The unrestricted free agent forwards this year is a weak group of players who are available. They are all some combination of old and bad. If the player is good, they are older and if they are younger, they are not that good of a player. There is no real middle ground and the best players are older guys who are being traded because of cap issues and who wants to help a team get out of cap problems. To hell with that. Throw offersheets at those teams instead and watch the general managers sweat even more. (Note, some of these offers are pending the Jets re-acquiring their third round pick from next year).
Compensation amounts can be found here.
This is unrealistic and probably won't happen, but the Winnipeg Jets do need a plan for the left-wing position as Andrew Ladd ages and possibly leaves and Saad is as good of an option as any. He has learned from possession god Marian Hossa how to control the puck and drive play. He was used as a bit of a protector of Brad Richards so Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane could be split up. He could replace Ladd in a heartbeat. He would cost money; probably around $6 000 000, but a young, skilled player is worth that. If anything the offersheet with put the Chicago Blackhawks in a more precarious cap position and there is nothing wrong with that.
After offersheeting and failing to acquire Brandon Saad whilst ensuring the Blackhawks are in more cap troubles, the Jets should go after Marcus Kruger who will probably be priced out of the team at this point. Yes, Kruger is a fourth line centre, but he is a really good and useful fourth line centre who does things like start in the defensive zone and end up in the offensive zone and he sometimes even gets decapitated. In all honesty, Kruger would probably seem like a pricey fourth-liner coming in at roughly $2 000 000, but that is around the same the Jets paid Slater the past season for none of what Kruger brings to the table. Would the fourth line score more? Nope. Would the fourth line do things that would let the other three lines score more? Yep. Would Kruger get punched in the face a lot? Nope, but he does tend to lose his head and end up okay, so we will call it even.
I am not yet done with my reign of terror on the Central Division. Valdimir Tarasenko is a terror who is still giving Mark Stuart nightmares in June and that should be reason enough to offersheet him. The St. Louis Blues have room to match an offersheet but who cares. One of the great reasons to offersheet guys is to mess with other teams cap structures and make it hard for them to be able to keep a team together. Some offersheets are not able actually getting a player, but about causing complete chaos and forcing a team to get worse in the long run. The Blues will have to re-sign Jaden Schwartz and a host of other good, young players soon so screwing up the cap structure could be useful for next off-season.
Bring the Manitoba boy home...or at least bungle up the Columbus Blue Jackets' salary cap a bit more trying to do so. The Jackets have a series of bad contracts on the books that makes keeping players a little bit harder. The Jets should totally take advantage of this and go after Calvert, who will not cost much to actually acquire if Columbus decides not to match and if they do their cap situation becomes slightly more difficult to navigate. Win-win situation.
Okay, he is not an established NHL player yet, but his name is Teemu. Not sold Winnipeg fans? He scores goals by the dozen in the AHL and can even score in the NHL when given the chance. His name is Teemu Pulkkinen and signing him to an offersheet could bring in an already developed young player for a minimal amount. If the offersheet is played right, he would not even block the Jets youth that may or may not be NHL quality. If the Wings match, less cap space for other players and we can all be happy about that.
If Marcus Kruger becomes your fourth line centre, there needs to be
a more seasoned an older player on the wing to help handle the defensive zone starts. Enter Landon Ferraro. Ferraro could be had for next to nothing and he could pay off in a big, non-scoreboard way...more Ray Ferraro commentary for games. Okay, maybe not. But Ferraro was impressive when called upon by the Detroit Red Wings, but he is too young for their team so he is lacking in NHL games. But I am sure he has been touched by Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg, so it is all good.
Not really, but Peter Chiarelli looks like he is not only going to be the hero I want, but the troll I deserve when he offersheets Hamilton and the Boston Bruins cannot match because of the salary cap issues that Chiarelli created. Go on and troll Peter, you can only gain GOAT status from this move.
All of these moves are not possible because of picks and it is unlikely that any of them would happen because general managers are too nice to each other, but the value of offersheets is not always in getting the player you offersheet, but in creating a salary cap issue for a team that means you can get a lesser player from them or they are forced into a trade that they do not want to make to accommodate the offersheet that was made. It is rather ingenious and this summer seems ripe for offersheets if general managers want to be bold and cut throat all at once.