Category Archives: Washington Capitals
Martin Erat is set to leave the Washington Capitals just months after joining the team from the Nashville Predators.
Forward Erat made the switch to the Capitals along with fourth-line center Michael Latta at the 2013 NHL Trade Deadline in April, with the highly-rated Filip Forsberg heading in the opposite direction.’
It’s public knowledge that Erat, owner of the penthouse in Capitals head coach Adam Oates’ doghouse, asked to be dealt. While there will be interest because Erat’s salary is $2.25 million lower than his cap hit next season, the fact that he’s now made two trade requests in less than 12 months hurts, even though no one could have predicted what’s happened in Washington.
Asked which team is the best he’s seen this season, McPhee said: “St. Louis. I didn’t realize some of their forwards are as good as they are.” He named Jaden Schwartz, Vladimir Sobotka and Vladimir Tarasenko.
The Capitals paid a steep price for Martin Erat on last year’s deadline day and it has not worked out well with zero goals in his last 23 games and he was a healthy scratch in the Capitals’ last game. Are there any teams interested in Erat? He has asked for a trade.
According to this article (http://hokej.idnes.cz/martin-erat-odchod-z-washingtonu-nhl-hokej-fjt-/nhl.aspx?c=A131125_120725_nhl_cig) Martin Erat wants out of Washington.
Among the free-agent centers still remaining is Mikhail Grabovski, a compliance buyout of the Toronto Maple Leafs, who bought out the final four years of his contract at $14.33 million.
Grabovski set career highs in 2010-11 when he recorded 29 goals and 29 assists, but struggled last season with nine goals, seven assists and a minus-10 rating in 48 games.
Ahead of Sunday’s NHL Draft, Washington Capitals general manager George McPhee expects that “there may be more [trade] activity in this one than other drafts” as all 30 teams have to adjust to a reduced salary cap, one that will slide from $70.2 million to $64.3 million next season.
“Particularly this year, teams are sort of more forthcoming on what they want to do,” he said at a pre-draft press conference at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. “Now, they have to get the guys they want to move out there because you only have so much flexibility.”
Yet McPhee made it clear Monday that if there is a deal to be made, it won’t involve goaltender Michal Neuvirth.
Defenseman requests a fresh start elsewhere
Capitals defenseman Jeff Schultz has requested a trade, according to his agent, Jarrett Bousquet.
Frustrated by a lack of playing time for the second year in a row and limited communication from two separate Washington coaching staffs — former coach Dale Hunter and current coach Adam Oates — Schultz wants a fresh start elsewhere.
Toronto Maple Leafs: The Leafs are in the market for a center and possibly a defensemen. It’s possible they won’t have to add on defense if Jake Gardiner proves he can stick around this time and make a difference. But the Leafs definitely are thin at center and could use help there, especially if they want to get back to the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time since 2004. One name being floated in Toronto is Mike Ribeiro, but it’s not clear what the Washington Capitals want to do with him. He is due to become an unrestricted free agent in July.
Ribiero is having a wonderful season. He leads the team in points (24) and assists (17) and is a big reason why Washington’s power play is in the top five of the league. But he is also an unrestricted free agent who turned 33 last month and could be looking for a raise from the $5 million he is making now. That would be a risk considering his age, especially in a year that will see the salary cap decline from $70 million to $64 million. Since the last lockout, only Saku Koivu has registered more than 50 points in each of the seasons when he was aged 33 to 35 (as of Feb. 1 in the season they played). Only five others have hit the 50-point mark twice.