The Washington Capitals re-signed defenseman Madison Bowey to a two-year contract worth $2 million ($1 million AAV), the team announced early Thursday evening. The defenseman became a restricted free agent on July 1.
Bowey, 23, tallied 12 assists and a -3 rating in 51 games during 2017-18, his first season in the NHL and tallied two goals and eight points in nine games with the Hershey Bears. He averaged 13:43 worth of ice time with the Capitals this season but was sent down to the American Hockey League after the Capitals acquired defenseman Jakub Jerabek from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a 2018 fifth-round draft pick on February 21 and didn’t play another game after that. Bowey also recorded 11 takeaways and 38 giveaways in his freshman campaign.
Forward Tom Wilson, who tallied 14 goals, 35 points, and a +10 rating in 78 regular season games and five goals and 15 points in 21 postseason games, is now the Capitals’ only restricted free agent.
The 2013 53rd overall pick has tallied 10 goals, 51 points, and a +27 rating in 135 career games with the Bears, spanning over three seasons. His best season came in 2015-16 when he recorded four goals, 25 points, and a +22 rating in 70 games as a rookie.
In his last two seasons with the Kelowna Rockets in the WHL, he tallied sixty points and at least 17 goals in each season. He was also a +38 or higher in his last three seasons in Kelowna.
Bowey will become a restricted free agent again after 2019-20.
The Capitals now have $7,265,705 remaining in cap room to re-sign Wilson, 24, and spend the rest of it in free agency if they wish. They could bring back defenseman Brooks Orpik, who was traded to the Colorado Avalanche along with Philipp Grubauer in exchange for a second-round pick in this summer’s draft. The Avalanche bought out the final year of Orpik’s five-year contract that he signed in 2014 with the Capitals. The team could also opt to move on from Orpik, 37, and sign a replacement to anchor the third pair alongside sophomore defenseman Christian Djoos.
From Capitals’ Release:
Bowey, 23, made his NHL debut on Oct. 14, 2017, against the Philadelphia Flyers and recorded his first point on Oct. 26, against the Vancouver Canucks. In 51 games during the 2017-18 season, Bowey recorded 12 assists, tied for ninth among rookie defensemen.
The 6’2″, 198-pound defenseman recorded eight points (2g, 6a) in nine games with the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League. Bowey recorded three multi-point games, including a two-goal game in Hershey’s 2-1 win against the Hartford Wolfpack on March 24. In 113 career AHL games with Hershey, Bowey recorded 51 points (9g, 42a).
The Winnipeg, Manitoba, native was drafted by the Capitals with the 53rd overall pick in the second round of the 2013 NHL Draft. As a junior player with the Kelowna Rockets, a team he captained for two seasons, Bowey recorded 172 points (58g, 114a) in 259 games. In 2015, Bowey won the World Junior Championship with Team Canada and the Ed Chynoweth Cup as a WHL champion and was named as a First Team All-Star in the WHL.
By Harrison Brown