Projecting which restricted free agents will return to the Capitals in 2024-25

Which Washington Capitals RFAs will be back next season?
Beck Malenstyn, Washington Capitals
Beck Malenstyn, Washington Capitals / Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

The Washington Capitals will potentially have more money to spend in the upcoming offseason once the Stanley Cup is decided between the Edmonton Oilers and Florida Panthers. So which restricted free agents will come back and which ones won't.

As we are writing this the Capitals right now, per CapFriendly, have a projected cap space of $6,685,000. The preseason LTIR candidate estimates are a $9.2 million cap hit and a $15.885 million one.

Between the RFAs the Caps may have to make a decision between Connor McMichael and Beck Malenstyn. But knowing what the offseason habits usually are, they may just try to extend both of them to keep the youth movement in house.

Then there's the defense with Alexander Alexeyev. Do the Caps keep the 24 year old or do they sign a veteran blue liner?

Ethen Frank, Alex Limoges, and Riley Sutter are also RFAs so questions abound in Hershey as well on the forward front. Then there's Hardy Haman Aktell who I don't see going anywhere. Mitchell Gibson is waivers exempt at goalie.

Burning questions at RFA

Who do the Capitals extend at forward?

Connor McMichael and Beck Malenstyn coming back would easily be a slam dunk move by Brian MacLellan. If it came down to one or the other it's honeslty a tough choice. Some will point to McMichael's game coming up in spurts. Others will mention Malenstyn's flaire for the dramatic.

Does it make sense to re up on Alexeyev?

Yes and no at the same time. Yes for the youth movement and no because trying the same thing at defense just simply hasn't worked in today's NHL. And whether it was Darcy Kuemper or Charlie Lindgren, both goalies had their work cut out for them.

Do they trade?

Ahhhh that one. They would need a package deal as nobody initally wanted to take on some of the contracts of the trade deadline. Teams have gotten a lot more stingy when it comes to the trade market.