For those of you in a Black Friday shopping mood, here is a quick reminder that you can pick up a Canes and Coffee coffee cup for just $18.75 (in North Carolin) or $17.50 (outside North Carolina) with shipping and handling included.

Just click on the PayPal link at the bottom of this page, make a credit card or PayPal payment for the appropriate amount and be sure to include your address in the notes, and your coffee cup will be on the way.

Canes and Coffee cups could make a great gift for a Hurricanes fan who already has 25 things with a Hurricanes logo on it and could use something unique. The price range and eclectic nature is also perfect for the anonymous gift grab bag events where people say, “What’s this?”


Today’s Daily Cup of Joe goes with the Black Friday theme and discusses the current bargains on the Carolina Hurricanes roster.

Though it will not last as Hurricanes players come off inexpensive entry-level contracts and require raises, the team is currently 30th out of 31 teams in the NHL in terms of salary cap hit for the 2017-18 season. At $59.5 million the Hurricanes are more than $15 million below the league’s $75 million salary cap that many teams push up against.


The entry-level and inexpensive deals on defense

The biggest component in the Hurricanes being so far below the salary cap but still able to field a competitive team is the volume of contributing players who are still on entry-level deals that pay less than $1 million per season. All of Jaccob Slavin, Brett Pesce and Noah Hanifin are playing the final season on his entry-level contract. Haydn Fleury has two years remaining on his entry-level contract. Despite not being on their entry-level deals, Trevor van Riemsdyk and Klas Dahlbeck are also being paid less than $1 million for the 2017-18 season. When one totals it up, the six of the Hurricanes seven defensemen have almost exactly a $5 million salary COMBINED. In today’s NHL, that is seemingly impossible. Justin Faulk who has a $5.5 million actual salary and $4.8 million salary cap hit for the 2017-18 season, is paid more than the rest of the blue line combined and nearly matches them on salary cap hit.

As noted, the current bargain of the century expires at the end of the 2017-18 season when Slavin, Pesce and Hanifin start their second contracts. Slavin is scheduled to make $5.3 million per year starting in 2018-19 and Pesce $4.0 million.


The entry-level and inexpensive deals at forward

At forward, only Sebastian Aho is on his entry-level deal (which runs through the 2018-19 season, but he is one of six forwards who will earn less than $1.5 million in 2017-18. The others are Derek Ryan, Joakim Nordstrom, Josh Jooris, Brock McGinn and Phil Di Giuseppe. The difference between defense and forward is that the players on inexpensive deals at forward are largely depth players for whom a sub-$1.5 million is fair value.

Nonetheless, the six forwards represent another big chunk of roster whose total combined salary cap hit is $6 million for the 2017-18 season.


Many of the pricier contracts are cheap too

In addition to the sheer bargains on entry-level or second deals, many of the Hurricanes priciest contracts represent bargains. In an NHL where a second tier for forwards salaries has pushed up into the $8 million range, Jeff Skinner and his 37 goals from 2016-17 look cheap at only $5.7 million salary cap hit and $6 million salary. Similarly, Jordan Staal’s $6 million annual salary has gradually become inexpensive based on today’s prices.

And in a middle tier, Elias Lindholm and Teuvo Teravainen who are both paid just under $3 million for the 2017-18 could prove to be incredible bargains if they have break out years. In that vein, Teravainen and his $2.86 million 2017-18 salary has looked dirt cheap of late. The same could easily become true for Lindholm if he can similarly find a hot streak.

The challenge ahead

The immediate challenge ahead in terms of maintaining bargain status will be re-signing Noah Hanifin, Teuvo Teravainen and Elias Lindholm next summer. All three are set to join the ranks of Slavin and Pesce as players coming off inexpensive contracts with the potential to cost significantly more for next season.


What say you Caniacs?


1) Which of the more expensive contracts (Staal, Skinner, Faulk, Darling, Williams, etc.) would you say represents the best value relative to contribution and/or fair value?


2) Which Hanifin, Lindholm or Teravainen do you think will represent the biggest challenge to get re-signed at a reasonable rate next year?


Go Canes!

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