Washington Capitals return John Carlson at age eight, $ 64M deal


Washington is nationally known for its politics and the division that it creates. The captaincy parade of the capitals, however, focused on the residents and a city that was united by the title run of their team.
USA TODAY sports

The Washington Capitals held onto a key piece from their Stanley Cup run by re-signing potential full-back freelance defender John Carlson for an eight-year $ 64 million deal.

He had expressed an interest in returning to the team after the Stanley Cup victory, but the capitals must find the upper limit. They did so by bringing defender Brooks Orpik and substitute goalkeeper Philipp Grubauer to the Colorado Avalanche just before the draft on Friday.

Getting him back was crucial to the Capitals' goal of defending their Stanley Cup title because it would have been almost impossible to replace him. None of his caliber is one of the potential unlimited free agent defenders and they would have had to part with too many assets to land someone in a trade.

"John has been an exceptional and consistent player for our franchise and has become one of the NHL's best defenders," said Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan. "Defenders like John are a rare asset in our league, and at 28, we feel like he is in bloom."

Carlson, who made $ 4 million last season, has a career high with 15 goals and 53 assists and is an important part of their powerplay. He continued his strong game in the playoffs with 20 points in 24 games.

More: A look at the top possible unrestricted free agents

More: Ilya Kovalchuk returns to NHL with Kings

Carlson's $ 8 million win puts him in second place among the league defenders behind P.K. from Nashville Predators. Subban ($ 9 million). It is related to the Brent Burns of San Jose Sharks in an annual average salary.

He is second in the capitals behind Alex Ovechkins cap hit of $ 9.5 million plus.

Carlson would have been in high demand if he had hit the free agent market, but the Capitals had the advantage of being able to offer him eight years and they had just won a Stanley Cup. He has played his entire career with the capitals.

The capitals still have to hire a coach – Barry Trotz went to the New York Islanders – and negotiated with the unlimited free agents Michal Kempny and Jay Beagle and the limited free agents Tom Wilson and Devante Smith-Pelly.

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