Team Canada’s cap hit at the World Hockey Championships

Updated: May 10, 2015 at 4:46 pm by Cam Lewis

Team Canada is icing one of its best rosters at the World Hockey Championship in recent memory. The team features a wealth of NHL superstars up front that could (really should) help Canada win its first Gold Medal since 2007, or even its first medal overall since 2009. Even though the roster is made up of players who didn’t make the playoffs, the team is stacked, and they look like they could be a Stanley Cup contender on paper (but they may have to fix their goaltending first).

Before this team could play in the NHL, though, not only would they have to figure out their goaltending situation, they would also have to become cap compliant. How big is this stacked Canadian World Championship team’s cap hit for the 2015-16 season? 

Forwards:

Taylor Hall – $6.00 million 

Sean Couturier – $1.75 million

Matt Duchene – $6.00 million

Brayden Schenn – $2.50 million

Jordan Eberle – $6.00 million 

Cody Eakin – $1.90 million

Claude Giroux – $8.275 million

Nathan MacKinnon – $3.775 million

Tyler Ennis – $4.60 million

Tyler Toffoli – RFA ($0.870 million)

Ryan O’Reilly – $6.00 million

Sidney Crosby – 8.70 million

Jason Spezza – $7.50 million

Tyler Seguin – 5.75 million

Total (13 players signed, one unsigned) – $68.75 million

What did I say? This team is stacked, and it’s really top heavy. They have 13 forwards signed heading into next season, and only Tyler Toffoli would need a new contract. Maybe they could use him as trade bait for a new goalie? Or since they have 13 forwards already, they could let some other team take a stab at him through an RFA offer sheet and pick up the draft picks. Regardless, Canada only has two forwards making under $2.00 million next season, and eight making over $5.00 million. If the cap stays where it is right now, they would be able to fit all of their forwards under the cap ceiling, but nobody else. 

Defencemen: 

Dan Hamhuis – $4.50 million

Aaron Ekblad – $3.775 million

Jake Muzzin – $4.00 million

Tyson Barrie – $2.60 million

Patrick Wiercioch – $2.00 million

David Savard – $1.30 million

Brent Burns – $5.760 million

Total (seven players signed) – $23.935 million

Goaltenders:

Martin Jones – RFA ($0.550 million)

Mike Smith – $5.667 million 

Total (one player signed, one unsigned) – $5.667 million

Team Total (21 players signed, two unsigned) – $98.325 million

Can you see where this team’s weakness is? They have a decent defensive core, nothing too fancy, but not bad, and it only costs them roughly $24 million. But then you get to their goalies and it makes you shudder. Mike Smith at $5.667 million is pretty ugly value, considering he was one of, if not the worst, starting goalie in the league last season. If it were up to me, I would dump him for picks, save the cap space and just roll with Jones at the league minimum. 

Anyways, this team has a whopping $98.325 million cap hit, meaning they’re going to be nearly $30 million over the cap, depending on what that number ends up being for next season. Looking at some of the other teams in the tournament, it would be pretty embarrassing if team Canada couldn’t at least take home a medal. 

Team USA

Forwards:

Jack Eichel – Unsigned 

Ben Smith – $1.50 million

Nick Bonino – $1.90 million

Steve Moses – Unsigned 

Jimmy Vesey – Unsigned 

Dylan Larkin – Unsigned 

Trevor Lewis – $1.525 million

Matt Hendricks – $1.850 million

Jeremy Morin – $0.800 million

Brock Nelson – RFA ($2.825 million)

Charlie Coyle – $3.20 million

Mark Arcobello – RFA ($0.600)

Dan Sexton – Unsigned 

Anders Lee – RFA ($0.851 million)

Total (six players signed, eight unsigned) – $10.775 million

Defencemen:

Seth Jones – $3.225 million

Connor Murphy – $1.076 million

Mike Reilly – Unsigned 

John Moore Jr. – RFA ($0.851 million)

Zach Redmond – $0.750 million

Justin Faulk – $4.833 million

Torey Krug – $3.40 million

Jake Gardiner – $4.050 million

Total (six players signed, two unsigned) – $17.334 million

Goaltenders:

Jack Campbell – RFA ($1.340 million)

Alex Lyon – Unsigned 

Connor Hellebyuck – $0.925 million

Total (one player signed, two unsigned) – $0.925 million

Team Total (13 players signed, 12 unsigned) – $29.034 million

Team USA’s most expensive forward, Charlie Coyle, would be one of Team Canada’s cheapest forwards. The USA only has six of their forwards signed because a bunch of them are college hockey players, but even with all of them signed, I doubt this forward group costs much much more than $22 million. The team’s strength looks like it’s on the blue line, and even though they don’t have an NHL goalie, somehow, it looks like Team USA has the advantage in net. They have half of their team unsigned, so if I had to venture a guess, this team would have a cap hit of around $50 million with everybody sorted out. 

After that, most of these teams have very few, if any, NHL players. Sweden has 13, just like the United States does, Russia has seven, Finland, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia all have six, and Switzerland has four. Canada really should be very successful in this tournament, judging by the sheer quantity and quality of NHL talent they have, but hey, that’s what makes the World Championship fun. 

All salary information is from NHL Numbers