The Detroit Red Wings re-signed newly-acquired forward Klim Kostin to a two-year deal today, hours before he would have become an unrestricted free agent.
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) July 1, 2023
As announced – and I love that the Red Wings are finally doing this (and have been since last summer, to be fair) – the deal carries a $2 million salary cap hit.
The Wings acquired Kostin and Kailer Yamamoto – who is in the process of being bought out – from the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday for future considerations. Effectively, the cost of Kostin’s restricted free agent rights was the Red Wings dealing with Yamamoto’s cap hit.
However, there was an added wrinkle yesterday, when the Red Wings opted not to give Kostin a qualifying offer, meaning he would have become an unrestricted free agent. One theory, seemingly proven by this signing, is that the Red Wings didn’t bother with a qualifying offer because the two sides were so close on an actual contract. That seems like an unnecessary risk to me but clearly it worked out. Another theory is that the Wings wanted to ensure they got Kostin on a multi-year deal and didn’t want to risk giving him a qualifying offer for only one year that he might accept, though Kostin would have to have accepted significantly less money to go that route.
I like this deal for the Wings. Kostin really seemed to find his stride as the season went on with the Oilers and the $2 million cap hit is entirely reasonable.
Because I’m a jersey number geek, my prediction is that, once he dresses for the Red Wings, he’ll be wearing the #24 of the seemingly-departing Pius Suter.