Anthony Cirelli, Tampa Bay Lightning, C
The Lightning are in a complicated cap situation with $0 left with 2 RFAs still needing to be signed. Anthony Cirelli is an extremely underrated center with 2nd line potential upside. Cirelli was on pace for more than 50 points and would have gotten a huge raise if it wasn’t for the Lightning’s lack of cap space. Just like Sergachev who was just signed to a short team friendly deal, Cirelli could sign a $3-$4 million contract on a two year deal.
Projected Contract: $3.5 million for two years
Erik Cernak, Tampa Bay Lightning, RD
Just like Cirelli, Cernak will most likely sign a team-friendly deal to stay with the Lightning. Cernak had 12 points last season, but was a big part of their defense in their Stanley Cup victory. The Lightning are in big cap trouble and will have to sign Cernak to a short term deal with less money. A contract between $2-$3 million on a two year deal is most likely.
Projected Contract: $2.5 million for two years
Pierre-Luc Dubois, Columbus Blue Jackets, C
The Blue Jackets have made some significant moves this offseason, spending money to bring in talent. Now, they are left with a little over $9 million dollars to sign their franchise centerman, Dubois. Dubois was on pace for about 60 points before the stoppage and has shown his elite potential in the playoffs. The Blue Jackets are considering locking him up with an 8 year deal around $7-$8 million.
Projected Contract: $7.5 million for eight years
Strome has had a very interesting career so far, being a former third overall pick however never found his groove in Arizona. Then he was flipped to Chicago where he bounced back, but had a down year this past season. The Blackhawks have $5 million left in cap space and Strome will most likely receive a short-term “prove it” deal between $3-$4 million.
Projected Contract: $3 million for two years
Vince Dunn, St.Louis Blues, LD
The Blues have a key RFA they need to get signed in Vince Dunn who has had a big impact on their defense. Dunn will become an important part to the Blues defense, since Alex Pietrangelo has just left in free agency. The Blues only have just over a $1 million left in cap space which won’t be enough to sign Dunn. If the Blues are able to clear up some cap space, Dunn could probably look at a 1 year contract between $3-$4 million.
Projected Contract: $3 million for one year
Jesper Bratt, New Jersey Devils, LW
Bratt is one of the most underrated free agents with a ton of potential. Bratt was a late round steal and could turn out to be a very solid top 6 winger. The Devils have over $17 million in cap space and will most likely sign Bratt to a short-term contract. Bratt could earn between $3-$4 million on a 3 year deal.
Projected Contract: $3 million for three years
MacKenzie Blackwood, New Jersey Devils, G
Blackwood is a promising young goalie for the Devils that played great in front of the shaky Devils defense last season. The Devils are a little hesitant to sign Blackwood to a massive deal yet, but could sign him to a short term deal to see if he is the real deal. Blackwood could see a contract between $3-$5 million on a 2 year contract.
Projected Contract: $4 million for two years
Mathew Bazal, New York Islanders
Barzal is the biggest name RFA who has been in rumors of an offer sheet. The Islanders recently received some news that Johnny Boychuk has retired due to his injuries which saves $6 million in cap space. However, the Islanders now only have $4 million in cap space which won’t be enough to sign Barzal. If the Islanders manage to clear cap space, Barzal could be looking at a short term contract before his big pay day.
Projected Contract: $7 million for two years