Feb 26, 2015; Winnipeg, Manitoba, CAN; Winnipeg Jets forward Jiri Tlusty (91) skates on the ice prior to the game against the St. Louis Blues at MTS Centre. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports
Left Wing: Jiri Tlusty (2014-2015 cap hit: $2.95m)
Tlusty was drafted 3 picks after Frolik by the Toronto Maple Leafs at 13th overall, but he hasn’t nearly lived up to the high expectations associated with the selection. His best season was 2012-2013, when he racked up 38 points in 48 games with the Carolina Hurricanes, but he hasn’t been able to repeat the limited success.
While only 27, he might take a pay cut to play for New York in order to show the NHL that he’s got what it takes to be a solid winger. He’d join Jets teammate Frolik on their new team and could possibly form a speedy but strong line with Kevin Hayes in the middle and Carl Hagelin on the right. With Hayes growing into a star player in front of everyone’s eyes, this could be Tlusty’s chance to take advantage and appear on the score sheet more often, boosting his confidence and possibly showing flashes of brilliance that made the Leafs draft him so high.