes $763,333 million against the cap and we’ll say that Jake Bean will be there as well, which is another $863,333 million after that.
So between the four players, that’s roughly $6.1 million in cap space gone and about $1.7 million remaining, which basically covers the two remaining spare players who are making close to the league minimum.
So while the Hurricanes may not have a ton of cap space remaining, unlike a lot of teams around the league they’ll be comfortable with the lineup they have, without worrying about the need to shed players for cap space. However, the key thing here is that they can certainly shed some space by moving certain players.
In Part Two tomorrow, I’ll discuss how the Hurricanes could free up more cap space, in order to acquire an upgrade either through free agency or a trade.
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Here’s today’s poll question (results and discussion will be posted in a future article):
Do you think the Hurricanes will make any big offseason additions?