The 2017-2018 NHL regular season will be coming to a close in less than two weeks. The NHL playoffs, to me, are the most exciting of any professional sports league. You’ll have the double sometimes triple overtime games, the goalie who stands on his head and carries his team, and a lower seed who seemingly always makes a run. Let’s take a look at the top 10 highest paid players and see whether their contracts have turned into a playoff appearance for their respective teams.
These are the top 10 players per salary in the NHL according to Spotrac.
10. Corey Perry – $10,000,00
Corey Perry is a right winger for the Anaheim Ducks, which is where he has spent his entire 12-year NHL career. Perry has eclipsed the 30 goal threshold six times in his career. His highest goal total for a season was 50 in the 2010-2011 season. The Ducks currently sit in the last playoff spot in the Western Conference.
9. Jakub Voracek – $10,000,000
Jakub Voracek is a member of the Philadelphia Flyers. He has played for two teams over the course of his ten-year career, three with the Columbus Bluejackets and seven with the Flyers. His best season points total wise came in the 2014-2015 season (81 points). Although, he is on the verge this season of topping that point total as he currently sits at 80 points with five games remaining. The Flyers sit in the 7th spot of the Eastern Conference.
8. Evgeny Kuznetsov – $10,000,000
Evgeny Kuznetsov is a centerman for the Washington Capitals. He is one of two players for the Capitals that you will see in these rankings; He is in his 5th season, all with the Capitals. Kuznetsov’s best season came in the 2015-2016 season (77 points). The Washington Capitals currently sit in first place of the Metropolitan Division in the Eastern Conference.
7. Alex Ovechkin – $10,000,000
The other member of the Washington Capitals on this list is left winger Alex Ovechkin. He has been a household name for years within the NHL community. Ovechkin is known for his sharpshooting ability and physical style of play. He is in his 12th season, all with the Capitals. Ovechkin has reached the 50 goal milestone a remarkable seven times in his career. This season he has led the Capitals into first place of the Metropolitan Division of the Eastern Conference.
6. Sidney Crosby – $10,900,000
The golden boy of the NHL Sidney Crosby comes in at number 6 on our list. Crosby is a former first overall pick of the Pittsburgh Penguins and a three-time Stanley Cup champion(2009,2016,2017). He is currently in his 13th season with the Penguins. Crosby has tallied more than 100 points in five of his season with a season-high of 120 points. The Pittsburgh Penguins occupy the second place in the Metropolitan Divison of the Eastern Conference.
5. P.K. Subban – $11,000,000
P.K. Subban is a defenseman for the Nashville Predators. He is in his 9th season and second with the Predators. Subban’s previous seven seasons were spent with the Montreal Canadiens. He is known for being one of the best offensive-defenseman in the NHL. Subban has also garnered the reputation as a tough, cocky, player from his peers and the media. Subban’s Nashville Predators sit in first-place on the Western Conference and have guaranteed themselves a playoff spot.
4. Shea Weber – $12,000,000
The defenseman for the Montreal Canadiens comes in at number four. Shea Weber is a long-time veteran of the league playing his 13th NHL season. Webber is a big physical defenseman who has played for the Nashville Predators(11 seasons) and Canadiens(2 seasons). Weber and Subban, the guy right behind him on this list, were involved in a player swap that sent Weber to Montreal and Subban to Nashville. The Montreal Canadiens are eliminated from the 2018 NHL playoffs.
3. Anze Kopitar – $13,000,000
Anze Kopitar is a member of the Los Angeles Kings where he has spent all 12 years of his NHL career. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion(2012 and 2014). Kopitar has won the leading scorer award for the L.A. Kings nine times. He has also made four NHL all-star teams in his career. The Los Angelas Kings currently sit in third place of the Pacific Division in the Western Conference.
2. Jamie Benn – $13,000,000
The Captain of the Dallas Stars Jamie Benn is next on the list. Benn has become one of the best players in the NHL over his nine seasons in the league. He has scored over 20 goals in all of his seasons except one, which came during a lockout-shortened campaign in 2012-2013. The Dallas Stars are currently on the outside looking in of the NHL playoffs.
1. Teammates Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews – $13,800,000
Two members of the Chicago Blackhawks top the list of the highest paid players in the NHL, Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. It’s no surprise that two Blackhawks are at the top of this list as they have been the most successful franchise in the NHL over the past ten years. Kane and Toews have won three Stanley Cups(2010,2013,2015) and have been to another two conference finals(2009 and 2014) as teammates. This 2018 season has been one to forget for the two highest paid players in the league, as Chicago has been eliminated from postseason play for the first time since the 2007-2008 season.
So, to recap the three highest paid players in the league will not be extending their seasons into the playoffs, with an overall total of four from the list. That leaves six players who are receiving hefty paychecks in playoff contention.