Capitals Do Not Tender Qualifying Offer To Ilya Samsonov

The Washington Capitals announced prior to Monday’s 5 PM ET deadline that they have extended qualifying offers to defenseman Tobias Geisser and forward Damien Riat. However, they did not tender and offer to goaltender Ilya Samsonov, who will become an unrestricted free agent on Wednesday.

The Capitals could sign Samsonov as a free agent for less than they paid him last season, if they wish to retain him, but they will now have to compete with the open market to do so.

Samsonov finished the 2021-22 regular season 23-12-5 with an .896 save percentage, a 3.02 goals-against average, and three shutouts, despite an 11-1-1 start where he posted a .916 save percentage, a 2.42 goals-against average, and three shutouts through December 9.

At five-on-five last season, Samsonov finished with a .904 save percentage (including .785 at high danger), 2.77 goals-against average, and a -11.59 goals-saved above average (-9.41 at high danger). He also earned an .855 save percentage and 0.70 goals-saved above average on the penalty kill.

Swiss Watch

Tobias Geisser, 23, reportedly signed a three-year contract with EV Zug of the Swiss League on June 25. Geisser was drafted by the Capitals in the fourth round of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. He appeared in a total of 71 games for the Bears during the 2021-22 season, in which he recorded 14 points (three goals). Geisser was a restricted free agent this summer with the Capitals.

Damien Riat, 25, decided to play for Lausanne HC in the Swiss League last season, and will return to Lausanne this fall for the 2022-23 season.

What Are Qualifying Offers?

A Qualifying Offer is an official Standard Player Contract (SPC) offer which is for one year in length, which can be subject to salary arbitration should the player be eligible. Team’s have until the later of June 25th or the first Monday after the NHL Entry Draft to submit Qualifying Offers. [Note: The 2022 NHL Entry Draft is scheduled for July 7, so the following Monday makes the deadline July 11.]

Submitting a Qualifying Offer gives the club the right of first refusal to match any “offer sheet” submitted by another team or receive draft pick compensation. If the player rejects the qualifying offer, they remain an RFA and their rights are retained by the team.

The qualifying offer is calculated from the players base salary (NHL salary minus signing bonus), and at minimum must meet the season’s minimum salary requirements. The requirements for 2022 according to CapFriendly:

    • 110% of the base salary if the base salary is less than or equal to $660,000
    • 105% of the base salary if the base salary is greater than $660,000 or less than $1,000,000. However, this qualifying offer cannot exceed $1,000,000.
    • 100% of the base salary if the base salary is equal to or greater than $1,000,000.
    • CBA Reference 10.2 (a) (ii).

Unrestricted Free Agents

Right-wing Marcus Johansson, left-wing Johan Larsson, defenseman Justin Schultz, defenseman Michal Kempny, and defenseman Matt Irwin will all join  Samsonov and  become unrestricted free agents at 12 noon ET on Wednesday. The Capitals currently have $8,978,334 available in cap space.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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21 Responses to Capitals Do Not Tender Qualifying Offer To Ilya Samsonov

  1. Scottlew73 says:

    Ok let me see if I understand YOUR brilliant GM,gave a offer to a dman that Signed with EV ZUG 2 weeks ago!! If you need more clues as to how stupid this man is this is your biggest proof!! Like I said before what kind of photos does he have on Ted L.,that he hasn’t lost his job already ?
    Does he honestly think Tobias would come back when he’s make better & most important part Tax free money in Swiss League?
    Only “smart” thing he did was cut goalie who clearly doesn’t take playing in NHL seriously .

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      I’m with ya Scott. Geisser’s deal is for 3 years with EV Zug, but maybe he has a clause to exit if the Caps come calling? Not sure, just spitballing.

      • novafyre says:

        Does making an offer extend their rights to him? Even if not accepted? Like placing a hold on a book at the library? He couldn’t decide to come back to any other NHL or AHL team?

    • Doug says:

      What do you care about offering up a contract like that to a defenseman?

      That contract does not impact the salary cap. And, yes, some players will want to come to the NHL to compete against the best talent and POTENTIALLY make a good amount of money in the future.

      • Jon Sorensen says:

        We are not talking about salary cap, we are talking about personal intent on where they want to play. They will be 25 and 26 at end of next season. They were already in the Bears system, played a season or more, and decided to go home.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Not completely surprised. But maybe they sign him as an FA? Unless he was saying he would go to arbitration no matter what.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Theoretically they could sign him to less, if Sammy wanted to stay. I wouldn’t be shocked if that happens.

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      Very possible. Part of me doesn’t see Sammy wanting to leave DC. He has a big Russian support system here.

      • steven says:

        Support is nice however he has shown nothing of wanting to grow upand learn his position as a professional. At 25 going o 36 he is a headcase not worth bringing back on a long term deal I would give him a 1 year offer on a two way deal for $900K and if his support system was wise they would take it if not there are a lot of other goalies out there who can play backup like Fucale or sign Eric Comrie or Kaapo Kahkonen or Charlie Lindgren or even Jon Gillies.

  4. steven says:

    So you trade VV and basically cut Samsonov so at the current time have 0 goalies on the Caps roster. Maybe it is time to search for a new GM as well as a goalie. For GM someone outside the organiarion and young. For goalie Mikko Koskinen or Jack Campbell, basically depends on who will take $3 or $4 mil a year on a 3-4 year deal. If Sammy is willing to sign for $900K fine if not let the headcase walk. Let Fucale be the backup or sign Eric Comrie or Kaapo Kahkonen or Charlie Lindgren or even Jon Gillies.

    For D sign one of Ben Chiarot or Erik Gudbranson or Robert Hagg or Noah Dobson or even Jan Rutta and resign Irwin as he has shown he can play after long periods of sitting.

  5. novafyre says:

    I threw this out as a wild shot on other posts based on my feelings towards him and the fact that Mac had not praised him this past week. But I still thought it was a long shot.

    They are letting him know that he has not yet earned what they have already paid him. I think that they will take him back at a discount and that they are also hoping that Fucale or Shepard (both already under Caps contract I think) will take this as inspiration and rise to the occasion as a cheaper and better #2.

    But his days of demanding star money are gone in DC. If Sammy can do better elsewhere, I wish him luck. Maybe a change of scenery will straighten him out.

    • steven says:

      Totally agree. Fucale may be the 3@ this season but going to need a #1. Frankly I dont see him taking a lesser deal because his ego will not allow it. I say if he of offered soemthing make it a 2 way deal that lets him know you have a lot fo work to do and if you are not willing to do ti then go somewhere else. At this point VV is a bigger lose than Sammy.

  6. BobFV says:

    I completely get this move, but I don’t get the Vanacek thing in combination with this!

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      Yes and yes. Unless they deemed no hope for VV

    • Shell says:

      My take is they shopped both goalies and VV was the one people wanted.There were rumors they tried to shop Sammy at the trade deadline and there were no takers. My opinion, he had the potential and athletic ability but not the motivation or desire.

    • steven says:

      I think that VV is looked at as a career backup not a #1 and Sammy is not even looked at as a #2 anymore but rather a project. And to sign a project for goalie at 25 I would think that he would only get 2 way deals and min salary or maybe a little over. Sad to say but I dont see his ego taking that so maybe its back to Russia for him. I agreeon VV; they wanted a draftpick and got one but now have put themselves ina position where they have to sign a goalie and probably 2 unless Fucale is the #2.

  7. Scottlew73 says:

    My understanding with deals(aka contracts) in the Swiss league is that players have the option if NHL contract is offered & player is wanting out that they will release them pending “compensation” from NHL or whatever league player is going to either money or player who agrees to go to team.
    Most guys in Swiss league would need fairly good offer though,my understanding is besides Tax Free contract they also arrange living quarters & vehicle for players as well as if married and spouse has work in specific field they will also find job for them as well! So pretty hard to talk player out of contract thier!
    Plus with Switzerland being close to many other countries in Europe,with long break in schedule player can travel home if from Europe in manor of couple hours not all day if they were playing in North America.

  8. DWGie26 says:

    Not offering Sammy a QO is the same as Chicago not offering Dylan Strome a QO. Doesn’t mean the teams don’t want them… it means they aren’t willing to pay what they might get in Arbitration. There will be several (if not many) RFA’s who did NOT get QOers that go back to their original teams.

    On our goaltenders… GMBM has a plan. We just don’t know it. But he wouldn’t do these transactions without having something already agreed to in concept. So we’ll hear more about that in the next two days. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Sammy resign with Caps for $1M to $1.5M (still good value on a backup with starting potential).

    It does seem like a lot of RFA’s didn’t get QOers this year. Welcome to year 3 of flat Cap.

  9. Anonymous says:

    What a mess.

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