Devil of a deal
This story up on TSN.ca is lauding Lou Lamoriello getting the rest of his players signed to deals, but the one thing I haven't seen anywhere is an accurate breakdown of where the Devils now stand under the cap. By my calculations, Brian Gionta's new $12-million, three-year contract alone should put them close to the $44-million figure — which means New Jersey is out of the woods, but just barely.
Depending on the size of the deals Paul Martin, David Hale, Eric Rasmussen and Scott Clemmensen signed, Lamoriello is in a position where he's far too tightly up against the cap.
Let's go with conservative estimates and say Martin gets $1.7-million, Hale receives $800,000, Rasmussen gets $600,000 and Clemmensen gets $500,000. Here's how the team's salaries breakdown:
Forwards, 12 players: $26.15-million
Defence, six players: $11.55-million
Goal, two players: $5.7-million
That's a tough, tough figure to manoeuvre under all season, and teams like the Vancouver Canucks last year were shuttling players to and from the AHL on a per game basis because of how close they were to the cap. That's not conducive to winning hockey games, nor does it allow for any flexibility to make deals during the year.
Even still, it's rather impressive New Jersey can even ice this skeleton roster given how dire things looked a few days ago.