Five NHL restricted free agents who could receive an offer sheet

five nhl restricted free agents who could receive an offer sheet

Seth Jarvis.

Offer sheets are arguably the most underused roster-building tool at the disposal of NHL general managers.

Similar to the NFL, the NHL allows team to present an offer sheet to a restricted free agent whose rights are owned by another club.

If the player signs the offer sheet, the team that owns that their rights can either match the offer or it can decline to match and receive draft-pick compensation for losing the player to the other team.

Of the 10 offer-sheet situations in the salary-cap era, only two — Dustin Penner, who went from the Anaheim Ducks to Edmonton Oilers, and Jasper Kotkaniemi, who went from the Montreal Canadiens to Carolina Hurricanes — were not matched.

With a talented group of budding stars in the 2024 restricted free-agent pool, here are five RFAs who could receive an offer sheet this offseason.

1. Seth Jarvis, C, Carolina Hurricanes

Yes, the Panthers do have a good amount of cap space to work with this offseason — $26.23M, per PuckPedia — but they also have several key free agents they’re going to at least explore bringing back including forwards Jake Guentzel, Martin Necas, Jordan Martinook and Teuvo Teravainen, plus defensemen Brett Pesce, Brady Skjei and Anthony Deangelo.

Jarvis is only 22, he scored 33 goals and 67 points this season and he likely won’t enter his prime for another two years or so. Giving him an offer sheet that would be too expensive for Carolina to afford might be a sneaky easy good way for a team with plenty of cap space to acquire an up-and-coming top-line center.

2. Anton Lundell, C, Carolina Panthers

Lundell is a 22-year-old center with three years of NHL experience already under his belt. He hasn’t broken the 20-goal or 50-point plateaus yet, but he’s still developing and could be an excellent No. 2 center for a lot of playoff teams.

The Panthers have the cap space to re-sign him ($20.02M, according to PuckPedia), but they also have 11 unrestricted free agents to think about as well including Sam Reinhart, Kyle Okposo, Vladimir Tarasenko, Brandon Montour, Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Dmitry Kulikov. Florida’s cap space could disappear quickly if it retains multiple UFAs, which could open the door for a team to offer Lundell a contract that’s just a little too rich for the Panthers’ blood.

3. Cole Perfetti, C, Winnipeg Jets

The Jets are on the lower end of available cap space with around $11.8M per PuckPedia, and if they re-sign at least two of Sean Monahan, Tyler Toffoli, Dylan DeMelo, Collin Miller and Laurent Brossoit, their funds could be close to gone.

Perfetti was scratched in the Jet's first four playoff games against Colorado (and a number of times during the regular season) so with a head-coaching change in Winnipeg, he could decide it’s time for a fresh start somewhere else. The 10th overall pick in 2020, Perfetti still has upside as a scoring top-six forward who could entice a team to throw out an offer sheet knowing Winnipeg likely can’t match it.

4. Philip Broberg, D, Edmonton Oilers

The Oilers are another team limited by cap space with just $10.03M in available funds and 10 pending unrestricted free agents. Logistically, there’s just no way Edmonton can afford to keep the players it wants and match the kind of money Broberg could get on an offer sheet.

Though he’s only played in 81 games the last three seasons, Broberg was the eighth overall pick in 2019 and he’s only 22 years old. He’s too young with too much potential to give up on just yet, and another team could swoop in and pry him loose with the Oilers trying to keep as much of their Stanley Cup Final team intact as they can.

5. Connor McMichael, C, Washington Capitals

Washington has the second-worst cap situation in the NHL with just $1.15M available. And while the team only has two pending UFAs, it also needs to free up some funds to fine-tune the roster.

A first-round pick in 2019, McMichael had his best season as a pro in 2023, notching 18 goals and 33 points in 80 games. He could make a strong addition to another team’s middle six, and with the Capitals strapped for cash, it wouldn’t even take that high of an offer sheet to potentially poach him away from Washington.

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