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Thrashers Payroll Update

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I've seen some people talk about the Thrashers payroll being in the high $20s or low $30s, but that's not accurate. If you actually look at a 20 man NHL roster and include the qualifying offers for Lehtnonen and Sterling and Zhitnik's buyout the team sits at $35 million right now.

2008 Cap Cost/Player
$6.4 Kovalchuk
$3.7 Kozlov
$2.4 T. White
$1.2 Armstrong
$0.9 Little
$0.8 Christensen
$0.8 Perrin
$0.6 Sterling (RFA Qualifying Offer)
$0.5 Thorburn
$0.8 Slater
$0.5 Larsen
$0.5 C. Stuart
$4.5 Hainsey
$2.7 Havelid
$1.4 Exelby
$1.2 Klee
$0.9 Enstrom
$0.9 Valabik
$2.2 Lehtonen (Qualifying offer)
$1.2 Hedberg
$1.2 Buyout (Zhitnik)

Now Lethonen will probably end up re-signing for $3-4 million, let's assume $4 million, now the Thrashers sit at $37 million. If the team decides to carry 3 bench players instead of the NHL minimum 20, so if you need to toss in roughly another $2 million for three more roster players. Now you have a Thrashers roster sitting at $39--which is still $2 under the salary floor.

So realistically the Thrashers not nearly as far from the salary floor as many fans think. Of course even if the Thrashers add a $3 million player the team is nowhere close to being competitive as presently constituted. Over on HFboards there is a thread about the worst roster fo 2008. Nearly every poster mentions the Thrashers in their top three.