Weekend Chat: Free Agents’ dams are ready to burst

Yesterday, on Friday, which leads into a long weekend here in Canada, we got some little news about free agent signings. First, one of the biggest free agents signed to a one-year contract shortly after his agent was fired.

The Philadelphia Flyers also signed one of their RFAs to a new contract.

But that aside, there has been a notable lack of exercise among many free agents — both UFAs and RFAs.

There are still some big fish on the UFA front who have yet to sign. Nazem Kadri is the big one, but there are also some mid-range guys like Paul Stastny, Evan Rodrigues and Sonny Milano waiting for new deals.

There are some very big names on the RFA side who have yet to sign renewals with their teams. Jason Robertson, Jesper Bratt, Andrew Mangiapane, Noah Dobson, Kailer Yamamoto, Martin Necas, Oliver Kylington, Sean Durzi and of course Rasmus Sandin are among the more notable names yet to be signed.

If you’re wondering why so many players are still unsigned, all you have to do is look at the salary cap many teams are currently in. Toronto, for example, obviously has to cut some salary to sign Sandin even on a short, year-long show-me deal. 10 teams are currently above the regular season cap and need to take some steps to get below it. Others who are technically inferior but have yet to move to make room to sign their RFAs or land the UFA they may want to sign.

Katya’s theory about Kadri was that he would always end up in Colorado, but they are waiting to find someone to take over Erik Johnson’s contract to vacate the Cap spot.

The problem with all of this is when so many teams are competing against the cap, there is a limit to which teams can actually take on that cap. In fact, it seems like there are more teams looking for a cap spot than teams interested and able to take on those contracts. I suspect these teams are charging a lot more than the cap dumping teams are willing to pay.

Between the Big Fish free agents waiting to get the deals they want and the teams being able to close deals so the teams make room to sign them on those deals, this Three Stooges effect takes place instead of.

Klingberg abandoning his quest for a long-term deal and signing for a year could be a sign that in this multi-way chicken game, some parties are willing to blink and take the best they can get, just for the sake of it make sure you get it some. A long weekend here would be a great time for the dam break and more signings imo.


2022 TLN Prospect Rankings: #16 Curtis Douglas | via TLN

The Leafs might not be making moves these days, but the Marlies are!

IIHF asks for ‘additional information’ about Hockey Canada cases | by The Athletic

142 Players Invited to BFL National Women’s Program Selection Camp | by Hockey Canada

Finally listening to a little podcast for the long weekend.

Have a great long weekend everyone!

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