Neither the Washington Wizards nor the Washington Capitals were expected to be very active during their respective free agency periods this summer. Slightly more than 24 hours into NHL free agency, all the Capitals have done is sign two AHL defensemen and bottom-six forward Joey Crabb. The Wizards, for their part, essentially removed themselves from this summer's NBA free agency frenzy by making a pre-draft trade for Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza.
This relative inactivity has left some fans (particularly, it must be said, some Capitals fans) very antsy. So owner Ted Leonsis responded in his usual way: on his blog.
In post titled "The Thing About Cap Space" that went up Monday afternoon, Leonsis made himself clear:
Right now, I see the draft and trades as the best way to use cap space to rebuild or replenish with certainty. I am hopeful we can use free agency as well - time will tell. But it may be that having cap space is a bit over-valued in free agency. In fact, it may hurt in that some teams may have to use their cap space to chase deals to the detriment of their long term plans. We shall see. Stay tuned.
Stay tuned, indeed.
UPDATE: Ted himself has emailed us to note that Jagr was acquired via a trade, not through free agency. So noted. We've changed the last part of this post to reflect that.