Capped: Prediction model for free agents

Alexander MacLean

2020-02-20

This week's Capped column is going to be a slightly different format. Down below will be a list on all of my model predictions for the projected cap hits of the 2020 free agent crop. In 2017, I started trying to model salaries, to some moderate level of success, but by 2018 it had grown so complicated, that it was more time consuming than it was worthwhile, in addition to being a lot about manual input, meaning my biases were still showing through. In 2019, I started the cap league rankings, and at that point, I knew I needed a more simplistic version of the salary prediction algorithm to be able to have the whole undertaking work. At the same time also determined that it wasn't a productive avenue of work to try and determine how long a contract will be, and there isn't a large benefit to knowing an approximate number of years ahead of time, so I have stopped trying to estimate it.

 

My rankings are for keeper leagues, and thus they take into account projected future cap hits for players with contracts expiring in the next three years. In order to be able to have this work for over 900 players that I am tracking, the manual input had to be completely cut out. As a result, I am still expanding on the new framework, but it has gotten to a point where the numbers seem viable enough to share with you readers.

 

A few weeks ago, I also went over a few contracts that I am curious to see the outcome on, mainly because there seems to be a lot of variance between the high and the low end of what we can expect. As a result of this variance, the projections for these players display some of the flaws in my current projection system, the main one being inability to properly deal with lengthy injury absences. This affects the projections shown for players such as Taylor Hall, Ilya Mikheyev, Erik Haula, Justin Schultz, and a few others. With that, the full disclaimer is that this list probably won't be perfect, and it's meant as a baseline of what someone's numbers show themselves to be worth when removing all of the biases we have towards player evaluation.

 

Also of note, the league minimum salary going into the 2020-2021 season will still be set at $700,000 (This is increasing to $750,000 for the 2021-2022 season). Almost half of the future free agents listed below show a league minimum salary projection, which generally means they have replacement level, or negative value for their team. Signing one of these players for more than a $1,000,000 cap hit would be a perceived overpayment by the team for a player who has many comparables on the market that could and will be signed for less.

 

All current salary info courtesy of capfriendly.

 

If you have questions, comments, or find an error in the sheet, let me know on Twitter @alexdmaclean, and if you're looking for some cap league trade deadline coverage, check out my articles from the last few weeks: Forwards, Defence, Goalies.

 

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Without further ado, the top 300 free agents for the summer of 2020, and their salary projections:

 

Name Age Position Current Cap Hit Projected Cap Hit
Alex Pietrangelo 30 D $6,500,000 $7,109,044
Sam Reinhart 24 F $3,650,000 $6,962,665
Mathew Barzal 22 F $863,333 $6,955,859
Tyson Barrie 28 D $5,500,000 $6,867,432
Tomas Tatar 29 F $5,300,000 $6,798,341
Torey Krug 28 D $5,250,000 $6,726,666
Mike Hoffman 30 F $5,187,500 $6,582,317
Erik Gustafsson 27 D $1,200,000 $6,504,229
Max Domi 24 F $3,150,000 $6,408,598
Anthony DeAngelo 24 D $925,000 $6,374,140
Pierre-Luc Dubois 21 F $894,166 $6,371,971
Evgenii Dadonov 30 F $4,000,000 $6,364,079
Ryan Pulock 25 D $2,000,000 $6,361,336
Ryan Strome 26 F $3,100,000 $6,311,601
Chris Kreider 28 F $4,625,000 $6,071,849
Kevin Labanc 24 F $1,000,000 $5,773,652
Mikhail Sergachev 21 D $894,166 $5,766,872
Anthony Cirelli 22 F $728,333 $5,752,071
Tyler Bertuzzi 24 F $1,400,000 $5,734,488
Andre Burakovsky 25 F $3,250,000 $5,673,906
Dylan Strome 22 F $863,333 $5,649,976
Tyler Toffoli 27 F $4,600,000 $5,397,313
Chris Tierney 25 F $2,937,500 $5,382,450
Mikael Granlund 27 F $5,750,000 $5,212,310
Connor Brown 26 F $2,100,000 $5,185,071
Jared McCann 23 F $1,250,000 $5,146,533
Anthony Mantha 25 F $3,300,000 $5,146,377
Brandon Montour 25 D $3,387,500 $5,120,874
Anthony Duclair 24 F $1,650,000 $5,120,129
Kevin Shattenkirk 31 D $1,750,000 $5,093,787
Jake DeBrusk 23 F $863,333 $5,080,681
Andreas Athanasiou 25 F $3,000,000 $5,053,415
Taylor Hall 28 F $6,000,000 $5,000,693
Vince Dunn 23 D $722,500 $4,967,048
Dominik Kahun 24 F $925,000 $4,924,540
Jake Muzzin 30 D $4,000,000 $4,862,690
Jack Roslovic 23 F $894,166 $4,540,138
T.J. Brodie 29 D $4,650,400 $4,533,559
Jake Virtanen 23 F $1,250,000 $4,493,052
Craig Smith 30 F $4,250,000 $4,368,384
Vladislav Namestnikov 27 F $4,000,000 $4,362,930
Jordan Greenway 23 F $916,666 $4,285,550
Warren Foegele 23 F $746,667 $4,270,989
Jimmy Vesey 26 F $2,275,000 $4,269,955
Lucas Wallmark 24 F $675,000 $4,027,755
Carl Soderberg 34 F $4,750,000 $4,020,916
Vinnie Hinostroza 25 F $1,500,000 $4,003,800
Nick Cousins 26 F $1,000,000 $3,972,685
Oskar Lindblom 23 F $925,000 $3,965,740
Roope Hintz 23 F $811,667 $3,953,477
Sami Vatanen 28 D $4,875,000 $3,919,826
Dominik Simon 25 F $750,000 $3,907,516
Alex Galchenyuk 26 F $4,900,000 $3,839,020
Jean-Gabriel Pageau 27 F $3,100,000 $3,797,766
Devon Toews 25 D $700,000 $3,754,855
Conor Sheary 27 F $3,000,000 $3,743,701
Mattias Janmark 27 F $2,300,000 $3,741,317
Matt Grzelcyk 26 D $1,400,000 $3,739,953
Radek Faksa 26 F $2,200,000 $3,670,843
Wayne Simmonds 31 F $5,000,000 $3,541,376
Adam Gaudette 23 F $916,666 $3,479,072
Josh Leivo 26 F $1,500,000 $3,463,728
Derick Brassard 32 F $1,200,000 $3,436,021
Jesper Bratt 21 F $749,167 $3,381,265
Rocco Grimaldi 27 F $1,000,000 $3,340,984
Nikita Zadorov 24 D $3,200,000 $3,306,652
Radko Gudas 29 D $3,350,000 $3,287,155
Tyler Ennis 30 F $800,000 $3,256,461
Joel Edmundson 26 D $3,100,000 $3,233,281
Tyson Jost 21 F $885,833 $3,210,624
Jesper Fast 28 F $1,850,000 $3,157,817
Luke Kunin 22 F $925,000 $3,145,193
Valeri Nichushkin 24 F $850,000 $3,137,023
Cody Ceci 26 D $4,500,000 $3,135,868
Brenden Dillon 29 D $3,270,000 $3,133,261
Travis Dermott 23 D $863,333 $3,095,605
Troy Stecher 25 D $2,325,000 $3,069,972
MacKenzie Weegar 26 D $1,600,000 $3,049,508
Andrew Mangiapane 24 F $715,000 $3,020,469
Victor Mete 21 D $748,333 $2,994,424
Mark Jankowski 25 F $1,675,000 $2,971,906
Casey Mittelstadt 21 F $925,000 $2,968,892
Mark Pysyk 28 D $2,733,333 $2,958,862
Joe Thornton 40 F $2,000,000 $2,948,754
Dylan DeMelo 26 D $900,000 $2,926,489
Josh Anderson 25 F $1,850,000 $2,862,807
Chris Tanev 30 D $4,450,000 $2,831,844
Cody Eakin 28 F $3,850,000 $2,812,535
Madison Bowey 24 D $1,000,000 $2,688,974
Kyle Clifford 29 F $1,600,000 $2,678,433
Devin Shore 25 F $2,300,000 $2,675,410
Travis Hamonic 29 D $3,857,143 $2,640,641
Robby Fabbri 24 F $900,000 $2,594,333
Patrick Marleau 40 F $700,000 $2,551,765
Riley Sheahan 28 F $900,000 $2,551,349
Christian Fischer 22 F $821,666 $2,541,130
Mathieu Joseph 23 F $728,333 $2,494,335
Victor Olofsson 24 F $767,500 $2,446,423
Brendan Lemieux 23 F $925,000 $2,417,067
Erik Cernak 21 D $697,500 $2,408,451
Justin Braun 33 D $3,800,000 $2,348,512
Zemgus Girgensons 26 F $1,600,000 $2,340,919
Brendan Leipsic 25 F $700,000 $2,332,540
Nolan Patrick 21 F $925,000 $2,327,510
Chandler Stephenson 25 F $1,050,000 $2,315,817
Mark Borowiecki 30 D $1,200,000 $2,253,107
Johan Larsson 27 F $1,550,000 $2,246,231
Denis Malgin 23 F $750,000 $2,193,159
Drake Caggiula 25 F $1,500,000 $2,170,854
Josh Archibald 27 F $1,000,000 $2,122,183
Ilya Kovalchuk 36 F $700,000 $2,099,513
Derek Grant 29 F $700,000 $2,092,128
Brendan Perlini 23 F $874,125 $2,082,550
Jason Spezza 36 F $700,000 $2,079,298
Michael Frolik 32 F $4,300,000 $2,077,808
Ryan Graves 24 D $735,000 $2,062,082
Oliver Kylington 22 D $730,833 $1,997,897
Marco Scandella 29 D $4,000,000 $1,933,804
Derek Forbort 27 D $2,525,000 $1,933,584
Nikolay Goldobin 24 F $900,000 $1,925,719
Ethan Bear 22 D $720,000 $1,915,561
Tyler Motte 24 F $975,000 $1,863,654
Andy Greene 37 D $5,000,000 $1,825,816
Mikkel Boedker 30 F $4,000,000 $1,772,807
Travis Boyd 26 F $800,000 $1,763,947
Troy Terry 22 F $925,000 $1,756,816
Melker Karlsson 29 F $2,000,000 $1,754,797
Markus Granlund 26 F $1,300,000 $1,709,596
Daniel Sprong 22 F $750,000 $1,688,443
Denis Gurianov 22 F $894,166 $1,682,964
Dominik Kubalík 24 F $925,000 $1,673,624
Philippe Myers 23 D $678,889 $1,672,149
Nick Holden 32 D $2,200,000 $1,632,071
Mike Green 34 D $5,375,000 $1,616,954
Justin Schultz 29 D $5,500,000 $1,597,474
Tage Thompson 22 F $925,000 $1,588,377
Henrik Borgstrom 22 F $925,000 $1,579,074
Pat Maroon 31 F $900,000 $1,527,216
Derrick Pouliot 26 D $700,000 $1,488,215
Michael Del Zotto 29 D $750,000 $1,475,067
Oscar Fantenberg 28 D $850,000 $1,464,563
Robert Hagg 25 D $1,150,000 $1,451,205
Nathan Beaulieu 27 D $1,000,000 $1,449,538
Erik Haula 28 F $2,750,000 $1,442,057
Jacob Larsson 22 D $894,166 $1,429,665
Sean Walker 25 D $745,000 $1,413,296
Matthew Nieto 27 F $1,975,000 $1,412,020
Ron Hainsey 38 D $3,500,000 $1,315,761
Austin Czarnik 27 F $1,250,000 $1,288,837
Sami Niku 23 D $775,000 $1,283,201
Anders Bjork 23 F $925,000 $1,273,643
Mason Appleton 24 F $741,667 $1,263,807
Justin Williams 38 F $700,000 $1,221,605
Matthew Benning 25 D $1,900,000 $1,215,634
Colin Wilson 30 F $2,600,000 $1,207,857
Mikko Koivu 36 F $5,500,000 $1,086,132
Pontus Aberg 26 F $700,000 $1,053,931
Sammy Blais 23 F $850,000 $1,032,448
John Hayden 25 F $750,000 $1,029,587
Jayce Hawryluk 24 F $874,125 $945,391
Haydn Fleury 23 D $850,000 $940,903
Joakim Nordstrom 27 F $1,000,000 $930,912
Mirco Mueller 24 D $1,400,000 $902,117
Zdeno Chara 42 D $2,000,000 $821,429
Lawrence Pilut 24 D $925,000 $821,408
Ryan Reaves 33 F $2,775,000 $741,059
Gustav Forsling 23 D $874,125 $700,000
Zach Bogosian 29 D $5,142,857 $700,000
Dmitry Kulikov 29 D $4,333,333 $700,000
Jonathan Ericsson 35 D $4,250,000 $700,000
Vladimir Sobotka 32 F $3,500,000 $700,000
Trevor Daley 36 D $3,166,666 $700,000
Sam Gagner 30 F $3,150,000 $700,000
Matt Martin 30 F $2,500,000 $700,000
Dale Weise 31 F $2,350,000 $700,000
Trevor van Riemsdyk 28 D $2,300,000 $700,000
Trevor Lewis 33 F $2,000,000 $700,000
Tim Schaller 29 F $1,900,000 $700,000
Roman Polak 33 D $1,750,000 $700,000
Corey Perry 34 F $1,500,000 $700,000
Andrej Sekera 33 D $1,500,000 $700,000
Mark Barberio 29 D $1,450,000 $700,000
Kevin Connauton 29 D $1,375,000 $700,000
Jonathon Merrill 28 F $1,375,000 $700,000
Matthew Peca 26 F $1,300,000 $700,000
Christian Djoos 25 D $1,250,000 $700,000
Brad Richardson 35 F $1,250,000 $700,000
Adam Erne 24 F $1,050,000 $700,000
Scott Wilson 27 F $1,050,000 $700,000
Tyler Pitlick 28 F $1,000,000 $700,000
Brett Ritchie 26 F $1,000,000 $700,000
Joel Persson 25 D $1,000,000 $700,000
Nate Thompson 35 F $1,000,000 $700,000
Tomas Nosek 27 F $1,000,000 $700,000
Tim Heed 29 D $960,000 $700,000
Brian Boyle 35 F $940,000 $700,000
Carl Grundstrom 22 F $925,000 $700,000
Taro Hirose 23 F $925,000 $700,000
Ilya Mikheyev 25 F $925,000 $700,000
Nikolai Prokhorkin 26 F $925,000 $700,000
Vladislav Gavrikov 24 D $925,000 $700,000
Slater Koekkoek 26 D $925,000 $700,000
Max Veronneau 24 F $925,000 $700,000
Oliwer Kaski 24 D $925,000 $700,000
Gaetan Haas 28 F $925,000 $700,000
Anton Wedin 26 F $925,000 $700,000
Ryan Kuffner 23 F $925,000 $700,000
Kiefer Sherwood 24 F $925,000 $700,000
Jonathan Dahlen 22 F $925,000 $700,000
Jacob De La Rose 24 F $900,000 $700,000
Sonny Milano 23 F $874,125 $700,000
Joshua Ho-Sang 24 F $874,125 $700,000
Nico Sturm 24 F $874,125 $700,000
Sheldon Rempal 24 F $874,125 $700,000
Kevin Stenlund 23 F $864,166 $700,000
Evgeny Svechnikov 23 F $863,333 $700,000
Nick Merkley 22 F $863,333 $700,000
Zach Senyshyn 22 F $863,333 $700,000
Juuso Riikola 26 D $850,000 $700,000
Kevin Roy 26 F $850,000 $700,000
Tom Kuhnhackl 28 F $850,000 $700,000
Jimmy Schuldt 24 D $850,000 $700,000
Korbinian Holzer 32 D $850,000 $700,000
Jani Hakanpaa 27 D $850,000 $700,000
Alex Biega 31 D $825,000 $700,000
Paul Ladue 27 D $825,000 $700,000
Charles Hudon 18 D $800,000 $700,000
Christian Folin 29 D $800,000 $700,000
Jordan Szwarz 28 F $800,000 $700,000
Dalton Prout 29 D $800,000 $700,000
Jakob Lilja 26 F $792,500 $700,000
Sebastian Aho (d) 24 F $770,000 $700,000
Sam Lafferty 24 F $767,500 $700,000
Rudolfs Balcers 22 F $759,167 $700,000
Austin Wagner 22 F $759,167 $700,000
Christoffer Ehn 23 F $759,167 $700,000
Jayden Halbgewachs 22 F $759,166 $700,000
Brett Seney 23 F $757,500 $700,000
Christian Jaros 23 D $755,000 $700,000
Chris Stewart 32 F $753,757 $700,000
Aleksi Saarela 23 F $753,333 $700,000
Vladislav Kamenev 23 F $750,000 $700,000
Karson Kuhlman 24 F $750,000 $700,000
Mackenzie MacEachern 25 F $750,000 $700,000
Markus Hannikainen 26 F $750,000 $700,000
Carson Soucy 25 D $750,000 $700,000
Miikka Salomaki 26 F $750,000 $700,000
Luca Sbisa 30 D $750,000 $700,000
Nick Shore 27 F $750,000 $700,000
Tomas Jurco 27 F $750,000 $700,000
Troy Brouwer 34 F $750,000 $700,000
Kyle Capobianco 22 F $745,000 $700,000
Sheldon Dries 25 F $735,000 $700,000
Alan Quine 26 F $735,000 $700,000
Jacob Middleton 24 D $735,000 $700,000
A.J. Greer 23 F $735,000 $700,000
Filip Chlapik 22 F $728,333 $700,000
William Carrier 25 F $725,000 $700,000
Brian Gibbons 31 F $725,000 $700,000
Joakim Ryan 26 D $725,000 $700,000
Connor Clifton 24 D $725,000 $700,000
Garrett Wilson 28 F $725,000 $700,000
Joel L’Esperance 24 F $722,500 $700,000
Greg McKegg 27 F $715,000 $700,000
Dryden Hunt 24 F $715,000 $700,000
Jonas Siegenthaler 22 F $714,166 $700,000
Peter Cehlarik 24 F $700,000 $700,000
Stefan Noesen 27 F $700,000 $700,000
Deryk Engelland 37 D $700,000 $700,000
Louie Belpedio 23 D $700,000 $700,000
Kevin Rooney 26 F $700,000 $700,000
Boo Nieves 26 F $700,000 $700,000
Daniel Carr 28 F $700,000 $700,000
Anthony Bitetto 29 D $700,000 $700,000
Curtis Lazar 25 F $700,000 $700,000
Patrick Russell 27 F $700,000 $700,000
Carter Verhaeghe 24 F $700,000 $700,000
Gabriel Bourque 29 F $700,000 $700,000
Joseph Blandisi 25 F $700,000 $700,000
Lukas Radil 29 F $700,000 $700,000
Mark Letestu 35 F $700,000 $700,000
Scott Sabourin 27 F $700,000 $700,000
Micheal Haley 33 F $700,000 $700,000
Ian McCoshen 24 D $700,000 $700,000
Sam Carrick 28 F $700,000 $700,000
Jordan Schmaltz 26 D $700,000 $700,000
Jonny Brodzinski 26 F $700,000 $700,000
Clark Bishop 23 F $700,000 $700,000
Trevor Carrick 25 D $700,000 $700,000
Brendan Guhle 22 D $697,500 $700,000
Dmytro Timashov 23 F $694,444 $700,000
J.T. Brown 29 F $687,500 $700,000
Matt Luff 22 F $677,777 $700,000
Valentin Zykov 24 F $675,000 $700,000
Frederik Gauthier 24 F $675,000 $700,000
Yannick Weber 31 D $675,000 $700,000
Josh Brown 26 D $675,000 $700,000
Tyler Lewington 25 D $675,000 $700,000
Colby Cave 25 F $675,000 $700,000
Frederick Gaudreau 26 F $666,666 $700,000

UPCOMING GAMES

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STARTING GOALIES

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HOT PLAYERS

  Players Team GP G A P
EVGENI MALKIN PIT 5 4 7 11
ADAM FOX NYR 4 1 6 7
JAKUB VORACEK PHI 6 0 10 10
NATHAN MACKINNON COL 5 2 6 8
MIKA ZIBANEJAD NYR 29 25 19 44
NIKITA KUCHEROV T.B 24 16 20 36
KEVIN FIALA MIN 11 9 7 16
EVANDER KANE S.J 7 5 5 10
KYLE CONNOR WPG 7 8 2 10
RYAN NUGENT-HOPKINS EDM 17 8 16 24

LINE COMBOS

  Frequency CHI Players
22.3% KIRBY DACH ALEX DEBRINCAT PATRICK KANE
20.6% DOMINIK KUBALIK BRANDON SAAD JONATHAN TOEWS
17.7% RYAN CARPENTER MATTHEW HIGHMORE DAVID KAMPF

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