NHL

Every NHL Team's Most Difficult Roster Decision This Offseason

Carol SchramFeatured ColumnistSeptember 20, 2013

Every NHL Team's Most Difficult Roster Decision This Offseason

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    2013 No. 1 overall pick Nathan MacKinnon
    2013 No. 1 overall pick Nathan MacKinnonDoug Pensinger/Getty Images

    Training camp is a time of hope. Every NHL team thinks it's made the right changes over the summer to improve its fortunes. Every young prospect dreams of impressing enough to make the jump to the top of the hockey heap.

    In reality—especially in our modern salary cap world—most rosters are essentially determined well before preseason begins. Teams know exactly how they'll allocate their money.

    Still, there are young players who come into camp with jobs to lose based on lackluster performances, and there are veterans who are striving for new or improved roles. Player personnel staffs have lots to sort through before the regular season begins on October 1.

    Most NHL teams are currently carrying rosters of about 40 players. They'll need to get down to 23, with salary commitments of $64.3 million or less, by September 30.

    Here's a look at the most difficult roster decision each team will have to make before the regular season gets underway.

     

    *All roster, contract and salary cap information is from CapGeek.com and all player stats are obtained from NHL.com.

Anaheim Ducks: Goaltending

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    Current Roster: 16 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $1.4 million

    The Anaheim Ducks surprised when they rode a strong start to a Pacific Division title in 2012-13. They have a solid crop of young forwards to complement veterans like Teemu Selanne, Saku Koivu, Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf. Their defense is reasonably solid.

    Things get interesting in net. Viktor Fasth surprised out of the gate last year and earned a contract worth $2.9 million this year—not that far off incumbent Jonas Hiller's $4.5 million. The pair split regular-season duties right down the middle, but Bruce Boudreau chose to ride Hiller in the playoffs.

    It will be interesting to see how Boudreau deploys his goaltenders this year. Will there be any room for 2013 World Junior gold medallist John Gibson to see time with the big club, or will his first pro season be strictly an AHL affair?

Boston Bruins: Cap Restrictions

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    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: over limit by $1.1 million

    The Boston Bruins have made some significant changes to the team that went to Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals last spring. Nathan Horton and Tyler Seguin are gone, and Jarome Iginla and Loui Eriksson are new additions at forward.

    The B's lineup looks solid. They're over the cap with only 22 players signed, but one of those players is Marc Savard, who is still showing no signs of returning from post-concussion syndrome.

    Once Savard's $4 million salary gets moved to the long-term injured reserve list, Peter Chiarelli will have the space he needs to fill out his roster—likely with youngsters—in time for opening night.

    Torey Krug, Matt Bartkowski and Dougie Hamilton proved themselves during last year's playoffs but are basically competing for two open spots on the blue line. 

Buffalo Sabres: Which Kids Get the Call?

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    Current Roster: 12 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $6.3 million

    The Buffalo Sabres are in the midst of a major rebuild. They've been stockpiling young players and can choose from plenty of talent to flesh out their roster.

    After stepping right into the lineup as the NHL's youngest player at the start of 2012-13, Mikhail Grigorenko had an up-and-down rookie season. Tal Pinchevsky of NHL.com reports that Grigorenko has worked hard with the Sabres' staff over the summer and could be in a position to play top-six minutes as a second-line center.

    On defense, 2010 first-rounder Mark Pysyk made a good impression in 19 NHL games at the end of last season and has been paired with reliable mentor Henrik Tallinder in training camp, according to Davis Harper of NHL.com.

    Other youngsters who will get a good look could include forwards Johan Larsson and Zemgus Girgensons, along with defensemen Brayden McNabb and Rasmus Ristolainen.

     

Calgary Flames: Upgrades

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    Current Roster: 14 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $13.2 million

    The Calgary Flames are well-positioned to pick up a bargain as the regular season draws near and other teams need to move players in order to shed salary.

    The Flames are focused on developing their young players, but with $13 million in cap space, they have room to bring in a veteran or two or trade a less expensive player for an upgrade at the same position.

    The Flames could use help at every position. Now that Miikka Kiprusoff has officially retired, would the they pull the trigger on a deal for a higher-caliber goalie than their current tandem of Karri Ramo and Joey MacDonald?

    (Memo to Jay Feaster: Call St. Louis.)

Carolina Hurricanes: Time for the Kids?

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    Current Roster: 12 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $1.0 million

    Like many teams, the Carolina Hurricanes are bumping up against the salary-cap ceiling. They'll get some relief when Joni Pitkanen and his $4.5 million salary go on long-term injured reserve, but the 'Canes are looking to slot some young players into key roles this year.

    Ron Francis has said that 2013 first-rounder Elias Lindholm has every opportunity to make the team at forward, per Adam Kimelman of NHL.com. On the blue line, Justin Faulk will start his third year at the NHL level and will likely be joined by Ryan Murphy, who saw a few games of big league action last year as an emergency injury call-up.

     

Chicago Blackhawks: The Next Wave

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    Current Roster: 12 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $2.0 million

    When you win the Stanley Cup, you don't want to tinker too much with your lineup. But as the Chicago Blackhawks learned in 2010, and to a lesser extent this year, when your team is successful your players quickly become expensive.

    Prospects like Bryan Bickell, Andrew Shaw and Brandon Saad developed nicely for the 'Hawks between their two championships. Now, they have room at forward to see if the likes of Brandon Pirri, Jeremy Morin and Jimmy Hayes can follow suit.

Colorado Avalanche: Let the Youngsters Carry the Load?

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    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $10.2 million

    It's a new dawn in Denver, with Patrick Roy guiding the ship.

    The Avs are committed to a serious youth movement led by the NHL's youngest captain, Gabriel Landeskog.

    2013 No. 1 draft pick Nathan MacKinnon is expected to join the team in a full-time role, while wily veterans like 22-year-olds Ryan O'Reilly and Matt Duchene will be looked upon to provide big minutes and serious offense.

    Can the Avalanche make the leap back to respectability under Roy's leadership?

Columbus Blue Jackets: Is Ryan Murray Ready for Prime Time?

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    Current Roster: 14 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $2.0 million

    2012 second overall pick Ryan Murray lost almost a year of development when he suffered a season-ending shoulder injury with the WHL Everett Silvertips last November.

    Murray is now fully healed and showing well so far in preseason. Will the 19-year-old be able to bounce back from his injury and make a real contribution to the Columbus Blue Jackets this season?

Dallas Stars: How Do They Blend It All Together?

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    Tyler Seguin
    Tyler SeguinRonald Martinez/Getty Images

    Current Roster: 14 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $2.0 million

    In just a few months, new Dallas Stars general manager Jim Nill has executed a major overhaul of the franchise. Lindy Ruff is in as coach, new faces like Tyler Seguin, Shawn Horcoff and Sergei Gonchar have been added on the ice and budding star Jamie Benn has just been named team captain.

    The question now for the Stars is how all these disparate pieces will fit together. Chemistry can be an elusive ingredient for a sports team. Have Jim Nill and company managed to find the right balance of veteran leadership, skill, talent and youthful enthusiasm to push the Stars back into playoff contention in their shiny new uniforms?

     

Detroit Red Wings: How to Get Under the Cap

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    Current Roster: 17 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: over limit by $2.3 million

    The Detroit Red Wings enjoy a reputation as a well-run organization, but they're facing a cap crunch going into the new season.

    With 26 players under contract, a roster reduction will be required before opening night, and salary will need to be trimmed.

    The team's collection of 17 forwards is at least three too many. If everyone stays healthy, Ken Holland will likely try to swing one or more trades for picks and prospects. Veterans like Mikael Samuelsson and Todd Bertuzzi might not fit into the team's plans as it tries to get younger, but both have no-trade clauses. Will Holland be able to persuade one or both of them to move on?

Edmonton Oilers: New Faces at Forward

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    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 9 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $1.3 million

    The Edmonton Oilers have injected a steady veteran presence into their 2013-14 lineup thanks to the summer additions of David Perron, Boyd Gordon and Andrew Ference.

    Their young core up front is solid, but $42 million man Ryan Nugent-Hopkins remains on the shelf with a shoulder injury, so a spot opens up for someone else.

    Jesse Joensuu likely has the inside track on a roster spot. Mark Arcobello had a strong outing against Vancouver on September 18. Will that earn him a longer look from Dallas Eakins?

Florida Panthers: Sign Tim Thomas?

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    Current Roster: 15 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $11.9 million

    In net, the Florida Panthers have Scott Clemmensen and Jacob Markstrom under contract. That didn't stop them from inviting veteran Tim Thomas to camp on a professional tryout.

    Thomas won the Stanley Cup and the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2011 but sat out the 2012-13 season for personal reasons. After a year away, the 39-year-old says he's ready to give the NHL another shot.

    Can Thomas bring his winning ways to a Panthers squad that struggled lat year? Will his outspoken personal beliefs be a distraction to the team? And how would signing Thomas affect the development of highly touted prospect Markstrom? These are the issues that Dale Tallon will need to mull over before he decides whether or not to offer Thomas a contract for the season.

Los Angeles Kings: Logjam on the Blue Line

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    Willie Mitchell
    Willie MitchellKirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 9 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: over limit by $86,000

    Willie Mitchell hasn't played hockey since he hoisted the Stanley Cup over his head in June 2012—until this week. According to Lisa Dillman of the Los Angeles Times, Mitchell plans to suit up for the Kings in their exhibition game against the Colorado Avalanche on September 20:

    Lets try that again - Willie Mitchell expects to be playing tomorrow in Denver

    — lisa dillman (@reallisa) September 19, 2013

    After Mitchell missed all of 2012-13 with knee problems, the Kings acquired Robyn Regehr as a playoff reinforcement, then re-signed him at $3 million a year. Los Angeles has also brought along a solid crew of young blueliners like Alec Martinez, Jake Muzzin and Keaton Ellerby, who have been a big part of the team's success.

    If Mitchell really is healthy enough to play, Los Angeles will be blessed with nine defensemen with NHL experience—and a salary cap problem. At least one rearguard will almost certainly need to be moved before the beginning of the season.

Minnesota Wild: How Can Cooke Be Made a Fan Favorite?

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    Matt Cooke
    Matt CookeBrace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sport

    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $2.8 million

    Minnesota Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher startled the hockey world last July 5 when he announced the signing of free agent Matt Cooke. The Wild signed the star to a lucrative three-year deal and essentially moved Devin Setoguchi to Winnipeg in order to make room for Cooke's contract.

    During his time with Pittsburgh, Cooke's reputation for injuring opposing players grew dramatically after he put stars like Marc Savard and Erik Karlsson out of action. Wild fans' memories go back further to Cooke's years with Vancouver, where he was a constant thorn in the team's side.

    We've heard Cooke insist before that he's a changed man, yet the questionable incidents keep occurring. Will Mike Yeo be able to harness Cooke's trademark feistiness to make Minnesota better without bringing down the wrath of the NHL and fans league-wide?

Montreal Canadiens: Does Murray Bump Tinordi?

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    Douglas Murray (6)
    Douglas Murray (6)Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 9 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: over by $1.8 million

    Douglas Murray's late-summer signing by the Montreal Canadiens came as a surprise to many, especially because Habs fans thought they already had a massive defensive defenseman slotted into the lineup: rookie Jarred Tinordi.

    Tinordi played eight regular-season and five playoff games with Montreal last year and acquitted himself reasonably well, leading most to assume the 21-year-old would get a serious look this year.

    Murray's signing, however, gives Montreal nine defensemen on the roster. Tinordi's the only one on a two-way contract and can still clear waivers with his limited NHL experience.

    The hulking youngster is going to have to put in one heckuva training camp if he hopes to start the season with the big club.

     

Nashville Predators: Is the Big Club the Right Place for Seth Jones?

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    Seth Jones
    Seth JonesEd Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 14 forwards, 7 defense, 1 goaltender

    Cap Space Available: $4.6 million

    For a good part of last year, Seth Jones was ranked as the No. 1 prospect in the 2013 NHL draft. But when draft day came, he fell to No. 4 before being selected by the Nashville Predators.

    The team thinks it got a steal. Jones will start his NHL career with a chip on his shoulder.

    Early in his development, Jones is impressing. He had a strong prospects tournament, and the Preds may pair him with Shea Weber—for now, at least. That means he could log big minutes and lots of different game situations.

    Nashville is still smarting from the unexpected departure of Ryan Suter last year. It'll take Jones some time to reach that level, but he could be the rare blue-chip defenseman who can step into an NHL lineup before his 19th birthday.

New Jersey Devils: Goaltending

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    Current Roster: 15 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $3.8 million

    The New Jersey Devils' incumbent netminder, Martin Brodeur, has always liked to carry the load for his team. He's also now 41 years old.

    Cory Schneider was acquired this summer with the intent that he'll take over from Brodeur upon his retirement. In the meantime, coach Peter DeBoer is left with the task of splitting up this year's duties.

    After his time in Vancouver, Schneider is no stranger to a crowded crease.

    Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger reports that Brodeur will start for the Devils on opening night. After that, it's anybody's guess.

New York Islanders: Keep a Good Thing Going

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    Cal Clutterbuck and the Islanders
    Cal Clutterbuck and the IslandersBruce Bennett/Getty Images

    Current Roster: 14 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $15.6 million

    What is happening? The New York Islanders have somehow transformed from a team in constant turmoil into the picture of organizational stability.

    After their impressive playoff appearance last spring, management quietly re-signed a bunch of key players to long-term deals at reasonable money. Prior franchise holdouts Lubomir Visnovsky and Evgeni Nabokov are now all-in, and Matt Moulson is the only core Islander who's currently headed towards unrestricted free agency.

    The Islanders have a few new puzzle pieces to work into the mix as well, like Cal Clutterbuck and Pierre-Marc Bouchard, though Clutterbuck was injured in preseason action and is expected to miss a month. They'll miss old captain Mark Streit, but roster decisions for Long Island look like they'll be more about tinkering than wholesale changes.

New York Rangers: Will Stepan Re-Sign?

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    Michael Ivins-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 14 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $2.1 million

    The biggest change with this year's New York Rangers team is its new bench boss, the affable Alain Vigneault.

    On the ice, the team faces injury questions, as Carl Hagelin and Ryan Callaghan continue to rehab offseason shoulder surgeries. And one player is missing entirely: center Derek Stepan.

    The 23-year-old is coming off his entry-level contract and looking to be paid based on his performance to date, according to Larry Brooks of the New York Post. Brooks reports that Stepan is not married to the idea of a long-term deal, but his salary expectations are above the $2.1 million in cap room that the Rangers currently have available.

    As a restricted free agent, Stepan doesn't have a lot of leverage unless he can find a team that's willing to sign him to a juicy offer sheet. The question is whether or not a deal eventually gets done by the time the Rangers start the season—or even once they get back to New York at the end of October after their epic road trip.

Ottawa Senators: How Hard Can Erik Karlsson Be Pushed?

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    Jason Spezza and Erik Karlsson
    Jason Spezza and Erik KarlssonBruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 14 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $8.2 million

    Erik Karlsson rushed back from his serious Achilles injury last year in time to play in the postseason. However, by the Pittsburgh series, it was clear that he was not the same Norris Trophy winner who had his 2012-13 season cut short by Matt Cooke's skateblade back in February.

    Heading into training camp, Karlsson seemed cautiously optimistic about his recovery, per Wayne Scanlan of the Ottowa Citizen. How should an Ottowa Senators fan interpret a sentence like “It’s not what it used to be, but, at the same time, it’s better than I thought it would be”? 

    It seems Karlsson himself is uncertain just what to expect once the regular season begins. In a season of change for the Senators, having their anchor back in top form could be the pivot on which their success or failure will balance.

Philadelphia Flyers: Who's No. 1?

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    Steve Mason
    Steve MasonEric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 10 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: over limit by $2.0 million

    True to form, the Philadelphia Flyers remain the most impulsive team in the NHL when it comes to big signings. In the summer of 2013, they purged Danny Briere and Ilya Bryzgalov from their roster to help become cap compliant but turned around and signed Vincent Lecavalier and Mark Streit to juicy deals.

    The team will get its cap relief when it moves Chris Pronger's $4.9 million back onto long-term injured reserve once the season starts. Then, the Flyers' biggest question will be netminding.

    Both Steve Mason and Ray Emery are on bargain-basement contracts compared to what the Flyers were paying Bryz, but both have been notoriously inconsistent. Emery has come off a couple of good years as a backup in Chicago but has lots of strangeness on his resume before that. Meanwhile, Mason's play fell off dramatically after a Calder Trophy-winning rookie season.

    Mason's seven games with the Flyers after the trade deadline last year were a success, but the Flyers are one of those teams where the drama in the net never seems to stop.

Phoenix Coyotes: Does Rusty Klesla's Roster Spot Need Filling?

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    Rusty Klesla
    Rusty KleslaMatt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 12 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $3.5 million

    Like the New York Islanders, things are freakishly settled in the desert this fall. The Phoenix Coyotes are out from under the NHL's ownership, and they're lurking surprisingly close to the salary-cap ceiling.

    So far in preseason, the most worrisome occurrence is likely Rusty Klesla's injury on September 16, when he was stretchered off the ice with a concussion and whiplash after a hit from the Kings' Jodan Nolan.

    Klesla is a reliable top-four defenseman for the Coyotes. He will be missed if his concussion symptoms linger for any period of time.

Pittsburgh Penguins: How to Deploy the Last Line of Defense?

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    Tomas Vokoun
    Tomas VokounRob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: over limit by $1.1 million

    Not much is new among the Pittsburgh Penguins' skaters. The high salaries they pay their top players virtually guarantee that there won't be much movement, though youngsters like Beau Bennett and Simon Despres could continue to grow their ice time.

    The spotlight in Pittsburgh will likely remain in net, where veteran Tomas Vokoun supplanted incumbent Marc-Andre Fleury during the 2013 playoffs.

    The Penguins enter the season status quo: Fleury is the official No. 1. You can bet if the going gets tough at any point, Dan Bylsma will once again turn to Vokoun to bail him out.

San Jose Sharks: Hertl Time?

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    Tomas Hertl
    Tomas HertlJamie Sabau/Getty Images

    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: over limit by $400,000

    The San Jose Sharks have had good luck developing forwards over the past few years, as Joe Pavelski and Logan Couture are evolving into a talented pair who may ultimately surpass Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau.

    Doug Wilson is hoping that Tomas Hertl's name will be the next to be added to that list.

    The 19-year-old has spent the last two seasons playing among men in the Czech elite league. It's virtually guaranteed that he'll make the team on opening night. Todd McLellan has tried out the big first-rounder with Thornton and Brent Burns during training camp—no pressure. Hertl stood out with a solid performance in his first exhibition outing against Vancouver.

St. Louis Blues: Break the Goalie Bond?

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    Isaac Brekken/Getty Images

    Current Roster: 15 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $1.1 million

    The St. Louis Blues are on the verge of going from an embarrassment of riches in net to having almost nothing at all.

    After awkwardly sharing duties for the past two seasons, both Brian Elliott and Jaroslav Halak are poised to become unrestricted free agents at the end of this season. Youngster Jake Allen provided St. Louis with quality minutes last year while Halak was injured, so he's also in the mix.

    Rather than letting this issue turn into a big distraction for the team, St. Louis needs to name a proper No. 1 and reward him with a contract extension before the season gets too old.

Tampa Bay Lightning: Goalie Battle

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    Ben Bishop
    Ben BishopGreg Fiume/Getty Images

    Current Roster: 12 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $2.6 million

    The Tampa Bay Lightning have been scoring goals for years, but sometimes they don't stop them so well.

    This season, Steve Yzerman hopes things will be different when he puts Ben Bishop and Anders Lindback head-to-head in a battle for the No. 1 spot.

    According to Mike G. Morreale of NHL.com, Yzerman is advocating for the two netminders to split the duties over the 82-game schedule. Time will tell if one emerges as heir to the throne.

Toronto Maple Leafs: Will Cody Franson Sign?

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    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $1.9 million

    Now that Nazem Kadri has been inked to a new deal, Cody Franson remains the Toronto Maple Leafs' only holdout.

    Only problem is, those negotiations still look like they're going nowhere.

    Franson is working out on his own and told Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star that he's looking to a sign a one-year deal, hoping there will be more money available when he signs a long-term contract next year when the salary cap rises.

    As a restricted free agent, Franson doesn't have a lot of leverage, but with only $1.9 million in cap space and some jobs still to fill, Toronto is going to have to get creative if it's going to find the money to bring back one of its best defensemen from last season.

Vancouver Canucks: Will Brendan Gaunce Provide the Youth Injection?

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    Current Roster: 12 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $2.2 million

    The Vancouver Canucks have made it clear that they want to get younger this season. They're giving long looks at training camp to prospects like Nicklas Jensen, Bo Horvat, Hunter Shinkaruk and Brendan Gaunce.

    Though touted as more of a checking center, Gaunce has tallied two goals in two preseason games so far. He's a big body and is solid in the faceoff circle.

    Hunter Shinkaruk may show more flash, but Gaunce could stick around if he can maintain his level of play through the rest of camp.

Washington Capitals: Can an Australian Make It in the NHL?

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    Nathan Walker
    Nathan WalkerEvan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 7 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $665,000

    This many not be an urgent roster question, but it sure is a fun one.

    This story NHL.com explains how the Washington Capitals invited 19-year-old Nathan Walker to camp on a tryout contract. He looks determined to become the first-ever Australian to crack an NHL lineup.

    After discovering hockey at an early age, Walker traveled to the Czech Republic to immerse himself in the game, as hockey resources in his homeland are extremely limited. Last year, he moved to the USHL, and this year, he's looking to secure a big league contract.

    Walker's on the small side at 5'10" and 175 pounds, but he is showing tenacity in preseason. He stood out in the Kraft Hockeyville game and is continuing to make Caps brass pay attention.

     

Winnipeg Jets: Are Scheifele and Trouba Ready?

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    Current Roster: 13 forwards, 8 defense, 2 goaltenders

    Cap Space Available: $2.3 million

    The Winnipeg Jets are working to build their team by developing the prospects they've drafted.

    Heading into this season, the question is whether 2011 first-rounder Mark Scheifele and 2012's top pick, Jacob Trouba, are ready to join the likes of Evander Kane and Zach Bogosian.

    Schiefele spent the summer working with Gary Roberts to get stronger on his skates and is keen to make the jump. 

    With the departure of Ron Hainsey, there's room for Trouba to step in on the blue line, but his play so far in preseason hasn't been strong enough to guarantee he'll be in the opening night lineup. 

    Veteran Ian White is at Jets camp on a professional tryout and could be signed if Kevin Cheveldayoff doesn't think Trouba's ready to make the jump this year.

     

    Thanks for reading. Follow me on Twitter for lots more hockey news:


     

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