The Capitals are interested in re-signing winger T.J. Oshie, but no deal is imminent, General Manager Brian MacLellan said Tuesday.
MacLellan’s comments contradicted a report over the weekend that suggested a deal between Oshie and the Caps was “all but done.”
“I like Oshie,” MacLellan told reporters in his first public comments since the Caps were ousted from the playoffs. “Of the UFAs, he’s a good fit for us. Again, it’s going to depend on what the salary cap number is and what he’s looking for as his salary.”
MacLellan also indicated that discussions between the team and Oshie’s representative have not advanced beyond the preliminary stages, calling the talks “general” in nature.
“Just back and forth,” MacLellan said. “I think he likes the situation [in Washington]. We like him. [But] nothing specific as far as term or money.”
Standing between the Caps and a deal with Oshie is the team’s proximity to salary cap ceiling and the club's need to re-sign its six restricted free agents—Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov, Nate Schmidt, Andre Burakovsky, Philipp Grubauer and Brett Connolly. MacLellan said the RFA’s will be his priority this summer as he decides where to allocate salary cap dollars.
“We’re going to have to wait and see what the salary cap comes in at, if the [salary cap] escalator [clause in the collective bargaining agreement] is chosen [by the players’ association] or not,” MacLellan said. “Is it around $73-74 [million] or is at $77 [million]? That will impact what we have left to sign the UFAs.”
Oshie, 30, finished last season with a career-high 33 goals, which was tied with Alex Ovechkin for the team lead.
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