The NHL season is going to be over soon, and free agency is right around the corner. One player hoping to cash in is Thomas Vanek, but did he blow his chance? Vanek did not turn many heads during his 2013-2014 season.
It was known by almost every team, and now it official. Vanek will test the free agency market on July 1st. Vanek wanted out of Buffalo, and got his wish. But, he landed on a deserted Island. He wouldn’t sign with the Islanders, and was moved to Montreal. Once in Montreal it seemed Vanek fit right in that is until the NHL Playoffs started.
There is something people need to know about Vanek; he is not going to skate just to skate, and he is not going to look like he is working. But, Vanek is doing what Vanek does. He is the kind of player that will not do anything more than what he feels needs to be done on a given night. While he was on the Buffalo Sabres he was often called “Lazy” by Sabres fans, and at time he was, but he was one of the most talented Sabres year in and year out. He just never looked like he was trying.
Vanek has more talent than most players could even dream of, the problem is he is streaky, and you never know when he is going to show you his skill. This season Vanek had 68 points in the regular season and 10 points in the playoffs. Most teams would love to have a player put up 68 points, but if you are going to spend around $8 million a year on a player you need to know game in and game out he is going to be there, and he better show up in the playoffs.
Sorry everyone, that is not Vanek. He has been in the league for nine years, and has five playoff appearances. Over the 53 playoff games Vanek has put up only 30 points.
Thomas Vanek Playoff History
- 2005-2006: GP 10, 2 Points
- 2006-2007: GP 16, 10 Points
- 2009-2010: GP 3, 3 Points
- 2010-2011: GP 7, 5 Points
- 2013-2014: GP 17, 10 Points
When free agency starts where could Vanek go? There have been rumors about Vanek and the Minnesota Wild for almost a year now. That would be a home-coming for Vanek, he played college hockey in Minnesota. But, as much as he may want to go home; I’m not sure the Wild have the cap room it is going to take to sign Vanek According to Cap Geek the Wild have an estimated $22,724,744 in cap room. The Wild have 13 RFA/UFA’s on the roster. Sorry Thomas, I’m not sure you will fit in.
NHL Teams That May Look At Vanek
- Florida Panthers: Cap Space $30,234,625
- Nashville Predators: Cap Space $22,107,024
- Washington Capitals: Cap Space $14,926,538
- Los Angeles Kings: Cap Space $13,133,106
- Anaheim Ducks: Cap Space $22,451,667
- Columbus Blue Jackets: Cap Space $22,749,524
Thomas Vanek is going to try to find a place to finish out his career, and after suffering in Buffalo for years; he is most likely going to want to play for a contender. But, did this past year hurt his chances?