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Recent Contracts Helping To Set The Market For Arbitration Eligible Nic Roy

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

The Golden Knights are already in salary cap hell. Currently sitting $200,000 short of the league’s upper limit, Vegas has just 19 players under contract making up a roster valued at $82.3 million.

That’s without UFA’s Reilly Smith and Mattias Janmark, without RFA’s Nic Roy, Keegan Kolesar, Brett Howden, and Nic Hague, and with just five players that can be buried in the AHL without any salary leftover.

No matter how you slice it, the Golden Knights are in quite a pinch for cash, and there are a lot of difficult decisions coming up.

Yes, I just copy/pasted the same three paragraphs from yesterday’s story on Nic Hague because they work perfectly for this one on another Nic, Nic Roy.

Roy turned 25-years-old in February and quietly (at least for me) turned in a season that will earn him a fairly significant pay raise.

In his second full season in the NHL, Roy shattered his career-high in every statistical category and did so playing mostly in a third line role with a rotating cast. He averaged just over 16 minutes a night which ranked 8th among everyday forwards in the Golden Knights lineup.

Despite the role, Roy posted 39 points, good for 6th most on the team, chipped in 3.5 point shares, the 6th most among forwards, and scored 15 goals, also good for 6th overall. He took nearly 1,000 faceoffs, played 78 of the 82 games (missing two for illness), and was a key contributor on both the power play and penalty kill.

He enters this offseason on an expiring contract as a restricted free agent (RFA) with arbitration rights. The qualifying offer for Roy will be just over the league minimum ($750,000) which will inevitably force the French-Canadian centerman to activate his option to file for arbitration.

So, what will that number look like?

We’ll start with a pair of contracts in the NHL that were signed yesterday. The Blue Jackets signed Jack Roslovic to a two-year $8 million ($4M AAV) contract and the Stars inked Denis Gurianov to a one-year deal worth $2.9 million. Here’s how each of these players stacks up with Roy in 2021-22.

Roslovic – 22
Roy – 15
Gurianov – 11

Roslovic – 45
Roy – 39
Gurianov – 31

Point Shares
Roslovic – 4.5
Roy – 3.5
Gurianov – 2.6

As you can see, Roy is pretty clearly right between these two players. And this is not considering the fact that Roy is better defensively than both of these guys. However, those numbers tend to be a bit high based on previous deals.

A few other players similar to Roy that signed contracts recently include Artturi Lehkonen ($2.3M AAV), Oskar Sundqvist ($2.75M AAV), Warren Foegele ($2.75M AAV), and Andrew Copp ($3.64M AAV).

Finally, there’s the Golden Knights comp, Chandler Stephenson. He signed a four-year deal with an AAV of $2.75 million after posting 22 points in 41 games and five more in 20 playoff games in his first season in Vegas. Of course, we know what has happened since, but at the time of signing the deal, the upside on Roy now is actually similar if not a bit higher than what it was for Stephenson on October 7th, 2020.

Roy led all RFA centers last season in cost per point, showing just how underpaid he was. His 39 points to go along with a $750,000 salary had him at just $19,230 per point. The league average for centers is about $100,000.

Add it all up, and it’s going to be an expensive arbitration hearing for Roy if indeed he and the Golden Knights make it there. Unfortunately for Vegas, arbitration doesn’t care about a team’s salary situation, and if they do make it to the hearing and Roy is awarded anything less than $4.5 million (which he will), the Golden Knights are forced to sign the contract.

Reasonably, Roy should be in line for somewhere between $2 and $4 million, probably shading a bit more towards the higher side of that ranger.

I’d be surprised if Roy isn’t in the Golden Knights’ plans for both 2022-23 and well beyond, which means that money will have to come from somewhere else.


VGK Cap Constraints Could Force Nic Hague To Hold Out

Next Podcast #270: Messy RFA Situation


  1. Henderson One

    McCrimmon should have been fired for placing the VGK in this position. Without some dramatic moves it will take years for the VGK to regain its footing.

  2. Original 6 ✅

    Buffalo is sitting on a lot of cap space cash 43 mil. they literally can grab Riley Smith. Nick Roy and any else’s free agent and they were turning the corner being a hand full. with all the cap cash they will looking at these 2 and Patrick Kane last year of contract roughly 8 mil left & from Buffalo

  3. I REALLY hope the VGK find a way to keep Roy! He has shown he can be a force for the team, and he’s still relatively young, so we could potentially see him quite a few years. He will grow more confident as he plays more, and his production will also grow. Keep him!!

  4. John Brown

    Goodbye Dadanov, Janmark, Brossoit, Patrick and Coghlan.

    Gives you $11, 240,000.

    Plenty of money to resign Smith and RFAs and gives you 7 on defense and 11 on offense and 2 goalies.

    Need TWO more forwards.

    Option #1 Bring up two from Silver Knights.

    Option #2 Trade Smith for $3,000 forward and TWO $1,000,000 forwards.

    There are a LOT of good 25-28 year old forwards coming off their 1st NHL contract and 28-30 year old forwards with good numbers that have $1,500,000 contracts that can be got for 3 years at $3,000,000.

    Lots of UFA forwards on the list

    • JB,

      While I don’t disagree with getting rid of the players you listed. You can’t really count Janmark as a savings he is UFA and his numbers are not included in our current cap situation. Also, removing Coghlan hurts our cap situation he is the lowest paid player on the roster replacing him with another player simply increases to a bad cap problem.

      Why would anyone trade for Smith he is a UFA.

      What I’m really not sure about is if VGK is going to want to pay Hague what he is due. This team already has 5 Defensemen making 2.75 million or greater and I don’t believe there is a team in the league with 6 Dmen making 2.75 million or better.

      As for Nic Roy I would like to see him resigned at a reasonable price but I just don’t see why Roy would do it.

  5. Ken,

    Great article I really enjoyed it!

    I thought Bret Howden played really well when he was healthy and at the right price will be good player in the future. I would really like to see VGK resign him but he is an RFA and is eligible for arbitration. Will you be doing an article in the future on Howden and if not what do think he will cost VGK to resign?

  6. Rick

    Winnipeg is looking at Montgomery. He’d be the best choice for Vegas, player’s coach, forecheck, creative offense.

    • THE hockey GOD

      dallas and detroit
      will all have a head coach before Foley
      gets out his check book.

      Unless he promotes Craig.

      • knights fan in minny

        is that what your crystal ball says or is that more babble

        • THE hockey GOD

          VGK 2020/1 is turning out to be very poor vintage years for the grape stomper.

  7. THE hockey GOD

    first Hague
    now Roy

    boy where’s the Accountant when you need him ?

  8. THE hockey GOD

    Roy is Haula’s replacement.

  9. THE hockey GOD

    Paul Stastny appears to be likely to test free agency this summer, but he is expected to keep the door open for Winnipeg.

    “I’m getting older in my career so I don’t really have that much time left. So really for us, it’s that I just want to win,” Stastny told The Athletic on Monday. “It’s finding a good opportunity where you know you can help the team and you’re a good fit. Obviously it’s always hard thinking like that because there’s so many good teams you just never know what happens throughout the year.” He added that waiting to see what teams do in terms of coaching decisions and player personnel changes will factor into his choice as well.

    • knights fan in minny

      this is old news 3 days ago keep up

      • THE hockey GOD

        Monday is TWO days ago, not three, try to keep up. “Stastny told The Athletic on Monday.”

        • knights fan in minny

          i saw it on tsn sunday keep up

          • THE hockey GOD

            it’s not all about you

            self centered twit

          • knights fan in minny

            no one said it was all about me you dumb ass babbler

  10. knights fan in minny

    no one said it was all about me you dumb ass babbler

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