Certain offseasons are easier to navigate than others when you are trying to peg roster moves a specific team is going to make. This year is a difficult one to predict what the Pittsburgh Penguins are going to do. They have minimal cap space, they are dangling a point per game winger that has a ton of control over the situation, and there are other players like Olli Maatta’s whose status is up in the air.
The lack of cap space nerfs potential discussions about the UFA market. It’s impossible to know how much space the Penguins will have. If they do move Kessel what are they getting in return? Is Olli Maatta going to be a strict salary dump or will they be looking to take on a similar contract back? Until we have those answers I have no idea what kind of cap space the Penguins will be working with.
As of right now you are looking at the status quo for the Penguins. Per Cap Friendly the Penguins have about 3.216M in cap space. This does not include Marcus Pettersson’s extension which will more than likely fall between 1-2M, it does not include extensions to the other RFA’s Teddy Blueger and Zach Aston-Reese. That effectively takes up the space they have. Cap Friendly’s estimated salary expenditure for the Penguins is $82,633,300. If the cap is 83M then there is no space left for even a league minimum contract.
The Stanley Cup Final is going to end one way or another on Wednesday evening and after that the moratorium on teams making big roster moves will be lifted. Things will start to move fast and we’ll have a better understanding of the direction the Penguins are going to go in.
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