The March 4th trade deadline looms large for teams in the playoff hunt in the NHL. The question for the fan of any team is "Will we be buyers or sellers?". For teams such as the Preds that are on the playoff bubble, that question will be decided in the next few weeks. It is informative to see who on the Preds roster is going to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. UFA's are free to sign with any team with no compensation to the team that lost the player in question. For a GM, the questions are many, including how does a particular player fit in with the future plans of the team; salary considerations; positional depth; and what does the market look like for potential replacements.
The following players are moving to UFA status at the end end of the season (along with their current salary) :
Steve Sullivan $3,200,000
Greg DeVries 2,750,000
Radek Bonk 1,600,000
Vernon Fiddler 900,000
Greg Zanon 750,000
Ville Koistinen 700,000
With the current roster, the Preds have $11,356,000 in cap space. Will we buyers or sellers? GM David Poile faces some critical personnel decisions in the coming weeks. The Preds in times past have benefited from wading into the free agent pool, notably Paul Kariya and Jason Arnott. Do we go after another free agent? Do we trade one of the players mentioned above? The next few weeks on and off the ice will interesting for Preds fans.