Best : Alex DeBrincat ($778,333)
It is still early but it looks like Alex DeBrincat might be one of the biggest steals of the 2016 NHL draft. He only comes at a $778,333 cap-hit for one more season, which is a huge bargain for the Chicago Blackhawks.
But if DeBrincat gets another 20-goal season next year, it will be interesting to see what Chicago does with his contract and if they are able to keep him there.
Worst: Brent Seabrook ($6,875,000)
To be fair Brent Seabrook was a huge part of the Blackhawks’ past Stanley Cup wins.
He might go down as one the best defenseman to ever play for the franchise. But at 33-years-old and with his game on the decline, Seabrook’s contract is gradually becoming one of the biggest setbacks for the team moving forward.
He comes at a $6,875,000 cap-hit for five more seasons. It is anyone’s guess whether he will be able to play out the remainder of his contract in Chicago. But with how things are going right now it seems like a buyout might happen sooner than later.
Best: Mikko Rantanen, ($894,167)
Still, on his entry-level contract, Mikko Rantanen is already one of the best offensive players in the NHL. No doubt he will get paid when he signs his contract extension soon.
It appears that he will be a special player for the franchise for a long, long time. Financially, it will be intriguing to see if he gets paid more than Nathan MacKinnon on his next deal.
The Colorado Avalanche have done a nice job signing players to reasonable contracts over the past several years. Currently, there doesn’t seem to be a noticeably bad contract on the roster.
In fact, some people may even argue that Nathan Mackinnon is underpaid, as he only comes at a $6,300,000 cap-hit for the next four seasons.
Best: Tyler Seguin, ($5,750,000)
Tyler Seguin is playing out the final year of his six-year $34,500,000 contract he signed with the Boston Bruins several years ago.
In hindsight, the Dallas Stars won the Seguin trade by a landslide. They were able to capitalize on Seguin’s development into an elite NHL sniper.
His new eight-year deal at $9,850,000 kicks in next year. Time will tell if he can live up to his new contract.
Worst: Jason Spezza ($7,500,000
At 35-years-old, it’s hard to call Jason Spezza an elite offensive player anymore. Luckily for the Stars, Spezza’s $7,500,000 cap-hit comes off the books next year.
It looks like both sides might be ready to move on. Regardless of whether he is still in the NHL next year, Spezza will likely have to take a pay cut wherever he goes next year.
Best: Devan Dubnyk ($4,333,333)
Devan Dubnyk has been a solid starter for the Minnesota Wild for the past several seasons. At 32, it looks like he should have some more years of good hockey left.
For a starting goalie, he comes at a reasonable $4,333,333 cap-hit.
Playoff success has been an issue, but many teams in the NHL would love to have a starting goalie like Dubnyk on their roster at his current cap hit.
Overall, the Minnesota Wild seem to be one of the best financially managed clubs in the divisions. As there doesn’t appear to be any eye-popping bad contracts on the team right now.
Best: Calle Jarnkrok ($2,000,000)
Calle Jarnkrok has quietly been one of the most consistent forwards for the Nashville Predators over the past few seasons.
He is an excellent role player, who can chip in around 15 goals and 35 points a year. This makes him a pretty good bargain at a $2,000,000 cap-hit.
At 27, it looks like Jarnkrok might have even more upside and can possibly be a 20-goal and 45 points player some day.
Similar to the Minnesota Wild, the Nashville Predators have been well managed financially. They seem to have handed out contracts that are fair for both sides and should be able to ice a very competitive team for the next few years.
St. Louis Blues
Best : Colton Parayko ($5,500,000)
At only 25, with his career on the upswing, Colton Parayko’s contract might look better and better as time goes on.
The Blues have him at a $5,500,000 cap-hit for three more years and during that time he might develop into one of the most dominant defensemen in the NHL for a long, long time.
Worst: Tyler Bozak, $5,000,000
Tyler Bozak is not a horrible NHL player by any means. In fact, many teams would love to have him on their roster for some secondary offense.
But, comparatively speaking, the Blues might have overpaid a bit to have him as the team’s third-line center. Coming at a $5,000,000, the 32 year-old only makes $500,000 less than Colton Parayko - making his contract a difficult one to justify.
Best: Patrik Laine ($925,000)
Winnipeg Jet fans are enjoying every moment of Patrik Laine right now, especially with him still playing on his entry-level contract.
It’s anyone guess how much Laine will demand next year, but given his production so far, one can say that Laine is one of the best pure goal scorers to come into the NHL since Alex Ovechkin.
So, the Jets will have to be prepared to pay up to keep his services, which might mean several cap casualties along the way.
Like many teams in this division, the contracts have been handled quite reasonably in Winnipeg. The Jets should continue to be a strong team for the next several years with a good mix of young and old players.
What's your take on these contracts? Do you agree or disagree? Let us know in the comments section below.