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?