Twenty elect for salary arbitration

Here's a look at the 20 players who filed for salary arbitration by the deadline on Sunday:

Team Player 08-09 cap hit
Anaheim Ducks James Wisniewski 0.900
Atlanta Thrashers Colby Armstrong 1.200
Boston Bruins Matt Hunwick 0.750
Buffalo Sabres Clarke MacArthur 0.522
Carolina Hurricanes Tuomo Ruutu 2.250
Chicago Blackhawks Aaron Johnson 0.525
Columbus Blue Jackets Marc Methot 0.522
Detroit Red Wings Jiri Hudler 1.015
Edmonton Oilers Denis Grebeshkov 1.500
Minnesota Wild Kyle Brodziak 0.497
Montreal Canadiens Tomas Plekanec 1.600
New Jersey Devils Travis Zajac 0.984
New York Islanders Nate Thompson 0.500
New York Rangers Ryan Callahan 0.575
New York Rangers Nikolai Zherdev 2.500
Phoenix Coyotes Nigel Dawes 0.588
Phoenix Coyotes Daniel Winnik 0.532
Tampa Bay Lightning Matt Smaby 0.792
Vancouver Canucks Kyle Wellwood 0.998
Washington Capitals Milan Jurcina 0.881
Average 0.982

All relatively young, all relatively cheap and all, likely, expecting a raise of some sort.

Last year, 15 players elected for arbitration and just two — Shaone Morrisonn and Ville Koistinen — actually went through the process. I wrote extensively about Morrisonn's hearing last summer (full story), and it wasn't a pretty one — which may be why he didn't elect to go through the same process again despite having those rights.

He was awarded a contract just about right in the middle of what the two sides had asked for, $1.975-million, while Koistinen received $700,000 after being a low impact player the year before.

I'll have more coverage of arbitration as we get closer to the hearings at the end of the month. Expect many of these 20 to sign slowly over the coming weeks, with quite a few deals getting done as the hearings approach.

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