Phoenix Coyotes: What the Team Needs to Do with Their Available Cap Space

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Phoenix Coyotes: What the Team Needs to Do with Their Available Cap Space
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
GM Don Maloney and Head Coach Dave Tippett would love to make some moves before the season begins. Will they have the money to do so?

With all the drama following the sale of the Phoenix Coyotes this summer, many of you have asked how the team will look next season.

According to the powers that be, including GM Don Maloney, the team that you see on paper today is the team that will hit the ice on Opening Night. Maloney has indicated that it is the club's intention to sign Captain Shane Doan to a long term deal as soon as the sale of the team is completed to former San Jose Sharks CEO Greg Jamison.

If the team that they currently have hits the ice on Opening Night minus the "Doaner", the Coyotes will have the task of replacing their top-two scoring forwards with what currently are on the roster.

What many fans don't know, is the Coyotes have the most available cap space of any team in the NHL as we approach the start of the season. According to CapGeek.com, the Coyotes current payroll sits just south of $45 million ($44.836 million). That leaves them just over $25 million under the salary cap with room to maneuver even if they re-sign Doan to a multi-year deal.

To get to the lower limit of the salary cap, the Coyotes will have to spend more than $9 million or more or face potential forfeiture of draft picks or fines. That money does not necessarily have to be spent on new players but can be offered in performance bonuses. Teams can also look for expiring contracts with high salaries to help offset this dilemma. 

How should the Coyotes spend their money? Will they be able to spend that money? Do they even have that money to spend if the sale occurs soon? What will Jamison allow the team to spend if the deal concludes soon?

This article will explore how the Coyotes should spend the rest of the money that they have under the cap in a perfect world. I will not look to spend all of it as the Coyotes will not reach the cap maximum during the season. I will look at a couple of moves they may be able to make with the money that may be available to them once the sale concludes.

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