NHL Free Agents 2012: Rangers and More Contenders with Lots of Salary Cap Space
The New York Rangers are one of many playoff teams from last year with lots of salary cap space to use on acquiring/re-signing players for next season.
How these teams use their salary cap space will be very interesting to watch. The lack of talent on the free agent market may force general managers to put more effort into re-signing their own restricted free agents and players who will become free agents in just a few years.
Let's look at three contenders with a ton of salary cap space.
All team salary information via Capgeek.com.
New York Rangers
The Rangers currently have $15,816,666 in cap space, which is a lot for a general manager like Glen Sather.
Unfortunately for Sather, he doesn't have too many free agent options, outside of veteran winger Shane Doan, to spend this large amount of cap space on.
If the Rangers don't want to make any major additions this summer, then they could use their cap space to re-sign young defenseman Michael Del Zotto and Ryan McDonagh. Del Zotto is a restricted free agent right now, and McDonagh will be one after next season.
Will the Capitals re-sign Semin?
The Capitals have $17,255,428 in cap space right now, which is a lot for a team that has made the playoffs five straight seasons.
Unrestricted free agent winger Alexander Semin remains unsigned, and if general manager George McPhee doesn't bring him back, he will have to find his replacement in the trade market because the depth on the wings in free agency is weak right now.
The Capitals' best option for the remainder of the summer is to just re-sign restricted free agent defensemen Mike Green and John Carlson to new long-term contracts.
Detroit Red Wings
Losing out on free agents Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, in addition to the departures of some key players, has left the Red Wings with a whopping $16,832,955 in cap space.
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Since Detroit has just five blueliners signed to the NHL roster, adding another defenseman is a priority for the Red Wings. Restricted free agent defenseman Kyle Quincey will likely be signed at some point, but general manager Ken Holland will still need to add a goalscoring forward.
According to the Ottawa Sun, the Red Wings are one of several teams interested in acquiring Anaheim Ducks winger Bobby Ryan. He would be a great young addition to the Red Wings roster, and has a salary cap hit of $5.1 million.
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