Monday, July 03, 2017

Caps Dump Johansson in the Swamp

2017 Season July 1st Status
To New Jersey Pos Age GP Goals Points Years Cap
Marcus Johansson F 26 82 24 58 2 $4.6m
To Washington Pos Age GP G/W Points Years Cap
2018 2nd Round Draft Pick
2018 3rd Round Draft Pick

It was a necessary evil for the Washington Capitals to dump some salary after signing the massive extension for Evgeny Kuznetsov on Sunday afternoon and at nearly $5 million per season, the easiest piece to move and not rock the boat too much, was forward Marcus Johansson.

The New Jersey Devils are getting serious about turning their fortunes around, especially with the luck they had at the draft lottery, getting to pick number one, they may be able to expedite that process, given that they are a budget team with cap space still to use... enter the Johansson deal.

Johansson is a talented play-maker and could serve very well with the likes of Taylor Hall, Travis Zajac, Kyle Palmieri or their top prospect Nico Hischier, so right off the get go, they are able to help solidify their top six, if not top line, with this acquisition.

In order to get this deal done, they were able to part with a couple of picks they had received from other teams, which makes this a much easier deal to push through, since they don't lose any of their own futures, these were just bonus picks in the end.

Salary CapWe know all about the Capitals' cap situation from the Kuznetsov post explanation, but we know nothing of the Devils', since they haven't been touched on since the Pool Outlook posts ages ago.  The addition of Johansson and another free agent forward in Brian Boyle, boosted their overall cap number to $60.9 million, now above the cap floor and still $14.1 million away from the ceiling, with a full projected roster of 23 players.

The Devils still have Damon Severson and Mirco Mueller to re-sign from restricted free agency and they can add their top prospects immediately, which we expect they will, but they will remain a budget team for the time being, one has to believe.

This deal certainly won't hurt the Devils any, as they were not a great looking team on paper, when the off-season kicked off.  Adding more offensive help is only going to boost the potential of Cory Schneider being a better hockey pool goalie, as he didn't have much for help on most nights, getting hung out to dry by his teammates most often.  The Devils are still a ways away from being a playoff team, but this move here puts them in a much better position than a couple days ago and that's all you can ask for as a fan.
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