The NHL salary cap appears to be going up a little for the 2017-18 season, but the Blackhawks will still have financial concerns.
Chris Johnston of Sportsnet.ca was one of several to report that the 2017-18 cap will be $75 million. It was $73 million last season.
As for the Blackhawks, even with the new cap at $75 million they’re still more than $2.5 million in the red thanks in part to performance bonuses. If the possibility of Marcus Kruger going to the Vegas Golden Knights comes to fruition, the Blackhawks would shed his $3.08 million cap hit. That wouldn’t leave much wiggle room for a team that’s still needing, among other things, a backup goaltender.
The Blackhawks have a few things to figure out over the next few weeks. On Sunday we found out who they’re going to protect and who they’ll expose; Kruger and Trevor van Riemsdyk were in the latter group, as expected. On Friday the Blackhawks will be hosting the NHL Draft, where they’ll make some decisions on their future. But it’s another offseason in which the Blackhawks’ have a money problem, and the small cap increase doesn’t alleviate that.