NHL Free Agent Tracker 2018

December 05 2017 05:25PM

Anaheim Ducks

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Andrew Cogliano (F), Antoine Vermette (F), Jared Boll (F), Dennis Rasmussen (F), Derek Grant (F), Chris Wagner (F), Mike Liambas (F), Corey Tropp (F), Kevin Bieksa (D), Francois Beauchemin (D), Reto Berra (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Nick Ritchie (F), Ondrej Kase (F), Kalle Kossila (F), Kevin Roy (F), Logan Shaw (F), Nicholas Kerdiles (F), Scott Sabourin (F), Brandon Montour (D), Andy Welinski (D), Kevin Boyle (G).

Overview: The Ducks have most of their core locked up for the foreseeable future. This summer they need to figure out a contract for versatile forward Andrew Cogliano and potentially a longer term deal for young offensive defenceman Brandon Montour. They have some money coming off the books in veterans Kevin Bieksa, Antoine Vermette, and Francois Beauchemin, but nothing major. 

Arizona Coyotes

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Brad Richardson (F), Zac Rinaldo (F), Mario Kempe (F), Mike Sislo (F), Michael Latta (F), Tye McGinn (F), Luke Schenn (D), Kevin Connauton (D), Joel Hanley (D), Antti Raanta (G), Michael Leighton (G). 

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Tobias Rieder (F), Max Domi (F), Anthony Duclair (F), Emerson Etem (F), Michael Bunting (F), Tyler Gaudet (F), Adam Clendening (D), Dakota Mermis (D), Marek Langhamer (G), Scott Wedgewood (G). 

Overview: The Coyotes are a young, rebuilding team. They don’t have any major unrestricted free agents this summer save possibly for Antti Raanta, though he hasn’t shown he should be a part of the team’s long-term plans yet. The bigger issue for them is determining which restricted free agents are worthy of long-term deals. Max Domi is an obvious one, but Anthony Duclair and Tobias Rieder have been more enigmatic.

Boston Bruins 

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Riley Nash (F), Tim Schaller (F), Kenny Agastino (F), Jordan Szwarz (F), Zdeno Chara (D), Paul Postma (D), Tommy Cross (D), Anton Khudobin (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Ryan Spooner (F), Frank Vatrano (F), Sean Kurlay (F), Austin Czarnik (F),  Justin Hickman (F), Anton Blidh (F), Colby Cave (F), Marr Grzelyck (D), Rob O’Gara (D). 

Overview: The Bruins have most of their roster locked up to multi-year deals. Save for Zdeno Chara, they have only minor free agents and middling restricted free agents to worry about this summer. Chara is the storyline heading into this off-season in Boston, as the team’s captain is set to turn 41 years old in March and still wants to play. 

Buffalo Sabres

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Evander Kane (F), Benoit Pouliot (F), Jordan Nolan (F), Jacob Josefson (F), Josh Gorges (D), Justin Falk (D), Zach Redmond (D), Chad Johnson (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Sam Reinhart (F), C.J. Smith (F), Hudson Fasching (F), Sean Malone (F), Nicholas Baptiste (F), Justin Bailey (F), Seth Griffith (F), Victor Antipin (D), Casey Nelson (D), Robin Lehner (G), Jason Kasdorf (G).

Overview: The Sabres got franchise centre Jack Eichel signed to an eight-year extension in October, so their next move is deciding whether they’ll do the same with Sam Reinhart and Robin Lehner. Otherwise, the Sabres have a handful of interesting impending unrestricted free agents led by Evander Kane. That said, it’s likely Kane and other names like Benoit Pouliot and Chad Johnson will be moved as rentals at the trade deadline.

Calgary Flames

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Mikael Backlund (F), Matt Stajan (F), Kris Versteeg (F), Jaromir Jagr (F), Luke Gazdic (F), Tanner Glass (F), Matt Bartkowski (D), Eddie Lack (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Mark Jankowski (F), Freddie Hamilton (F), Hunter Shinkaruk (F), Morgan Klimchuk (F), Emile Poirier (F), Hunter Smith (F), Daneil Pribyl (F), Austin Carroll (F), Garnett Hathaway (F), Marek Hrivik (F), Brett Kulak (D), Tyler Wotherspoon (D), David Rittich (G), Jon Gillies (G).

Overview: The Flames’ biggest task this summer will be a new contract for free agent centre Mikael Frolik, who’s evolved into one of the better two-way centres in the NHL. They have money to Matt Stajan and other veterans coming off the books so it shouldn’t be difficult to navigate.

Carolina Hurricanes

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Lee Stempniak (F), Derek Ryan (F), Josh Jooris (F), Andrew Miller (F), Dennis Robertson (D), Jake Chelios (D), Cam Ward (G), Jeremy Smith (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Elias Lindholm (F), Joakim Nordstrom (F), Phillip Di Giuseppe (F), Andrew Poturalski (F), Nicolas Roy (F), Valentin Zykov (F), Lucas Wallmark (F), Patrick Brown (F), Sergey Tolchinsky (F), Noah Hanifin (D), Klas Dahlbeck (D), Trevor van Riemsdyk (D), Brenden Kichton (D), Trevor Carrick (D), Josh Wesley (D), Tyler Ganly (D), Keegan Kanzig (D).

Overview: The Hurricanes don’t have any major unrestricted free agents to worry about. Instead, their summer is going to be about locking up key young restricted free agents to either bridge or long-term deals. Both Elias Lindholm and Noah Hanifin figure to be part of Carolina’s long-term plans and could receive big contracts this summer.

Chicago Blackhawks

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Lance Bouma (F), Patrick Sharp (F), Tommy Wingles (F), Jordin Tootoo (F), Andreas Martinsen (F), Cody Franson (D), Jan Rutta (D), Michal Kempny (D), Michal Roszival (D), Viktor Svedberg (D), Jeff Glass (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: John Hayden (F), Ryan Hartman (F), Tomas Jurco (F), Laurent Dauphin (F), Vinne Hinostroza (F), Erik Gustaffson (D), Ville Pokka (D).

Overview: The Blackhawks are what they are at this point with the majority of their roster inked to contracts that extend beyond the end of this season. They have a few minor unrestricted and restricted free agents but not much wiggle room due to their expensive contracts. 

Colorado Avalanche 

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Blake Comeau (F), Gabriel Bourque (F), Joe Colborne (F), Trent Vogelhuber (F), Mark Barberio (D), Andrew Hammond (G), Jonathan Bernier (G), Joe Cannata (G). 

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Matt Nieto (F), Nail Yakupov (F), Rocco Grimaldi (F), Felix Girardi (F), Reid Petryk (F), Patrik Nemeth (D), Chris Bigras (D), Duncan Siemens (D), Mason Geertsen (D), Jesse Graham (D), Spencer Martin (G). 

Overview: The Avalanche are in the midst of a rebuild and don’t have any major free agents to worry about this summer. Some restricted free agents like Nail Yakupov could be re-upped, but names like Blake Comeau and Joe Colborne will be money off the books. 

Columbus Blue Jackets

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Matt Calvert (F), Jack Johnson (D), Andre Benoit (D), Cameron Gaunce (D), John Ramage (D).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Boone Jenner (F), Oliver Bjorkstrand (F), Ryan Murray (F), Alex Broadhurst (F), Markus Nutivaara (D), Dean Kukan (D).

Overview: The Blue Jackets have most of their roster signed beyond next season, save for a few interesting restricted free agents. Boone Jenner, Ryan Murray, and Oliver Bjorkstrand all need new contracts. Jack Johnson is the only key player on the team that’ll be hitting the open market and likely won’t be signed as the team’s younger players are a higher priority.

Dallas Stars

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Antoine Roussel (F), Curtis McKenzie (F), Brian Flynn (F), Dan Hamhuis (D), Greg Pateryn (D), Andrew Bodnarchuk (D), Brent Renger (D), Kari Lehtonen (G), Mike McKenna (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Devin Shore (F), Elie Remi (F), Mattias Janmark (F), Cole Ully (F), Gemel Smith (F), Jason Dickinson (F), Mark McNeill (F), Esa Lindell (D), Stephen Johns (D), Dillon Heatherington (D), Philippe Desrosiers (G).

Overview: The Stars had an aggressive off-season last year, adding Alex Radulov, Ben Bishop, and Martin Hanzal in free agency. They have a handful of restricted free agents to deal with, like Mattias Janmark and Jamie Oleksiak, but the Stars also have Kari Lehtonen’s salary coming off the books.

Detroit Red Wings

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: David Booth (F), Eric Tangradi (F), Matt Lorito (F), Ben Street (F), Mike Green (D), Tom McCollum (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Andreas Athanasiou (F), Dylan Larkin (F), Anthony Mantha (F), Martin Frk (F), Scott Wilson (F), Matt Puempel (F), Tyler Bertuzzi (F), Turner Elson (F), Zach Nastasiuk (F), Daniel Renouf (D), Petr Mrazek (G).

Overview: The Red Wings are in a difficult place with the salary cap with expensive veterans and good young players soon needing new contracts. This summer, Dylan Larkin and Anthony Mantha, among others, are restricted free agents and the only large chunk of salary coming off the books is Mike Green, who’s a good player in his own right.

Edmonton Oilers

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Mark Letestu (F), Patrick Maroon (F), Mike Cammalleri (F), Yohann Auvitu (D), Mark Fayne (D), Edward Pasquale (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Ryan Strome (F), Antony Slepyshev (F), Drake Caggiula (F), Iiro Pakarinen (F), Patrick Russell (F), Kyle Platzier (F), Greg Chase (F), Brian Ferlin (F), Joey LaLeggia (F),

Ty Rattie (F), Braden Christoffer (F), Grayson Downing (F), Matt Benning (D), Darnell Nurse (D), Ben Betker (D), Dillon Simpson (D), Keegan Lowe (D), Nick Ellis (G), Laurent Brossoit (G).

Overview: The Oilers got Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl signed to long-term deals last summer, but this year they’ll have to deal with restricted free agents Ryan Strome, Matt Benning, and Darnell Nurse. Also, Patrick Maroon, who’s become McDavid’s wingman, will be set to hit the open market.

Florida Panthers

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Radim Vrbata (F), Colton Sceviour (F), Harri Sateri (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Jared McCann (F), Dryden Hunt (F), Alex Grenier (F), Curtis Valk (F), Anthony Greco (F), Chase Balisy (F), Alex Petrovic (D), MacKenzie Weegar (D), Linus Hulstrom (D), Edward Wittchow (D), Joshua Brown (D), Ludwig Bystrom (D).

Overview: The Panthers inexplicably only have three players set to hit the open market this summer, but they have a handful of restricted free agents in need of new contracts. The only real notable ones, though, are Jared McCann and Alex Petrovic. 

Los Angeles Kings

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Torrey Mitchell (F), Jussi Jokinen (F), Nic Dowd (F), Christian Folin (D), Darcy Kuemper (G), Jeff Zatkoff (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Nick Shore (F), Justin Auger (F), Andrew Crescenzi (F), Michael Mersch (F), Oscar Fantenberg (D), Kurtis MacDermid (D), Paul LaDue (D), Alex Lintuiemi (D), Kevin Gravel (D), Zach Leslie (D). 

Overview: The Kings are locked into a lot of big, long-term deals but will have a pretty easy summer with only depth players hitting the open market and middling young restricted free agents in need of new deals. A bigger priority this summer will be negotiating an extension for Drew Doughty, who becomes a free agent in July 2019.

Minnesota Wild

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Chris Stewart (F), Matt Cullen (F), Daniel Winnik (F), Patrick Cannone (F), Kyle Quincey (D), Zach Palmquist (D), Alex Grant (D), Niklas Svedberg (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Jason Zucker (F), Zach Mitchell (F), Mario Lucia (F), Sam Anas (F), Christoph Bertschy (F), Kurtis Gabriel (F), Adam Gilmour (F), Kyle Rau (F), Matt Dumba (D), Ryan Murphy (D), Dylan Labbe (D), Nick Seeler (D), Adam Vay (G). 

Overview: The Wild are stuck in a difficult salary cap position and will be up for another challenging summer with restricted free agents Matt Dumba and Jason Zucker in need of new deals. They also don’t have much money coming off of the books this summer.

Montreal Canadiens

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Tomas Plekanec (F), Ales Hemsky (F), Nicolas Deslauriers (F), Adam Cracknell (F), Chris Terry (F), Jordie Benn (D), Antti Niemi (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Phillip Danault (F), Daniel Carr (F), Jacob De La Rose (F), Michael McCarron (F), Markus Eisenschmid (F), Jeremy Gregoire (F), Kyle Baun (F), Brandon Davidson (D), Joe Morrow (D), Tom Parisi (D), Zach Fuacle (G).

Overview: The Canadiens are locked into their core of players for the foreseeable future as Carey Price, Karl Alzner, and Jonathan Drouin joined Shea Weber, Jeff Petry, and Andrew Shaw as Canadiens locked up for the next three seasons or more. Some money will come off the books for the Habs this summer as Tomas Plekanec hits free agency, but there isn’t much wiggle room to work with. 

Nashville Predators

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Scott Hartnell (F), Cody McLeod (F), Harry Zolnierczyk (F), Pierre-Cedric Labelle (F), Cody Bass (F), Trevor Smith (F), Alexei Emelin (D), Yannick Weber (D), Matt Irwin (D), Anthony Bitetto (D), Anders Lindback (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Miikka Salomaki (F), Andrew O’Brien (D), Trevor Murphy (D), Petter Granberg (D), Juuse Saros (G), Matt O’Connor (G).

Overview: The Predators have their core locked up for the foreseeable future, as Ryan Ellis is the only key player on their roster in need of a new contract over the next two summers. They have a well-managed cap and have a decent amount of flexibility to handle depth additions this off-season.

New Jersey Devils 

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Ryan Clowe (F), Drew Stafford (F), Jimmy Hayes (F), Brian Gibbons (F), Bracken Kearns (F), John Moore (D), Dalton Prout (D), Brian Strait (D).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Miles Wood (F), Stefan Noesen (F), Blake Coleman (F), Nick Lappin (F), Ryan Kujawinski (F), Kevin Rooney (F), Ben Thomson (F), Steven Santini (D), Michael Kapla (D), Viktor Loov (D), Ken Appleby (G).

Overview: The Devils are enjoying a breakout season and have all of their important players locked up beyond this season. They have a lot of young players on value contracts and have the capacity to take a major run at a free agent next summer.

New York Islanders

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: John Tavares (F), Nikolai Kulemin (F), Josh Bailey (F), Jason Chimera (F), Connor Jones (F), Stephen Gionta (F), Calvin De Haan (D), Thomas Hickey (D), Dennis Seidenberg (D), Kane Lafranchise (D), Seth Helgeson (D), Jaroslav Halak (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Brock Nelson (F), Kyle Schempp (F), Ross Johnston (F), Ryan Pulock (D), Scott Mayfield (D), Devon Toews (D), Kyle Burroughs (D), Christopher Gibson (G).

Overview: The Islanders have a very difficult summer ahead of them, as franchise forward John Tavares is set to hit the open market for the first time in his career. Also, they need to sign restricted free agents Brock Nelson and Ryan Pulock to new deals while solid players like Josh Bailey and Calvin De Haan will become unrestricted free agents.

New York Rangers

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Rick Nash (F), Michael Grabner (F), David Desharnais (F), Paul Carey (F), Nick Holden (D), Ondrej Pavelec (G). 

2018 Restricted Free Agents: J.T. Miller (F), Kevin Hayes (F), Jimmy Vesey (F), Boo Nieves (F), Adam Tambellini (F), Adam Chapie (F),  Steven Fogarty (F), Daniel Catenacci (F), Brady Skjei (D), John Gilmour (D), Ryan Graves (D), Ryan Sproul (D).

Overview: The Rangers have a handful of good players hitting the open market this summer, led by Rick Nash who’s hitting unrestricted free agency for the first time in his career. They’ll have a lot of flexibility to alter their roster and continue the process of getting younger.

Ottawa Seantors

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Mike Blunden (F), Tyler Randell (F), Johnny Oduya (D), Chris Wideman (D), Danny Taylor (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Mark Stone (F), Nicholas Paul (F), Max Reinhart (F), Vincent Dunn (F), Cody Ceci (D), Ben Harper (D), Frederik Claesson (D), Patrick Sieloff (D), Chris Driedger (G). 

Overview: The most important task for the Senators this off-season will be a long-term deal for forward Mark Stone. Otherwise, it’ll be a quiet summer as the team doesn’t have many contracts coming off the books. That said, on July 1, 2018, the Sens can begin negotiating with captain Erik Karlsson on a contract extension, which is something that’ll loom over the team until pen hits the paper.

Philadelphia Flyers

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Valtteri Filppula (F), Matt Read (F), Colin McDonald (F), Brandon Manning (D), T.J. Brennan (D), Will O’Neill (D), Dustin Tokarski (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Taylor Leier (F), Michael Vecchione (F), Danick Martel (F), Tyrell Goulbourne (F), Robert Hagg (D), Samuel Morin (D), Reece Wilcox (D), Mark Alt (D), Anthony Stolarz (G).

Overview: The Flyers are a strange blend of young, up-and-coming talent infused with an expensive, aging roster. They don’t have any key players hitting the open market this summer, but have to be careful with their free agency plan as Ivan Provorov, Travis Konecny, and other good young players will need long-term deals in 2019. 

Pittsburgh Penguins

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Patric Hornqvist (F), Ryan Reaves (F), Carter Rowney (F), Tom Sestito (F), Ian Cole (D), Kevin Czuczman (D), Zach Trotman (D).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Riley Sheahan (F), Greg McKegg (F), Bryan Rust (F), Tom Kuhnhackl (F), Thomas DiPauli (F), Teddy Blueger (F), Dominik Simon (F), Jean-Sebastian Dea (F), Andrey pedan (D), Lukas Bengtsson (D), Frank Corrado (D), Jerred Tinordi (D), Tristan Jarry (G).

Overview: The Penguins have done a good job augmenting their core with cheap, young players and they’ll have to work some more magic this summer as Ian Cole and Patric Hornqvist are set to hit free agency.

San Jose Sharks

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Joe Thornton (F), Joel Ward (F), Jannik Hansen (F), Brandon Mashinter (F), Brandon Bollig (F), Aaron Dell (G). 

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Tomas Hertl (F), Danny O’Regan (F), Chris Tierney (F), Dylan DeMelo (D), Radim Simek (D), Antoine Bibeau (G).

Overview: The Sharks inked Joe Thornton to a one-year deal last summer but let Patrick Marleau walk in free agency. Thornton will be a free agent again this summer along with Joel Ward and Jannik Hansen giving San Jose some opportunity to alter their roster.

St. Louis Blues

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Paul Stastny (F), Kyle Brodziak (F), Scottie Upshall (F), Magnus Paajarvi (F), Wade Megan (F), Carter Hutton (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Dmitrij Jaskin (F), Robbie Fabbri (F), Oskar Sundqvist (F), Mackenzie MacEachern (F), Justin Selman (F), Beau Bennett (F), Joel Edmundson (D), Jordan Schmaltz (D), Thomas Vannelli (D), Petteri Lindbohm (D), Jordan Binnington (G).

Overview: The Blues have the majority of their core locked up beyond this season, but Paul Stastny is set to hit the open market for the first time since he inked a four-year deal to join St. Louis is 2014. Along with Stastny, the Blues will need to figure out new deals for restricted free agents Robby Fabbri, Joel Edmundson, and Dimitrij Jaskin.

Tampa Bay Lightning

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Chris Kunitz (F), J.T. Brown (F), Chris DiDomenico (F), Erik Condra (F), Andrej Sustr (D), Jamie McBain (D), Mat Bodie (D).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Vladislav Namestnikov (F), Cedric Paquette (F), Adam Erne (F), Carter Verhaeghe (F), Alex Grant (F), Michael Bournival (F), Matthew Peca (F), Slater Koekkoek (D), Daniel Walcott (D), Louis Domingue (G).

Overview: After back-to-back summers loaded with signing key players to long term deals, the Lightning are set to have a quiet off-season. Vladislav Namestnikov is enjoying a breakout season and will be a restricted free agent, but otherwise, the Lightning only have depth players in need of new deals.

Toronto Maple Leafs

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: James van Riemsdyk (F), Tyler Bozak (F), Leo Komarov (F), Dominic Moore (F), Eric Fehr (F), Colin Greening (F),  Joffrey Lupul (F), Ben Smith (F), Roman Polak (D).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: William Nylander (F), Nikita Soshnikov (F), Miro Aaltonen (F), Frederik Gauthier (F), Kerby Rychel (F), Andreas Johnson (F), Martin Marincin (D), Rinat Vailev (D), Justin Holl (D), Kasimir Kaskisuo (G).

Overview: The Maple Leafs have a busy summer ahead of them as James van Riemsdyk, Tyler Bozak, and Leo Komarov, a few pillars of the last half-decade, will hit the open market. They’ll have to be careful with how they spend money though, as William Nylander, Auston Matthews, and Mitch Marner’s entry-level deals expire in the next two years.

Vancouver Canucks

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Henrik Sedin (F), Daniel Sedin (F), Thomas Vanek (F), Jayson Megna (F), Erik Gudbranson (D), Alex Biega (D), Patrick Wiercioch (D), Richard Bachman (G).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Sven Baertschi (F), Markus Granlund (F), Alex Burmistrov (F), Jake Virtanen (F), Griffen Molino (F), Reid Boucher (F), Joesph Labate (F), Michael Chaput (F), Cole Cassels (F), Troy Stetcher (D), Derrick Pouliot (D), Philip Holm (D), Jordan Subban (D), Ashton Sautner (D), MacKenzie Stewart (D), Anton Cederholm (D). 

Overview: It appears to be the end of an era in Vancouver as the Sedin twins, both surefire Hall of Famers, are set to hit free agency this summer. The Canucks are aiming to get younger and have a wealth of players in need of new deals, meaning the Sedins may not be back.

Vegas Golden Knights

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: James Neal (F), Mikhail Grabovski (F), David Perron (F), Jonathan Marchessault (F), Brandon Pirri (F), Paul Thompson (F),  Jason Garrison (D).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: William Karlsson (F), William Carrier (F), Stefan Matteau (F), Tomas Nosek (F), Tomas Hyka (F), Teemu Pulkkinen (F), Tobias Lindberg (F), Jon Merrill (D), Colin Miller (D), Shea Theodore (D), Max Lagace (G), Oscar Dansk (G). 

Overview: The Golden Knights are enjoying a surprisingly good inaugural season and they’ll have quite a bit of room to build on it next summer. Being a young expansion team, they have a lot of restricted and unrestricted free agents to deal with next summer, giving them a lot of roster flexibility 

Washington Capitals

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Lars Eller (F), Jay Beagle (F), Alex Chiasson (F), Wayne Simpson (F), John Albert (F), Anthony Peluso (F), Zach Sill (F), John Carlson (D), Taylor Chorney (D), Aaron Ness (D).

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Tom Wilson (F), Devante Smith-Pelly (F), Tyler Graovac (F), Riley Barber (F), Tim McGauley (F), Liam O’Brien (F), Travis Boyd (F), Madison Bowey (D), Tyler Lewington (D), Phillip Grubauer (G).

Overview: After a tough off-season that saw the Capitals lose multiple key free agents due to a salary cap crunch, things will be less hectic in Washington this summer. Lars Eller is the only major player set to hit the open market, while depth young players like Tom Wilson and Madison Bowey need new restricted free agent deals.

Winnipeg Jets

2018 Unrestricted Free Agents: Shawn Matthias (F), Matt Hendricks (F), Tobias Enstrom (D), Michael Hutchinson (G)

2018 Restricted Free Agents: Adam Lowry (F), Joel Armia (F), Marko Dano (F), Brandon Tanev (F), Nicolas Petan (F), Chase De Leo (F), James Lodge (F), Buddy Robinson (F), JC Lipon (F), Michael Sgarbossa (F), Jacob Trouba (D), Tucker Poolman (D), Joshua Morrissey (D), Jan Kostalek (D), Cameron Schilling (D), Julian Melchiori (D), Connor Hellebuyck (G), Eric Comrie (G).

Overview: The Jets don’t have many unrestricted free agents this summer, but they have a boatload of players who need new restricted free agent contracts. They’ll have to tread carefully, though, as Patrik Laine's entry-level deal expires in 2019. 

Top 2018 Free Agents

Goaltenders:

1. Kari Lehtonen ($5.9 million 2017-18 cap hit)

2. Jaroslav Halak ($4.5 million 2017-18 cap hit)

3. Jonathan Bernier ($2.75 million 2017-18 cap hit)

4. Anton Khudobin ($1.2 million 2017-18 cap hit)

5. Cam Ward ($3.3 million 2017-18 cap hit)

6. Darcy Kuemper ($650k 2017-18 cap hit)

7. Carter Hutton ($1.125 million 2017-18 cap hit)

8. Andrew Hammond ($1.35 million 2017-18 cap hit)

9. Michael Hutchinson ($1.15 million 2017-18 cap hit)

10. Chad Johnson ($2.5 million 2017-18 cap hit) 

The free agent goaltender market for 2018 doesn’t feature many game-changing talents. Kari Lehtonen, Cam Ward, and Jaroslav Halak are the only options who have experience as a team’s main starting goalie, and all three have been splitting the net with somebody else in 2017-18. Otherwise, the list is loaded with backup, 1B type goalies. That said, names like Carter Hutton and Anton Khudobin have been good this season in backup roles and could be interesting risks to take.

Defencemen:

1. John Carlson ($3.97 million 2017-18 cap hit)

2. Mike Green ($6 million 2017-18 cap hit)

3.Calvin De Haan ($3.3 million 2017-18 cap hit)

4. Jack Johnson ($4.36 million 2017-18 cap hit)

5. Zdeno Chara ($4 million 2017-18 cap hit)

6. Toby Enstrom ($5.75 million 2017-18 cap hit)

7. Ian Cole ($2.1 million 2017-18 cap hit)

8. Erik Gudbranson ($3.5 million 2017-18 cap hit)

9. Thomas Hickey ($2.2 million 2017-18 cap hit)

10. Dan Hamhuis ($3.75 million 2017-18 cap hit) 

The biggest prize among free agent defencemen in 2018 is John Carlson of the Washington Capitals. Much like with Kevin Shattenkirk last summer, Carlson has emerged into an elite offence-producing defenceman and it’s difficult to say if the Capitals can afford to keep him around. The next biggest prize for a team in need of a shutdown defender would be Calvin De Haan of the New York Islanders, who’s set to hit the open market for the first time. Beyond that, the 2017 defender market features some interesting veteran names like Zdeno Chara, Mike Green, and Tobias Enstrom.

Forwards:

1. John Tavares ($5.5 million 2017-18 cap hit)

2. James van Riemsdyk ($4.25 million 2017-18 cap hit)

3. James Neal ($5 million 2017-18 cap hit)

4. Mikael Backlund ($3.575 million 2017-18 cap hit)

5. Evander Kane ($5.25 million 2017-18 cap hit)

6. Joe Thornton ($8 million 2017-18 cap hit)

7. Jonathan Marchessault ($750k 2017-18 cap hit)

8. Patric Hornqvist ($4.25 million 2017-18 cap hit)

9. Rick Nash ($7.8 million 2017-18 cap hit)

10. Paul Stastny ($7 million 2017-18 cap hit)

11. Henrik & Daniel Sedin ($7 million 2017-18 cap hit)

12. Lars Eller ($3.5 million 2017-18 cap hit)

13. Josh Bailey ($3.3 million 2017-18 cap hit)

14. Tyler Bozak ($4.2 million 2017-18 cap hit)

15. Andrew Cogliano ($3 million 2017-18 cap hit)

The crop of forwards is certainly the strongest position in this summer’s free agent pool. At the top of that list is John Tavares, who’s set to his free agency for the first time in his career. He says he’s interested in remaining with the New York Islanders, but no deal has been reached yet. There are other big name veterans on the list, too, like Joe Thornton, the Sedin twins, and Rick Nash, but the biggest prizes after Tavares would be wingers like James van Riemsdyk and Evander Kane or a more under-the-radar two-way centre like Mikael Backlund.

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Nation Network utility infielder. Twitter: @cooom, Email: cameron@oilersnation.com