Welcome to the DailyFaceoff UFA preview. Over the next 15 days, we’ll be profiling the top 30 players in this years UFA class, as listed by TSN. Contract information is from our friends at Puckpedia. Full UFA list via puckpedia here. Analytics provided by hockeyviz.com and naturalstattrick.com. Contract projections are done by evolving-hockey.com with the presumption contracts are signed between Oct. 9th and Nov. 9th.
Today, we’re looking at the 16th ranked Sami Vatanen, the 15th ranked T.J. Brodie, the 14th ranked Mikael Granlund, the 13th ranked Braden Holtby, the 12th ranked Kevin Shattenkirk, the 11th ranked Tyson Barrie, the 10th ranked Erik Haula and the 9th ranked Evgenii Dadonov. The 17th ranked Brenden Dillon re-signed with the Washington Capitals.
After being traded from the Anaheim Ducks to the New Jersey Devils and saw his offensive production stay at the same track just below half a point per game. Known for his ability to move the puck, Vatanen scored five goals and 23 points on a depleted Devils roster. He’ll make a fine top-four defenceman that plays the power-play as a right-shot.
Contract projection: Three-year, $4.581-m AAV.
Granlund is a solid player in both ends of the ice. He makes a offensive impact one percent above league average and defence at a two percent rate above league average. This past year, he scored 17 goals and 30 points in 63 games — a down year by his standards.
Contract projection: Seven-year, $6.625-m AAV.
Brodie has spent his full 10 year career with the Calgary Flames and has been solid as a two-way defenceman. His underlying numbers in both ends of the rink are tremendous with a three percent impact above league in the offensive zone and a nine percent impact above league average in the defensive zone. Brodie is a very solid top-four defenceman.
Contract projection: Three-year, $4.909-m AAV.
It’s hard to imagine Holtby playing anywhere but Washington, but alas that appears to be the case for next season. He’s coming off his worst season in the NHL with a .897 save percentage and a -16.76 GSAA. I think he’s a good bet to rebound, but interested teams should tread lightly.
Contract projection: N/A
Why are teams so scared of signing Kevin Shattenkirk? He struggled to find a contract last year before signing with the Lightning on August 5th. He showed everyone who passed on him wrong scoring eight goals and 34 points in 70 games last year. At 31, he probably won’t get a big contract but he’s a solid second or third pairing defenceman.
Contract projection: Seven-year, $5.607-m AAV.
There’s talk of Tyson Barrie signing a one-year deal and that would be an interesting development for someone who had a major down year with the Leafs. Barrie didn’t have the high end offensive output he’s used to, but he still put up five goals and 39 points in 70 games. He’s an offensive guy and a powerplay quarterback, so don’t expect big things in his own zone.
Contract projection: Seven-year, $7.154-m AAV.
“Where in the world is Erik Haula” is a common question these days. In the last three years he’s played for the Vegas Golden Knights, Carolina Hurricanes and Florida Panthers. Over that time, he’s only played in 63 games scoring 14 goals and 31 points. Haula has struggled otherwise.
Contract projection: Four-year, $.234-m AAV.
Dadonov is a very good top-six player. He’s scored 202 points in 280 games over his career, including 53 goals and 117 points in 151 games over the last two seasons. He posts solid impacts in both end of the ice: five percent above league average in the offensive zone and two percent above league average in the defensive zone. He’ll make an impact wherever he signs.
Contract projection: Six-year, &7001-m AAV.
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