Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 07/25/05 at 02:02 PM ET
Top Newcomers: The most likely players from junior, Europe or the AHL to make the jump to the pro roster this season. Next in Line: The next most likely young players to compete for a spot. Possible Buyouts: Players that might get bought out under the 2/3 provision of the new CBA in order to free up salary cap space. Notable restricted free agents possibly not tendered: Not an exhaustive list, but players that, due to salary cap limitations, may not get qualifying offers from their current teams, which would make them unrestricted free agents. Possible restricted free agents poached by others: Blue-chip young players that could get offered a big ticket contract which could be difficult for their current team to match. Needs: Looking primarily at the goaltending, top four defencemen and top six forwards for each team (because role players will shuffle around in order to fill the depth spots in the lineup). Projected cap position: The approximate expected salary expenditure of a team, and number of players that could reasonably be expected to be under contract (including newcomers) before the off-season acquisitions begin. This number is obviously subjective and a radical move by any team will throw the estimate out of whack.
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