One of the biggest fantasy-related issues for the 2020-21 season is what is going to happen to the NHL's cap.
Many fantasy salary cap leagues are tied to the NHL cap. When the NHL cap moves up, so does the fantasy league's cap. Now there's been some talk of next year's NHL cap staying where it is, with some speculation it may actually go down. All of a sudden, a fantasy general manager may have to trade one of his elite superstars to get under his league's cap.
However, the fun part of cap leagues is finding those players who are extremely cost-efficient. After all, why pay $9 million for a player when you can get the same production for a fraction of the cost. Next year, it will be even more important to find those players.
This past season saw plenty of great cap hits that helped many fantasy general managers win their championships, with 10 of the best recorded below. For this list, we're not including players who are still on entry-level deals. We're also only looking at this season's cap hit to not exclude any free agents.
For those in cap leagues (and even for those who aren't), don't forget to follow Alex MacLean's Capped column that comes out every Thursday.
10. Bryan Rust
The top surprise of the 2019-20 season, Rust's $3.5 million annual cap hit for the next two years is a huge bargain. Pittsburgh has an excellent track record of finding supporting players to play on the top two lines, but Rust may wind up as the best of the bunch. He started this season off strong, and thanks to injuries to top players, was able to move up to a top-six role. He finished with 56 points in 55 games playing just under 20 minutes a game. With the lack of depth in Pittsburgh, he should have no trouble keeping that top-six role next season.
9. Kevin Fiala
In one of my cap leagues last year, I was offered Fiala in trade discussions, but it was a non-starter for me. I was worried about his output when he was dealt to Minnesota, where much-older veterans get much more playing time than younger players. At 23 years old, I figured Fiala would be relegated down the lineup. However, while his ice time (both even strength and power play) didn't change much, Fiala was very productive, finishing with almost a 70-point pace. He also notched 18 power-play points despite spending most of the season on the second unit. He still has one more year at a $3-million cap hit.
8. Ryan Strome
Strome's next contract will be very telling for his future as a fantasy asset. He made $3.2 million this s