The Washington Capitals still have a compliance buyout left, which means they could completely rid themselves of the final three seasons of forward Brooks Laich’s $4.5 million annual cap hit.
Laich, who has battled through groin problems in recent years and would need to pass a physical in order to be bought out, was only able to score eight goals and 15 points in 51 games in 2013-14. All the same, it looks like Washington plans to stick with him.
“I’ll be honest with you, I have not heard one whisper,” Laich’s agent, Roly Thompson told CSN Washington. “This is not because I represent Brooks, it’s just a general statement:
“He is the glue of the team. He’s the guy in the dressing room that’s the leader and when he’s not there or injured, things tend to not be as cohesive. So, if there is one guy you would not want to let go it would be Brooks.”
Despite Laich’s recent struggles, it would be surprising if Washington did declare its intentions to buy him out at this point. New Capitals GM Brian MacLellan already said in May that they “need” Laich.
The question is if he can stay healthy. Given that the Capitals will forfeit their final compliance buyout if they don’t use it this summer, they better hope he bounces back.