Alex Ovechkin’s contract has been a discussion point for the Capitals and their fans for the last two seasons, but now, there might be an official end in sight.
After the NHL Draft concluded on Saturday afternoon, Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan spoke to the media about the offseason in Washington, and gave an update on Ovechkin’s contract negotiations.
“I think we are making progress,” MacLellan said. “Our goal is to finish it up here by free agency."
Free agency begins on Wednesday at noon, which would indicate that the Capitals are just a few days away from inking that deal. MacLellan said he doesn’t have any concerns that the deal will be done by the time free agency opens.
“I think both parties are, you know, want the same goal and I think we will get it done by then,” he said. “I anticipate us getting it done by then.”
Ovechkin’s eventual contract is set to put the Capitals over the salary cap, unless at least one salary-clearing trade happens beforehand. Meaning, MacLellan and the Capitals could be in store for a busy few days before Wednesday.
MacLellan didn’t indicate whether or not the Capitals will go over the salary cap (which they are allowed to do by 10 percent in the offseason), meaning there may or may not be trades that come in the ensuing days. There will be trades that happen at some point this offseason, though.
“We have a couple days left, we got free agency, we will see what happens in the trade market, you know try to balance all those things out to get to the spot we need to be,” MacLellan said.
Either way, it appears the only safe bet to make for the Capitals right now is that an Ovechkin contract will be complete by midweek next week.