by PuckStopsHere on 07/02/14 at 12:11 AM ET
Now that we have seen the busiest of the 2014 free agent frenzy and many of the 2014 All UFA Team already have new teams, I am going to look back at the 2013 team in order to get an idea of how good it was. If you built a team entirely out of the best free agents available last summer how good would they be and could they fit under the salary cap?
Here is a look at the 2013 All UFA Team and their successes in the 2013/14 season:
|Forwards||Sal Cap Hit||Bonus||GP||G||A||P||+/-|
|Daniel Alfredsson||3.5 mill||2 mill||68||18||31||49||+10|
|Danny Briere||4 mill||69||13||12||25||+1|
|David Clarkson||5.25 mill||60||5||6||11||-14|
|Matt Cooke||2.5 mill||82||10||18||28||+8|
|Valtteri Filppula||5 mill||75||25||33||58||+5|
|Nathan Horton||5.3 mill||35||4||14||18||-3|
|Jarome Iginla||1.8 mill||4.2 mill||78||30||31||61||+34|
|Vincent LeCavalier||4.5 mill||69||20||17||37||-16|
|Clarke MacArthur||3.25 mill||79||24||31||55||+12|
|Brenden Morrow||1.5 mill||71||13||12||25||+1|
|Mike Ribiero||5.5 mill||80||16||31||47||-13|
|Derek Roy||4 mill||75||9||28||37||-1|
|Teemu Selanne||2 mill||64||9||18||27||+8|
|Stephen Weiss||4.9 mill||26||2||2||4||-4|
|Andrew Ference||3.25 mill||71||3||15||18||-18|
|Tom Gilbert||2.8 mill||73||3||25||28||-5|
|Scott Hannan||1 mill||56||3||9||12||+1|
|Filip Kuba||Did Not Play|
|Douglas Murray||1.5 mill||53||0||2||2||-12|
|Rob Scuderi||3.375 mill||53||0||4||4||-8|
|Ilya Bryzgalov||2.266 mill||32||12||2.68||.909|
|Tim Thomas||2.5 mill||1.25 mill||48||18||2.88||.908|
|Totals||69.691 mill||7.45 mill||1237||207||339||546||-14|
Note that totals include only position players (except for salary).
This team has a $69.691 million salary cap hit, which exceeds the $64.3 million salary cap last season. It further exceeded the cap by $7.45 million in bonuses which would come off of the 2014/15 cap. Thus this team could not have existed in the NHL, but it comes closer to making the salary cap than many teams of the past.
This team scored 207 goals on their NHL teams. That is exactly the total the Carolina Hurricanes and Minnesota wild had in the NHL. Their 339 assists is 1.64 times their goal total, which is consistent and thus makes 207 goals scored seem realistic.
Defensively this team is bad. Tom Gilbert is their top defenceman and he is no front-liner. Two of their defencemen did not play in the NHL at all. Their goaltending is not too spectacular either. Both were below average in the NHL last year and were traded mid-season. This team would be among the worst in terms of goals against. I expect they would allow 265-270 goals in a season. This would make the team about -60 in goal differential. Florida, Buffalo and Edmonton were the only teams that were worse last season. These were the three worst teams in the NHL last season. I expect this team would finish in the low 70's in terms of points, which would leave them 27th in the NHL.
Buying a team is a failing method in today's NHL. You would have to pay more than the salary cap and in many cases have long term commitments to players. The team would be bad. Free agency is not a viable way to improve a team much. You might have picked up a useful player in Jarome Iginla or Valterri Filppula, but more likely than not your money is not well spent. Is this year's team any better? Probably not, but time will tell.
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