PPP Salary Cap Challenge - Self Destructive Zones

Alex Ovechkin may not have enjoyed his icetime under Dale Hunter, but he won't have to worry about that on this team:

Forwards (positions in line-up may not be 100% accurate, like those Yahoo! top 25 lists last year):

Alexander Ovechkin                               Sidney Crosby                        Claude Giroux (yes, he's playing RW)
Loui Eriksson                                        Logan Couture                        Jeff Skinner
Jannik Hansen                                      Frans Nielsen                          Devante Smith-Pelly
Colin Greening                                      Andrew Shaw                          Nate Thompson
Ben Eager
Chris Thorburn


Zdeno Chara                                      Alex Pietrangelo
Oliver Ekman-Larsson                           Carl Gunnarsson
Adam Larsson                                     Slava Voynov
Mike Weaver


Henrik Lundqvist

Matt Hackett

(Apologies for the weird formatting. Evidently I do not know what I'm doing.)

So as you can see, my bottom six leaves, uh, a little to be desired. I started from an idea brought about when Plea From a Cat Named Felix mentioned few if any people had chosen Crosby, Malkin or Ovechkin in their lineups. Since I couldn't include both Crosby and Malkin or Ovechkin and Malkin on the same team, I decided to build around Crosby and Ovechkin. I thought it would be fun to include Claude Giroux in the mix, and figured Zdeno Chara and Henrik Lundqvist might as well tag along too.

Quite frankly, I stole a lot of ideas from other people. Aside from including Crosby and Ovechkin on the same team, and maybe Matt Hackett and some bottom sixers (woop dee doo) there aren't that many "original" choices made here, admittedly. The important thing in my mind is that I had fun, and that I ate up valuable work time in the process.

Obviously the top six looks fairly formidable and should be able to handle a heavy workload against tougher competition. The third line should be able to hold its own when called upon. Guys like Greening and Thompson should at least not be complete liabilities for the 6-8 minutes a game they play.

I was able to throw together a better Defensive unit than I was anticipating. Chara and Pietrangelo make for a nice first pairing, and Ekman-Larsson and Gunnarsson should nicely round out the top 4. Larsson and Voynov would likely get more sheltered minutes at first, and Mike Weaver obviously can do whatever the fuck he wants.

Henrik Lundqvist might be expensive, but he's pretty and he's a fairly good goaltender. Given the expensive nature of the rest of the roster, I opted to go with young and cheap (and massively unproven) in Matt Hackett, who did post a solid .921 svp in, well, 12 games.

Draft Breakdown:

2011 - Adam Larsson (1st Round), Andrew Shaw (5th Round)

2010 - Jeff Skinner (1st Round), Devante Smith-Pelly (2nd Round)

2009 - Oliver Ekman-Larsson (1st Round), Matt Hackett (3rd Round)

2008 - Alex Pietrangelo (1st Round), Slava Voynov (2nd Round)

2007 - Logan Couture (1st Round), Carl Gunnarsson (7th Round)

2006 - Claude Giroux (1st Round)

2005 - Sidney Crosby (1st Round), Colin Greening (7th Round)

2004 - Alexander Ovechkin (1st Round), Jannik Hansen (7th Round)

2003 - Loui Eriksson (2nd Round), Nate Thompson (6th Round) (Sadly Hugh Jessiman is a pending Unrestricted Free Agent)

2002 - Ben Eager (1st Round), Frans Nielsen (3rd Round)

2001 - Chris Thorburn (3rd Round)

2000 - Henrik Lundqvist (7th Round)

1996 - Zdeno Chara (3rd Round)

Undrafted - The Venerable Mike Weaver

Team Breakdown:

ANH - Devante Smith-Pelly

BOS - Zdeno Chara

BUF - None

CAL - None

CHI - Andrew Shaw

CAR - Jeff Skinner

COL - None

DAL - Loui Eriksson

DET - None

EDM - Ben Eager

FLA - Mike Weaver

LA - Slava Voynov

MIN - Matt Hackett

MTL - None

NJ - Adam Larsson

NYI - Frans Nielsen

NYR - Henrik Lundqvist

OTT - Colin Greening

PHX - Oliver Ekman-Larsson

PHI - Claude Giroux

PIT - Sidney Crosby

SJ - Logan Couture

STL - Alex Pietrangelo

TB - Nate Thompson

TOR - Carl Gunnarsson

VAN - Jannik Hansen

WSH - Alexander Ovechkin

WPG - Chris Thorburn

Cap Breakdown:

Link to the Cap Geek Calculator here. Fairly tight against the cap, not surprisingly. Looking forward a few years, the roster breaks down as follows:


2012/13 cap hit






Alex Ovechkin

9,538,462 9,538,462 9,538,462 9,538,462 9,538,462 9,538,462

Sidney Crosby

8,700,000 UFA

Loui Eriksson

4,250,000 4,250,000 4,250,000 4,250,000 UFA
Claude Giroux 3,750,000 3,750,000 RFA

Logan Couture

2,875,000 2,875,000 RFA
Frans Nielsen 2,750,000 2,750,000 2,750,000 2,750,000 UFA
Jeff Skinner 1,400,000 RFA
Jannik Hansen 1,350,000 1,350,000 UFA
Ben Eager 1,100,000 1,100,000 UFA
Nate Thompson 850,000 UFA
Devante Smith-Pelly 870,000 870,000 RFA
Chris Thorburn 866,667 866,667 UFA
Colin Greening 816,667 816,667 UFA
Andrew Shaw 565,000 565,000 RFA
Zdeno Chara 6,916,667 6,916,667 6,916,667 6,916,667 6,916,667 4,000,000
Alex Pietrangelo 3,166,666 RFA
Oliver Ekman-Larsson 1,750,000 RFA
Carl Gunnarsson 1,325,000 RFA
Mike Weaver 1,100,000 1,100,000 UFA
Slava Voynov 816,666 RFA
Adam Larsson 925,000 925,000 RFA
Henrik Lundqvist 6,875,000 6,875,000 UFA
Matt Hackett 900,000 RFA


55,890,000 44,548,463 23,455,129 23,455,129 16,455,129 13,538,462

So things look fairly bleak come July 2013, and even worse the following year. Guys like Skinner, Ekman-Larsson, Pietrangelo, Voynov and Gunnarsson will command raises of some kind come July 2013 (and there's Sid), while the following year, Giroux, Couture, and Larsson will all be getting paid and Lundqvist needs to be resigned. Essentially this team will be impossible to keep together for much length into the future. The Stanley Cup I'll win in 2012/13 might give my tenure as GM some shelf life, but I'll likely be hoping Brian Burke needs another Assistant GM come 2015 at the latest (if he still has a job, too). is a fan community that allows members to post their own thoughts and opinions on the Toronto Maple Leafs and hockey in general. These views and thoughts may not be shared by the editor of

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