The Penguins have 7 forwards signed for next season at a cap hit of $32.4 million. Those are Kunitz, Crosby, Dupuis, Bennett, Malkin, Neal, and Adams.
They have 5 defensmen signed next season at a cap hit of $17.1 million. They are Scuderi, Letang, Martin, Maatta, and Bortuzzo.
Fleury and Zatkoff are signed at a cap hit of $5.6 million. Total cap hit for all signed players is $55.1 million.
They have RFA's in Sutter ($2.07M), Despres ($0.84M), Megna ($0.925M), Gibbons ($0.55M), and Sill ($0.55M).
They also have UFA's who they might sign in Jokinen $(3M), Pyatt ($1.55M), Glass ($1.1M), Vitale ($0.55M), Orpik ($3.75M), and Niskanen ($2.3M)
Of the FA they need to sign 7 forwards and 2 d-men with just short of $16M in cap space.
Here are my estimates on approximately what it will cost to sign those guys or their equivalent.
Sutter at $3.5M
Glass at $1.5M
Vitale at $0.75M
Sill at $0.6M
Megna at $0.6M
Gibbons at $0.6M
Despres at $1.2M (hard to guess this one as giving 1 way contract and contract length will have a big effect)
Orpik/Niskanen at $4M
That will leave $3.23M to sign one forward and leave yourself some cap space for call ups. Or you could let both Orpik and Niskanen walk and call up Dumoulin at a cap hit of $0.832M and have $6.4M in cap space to sign the other forward. To most people here that probably sounds appealing, but then you have to look at who the UFA's available are. http://capgeek.com/free-agents/?year_id ... _type_id=2
and remember that pretty much every team is going to have money to spend.
If you are Shero do you let both Orpik and Niskanen walk and then try to sign one of these high cost UFA's? Do you let them walk and try to sign two of the UFA's at roughly $3M a piece or do you sign Orpik or Niskanen and then try to get a lower priced UFA to fill in? You could also sign one of Orpik/Niskanen and a lower cost UFA this summer and look to trade a D-man next season for a younger and lower cap hit forward, which would then allow you to move Dumoulin up to replace that D-man. To me the last approach is the ideal way to go about it as you get a younger forward at a lower cap hit than the FA route allows, but it's also the most difficult to pull off.