Flames' cap tap still flowing 0
Calgary Flames GM Jay Feaster insists he still has carte blanche to spend to the salary-cap ceiling, if he so desires.
Whether he will remains to be seen.
Flames fans got a bit of a scare Monday when Rogers Sportsnet's Roger Millions suggested on Twitter the Flames' would no longer be amongst the NHL's biggest spenders as they have been for several years.
"Told #Flames will not be cap team anymore. In fact, expect them to be around 55 Million when hockey is played again," wrote Millions, the host of Flames broadcasts.
His posting came just as Feaster was addressing hundreds of season-ticket holders, prompting one tech-savvy seat-holder to ask the GM if it was true.
"We will be a cap team," Feaster told the Sun yesterday. "Ownership has not wavered from that commitment."
Fans would have cause for concern if the highly-profitable organization were to arbitrarily order Feaster to slash his spending, which is why it was significant for Feaster to confirm he does not have any spending restrictions imposed on him by ownership.
Given the fact spending to the cap obviously doesn't guarantee success, Feaster added the onus is on him to spend the money wisely.
He also pointed out that perhaps the club could be under the cap if indeed the organization's desire to get younger is realized as entry-level players make less money than most veterans.
That said, pegging exactly how much cap room the Flames might have by puck drop is an exercise in futility as the cap will be a moving target this summer.
The Flames currently sit at $50 million in salaries and have $20 million in cap space under the assumption this year's record $3.3 billion in league revenues will push next year's cap to $70.3 million or higher.
That's a dangerous assumption, however, as it's evident the upcoming CBA talks will revolve around just how players and owners will slice up the revenue pie. The current CBA, which had teams capped at $64.3 million this season, expires Sept. 15, and it's widely believed the owners will push for slashing player revenues from 57% to 50%.
If the cap does land at $70 million, the cap floor would be almost $58 million.
On Monday, Millions said his tweet was speculative, based on conversations with people close to the organization.
Feaster has gone on record discussing how the Flames' free-spending has handcuffed the organization at times, prompting many to believe that with six players hitting unrestricted free agency July 1 and four more scheduled for restricted status, the club may indeed choose to leave itself plenty of wiggle room given the CBA uncertainty and the fact it's always useful for any team to have cap space as the season progresses so trades can be made to either bolster an existing lineup or build for the future.