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As Tampa Bay showed, big threes just can't exist in this NHL

Updated: February 29, 2008, 3:14 PM ET
By Terry Frei | Special to ESPN.com

After nearly three seasons under the NHL's salary-cap system, this much is obvious: There are no magic formulas for coping with it.

But, at the very least, the Tampa Bay Lightning's unraveling should make GMs increasingly wary of investing anything close to a third of the available cap space in a given season in a big three of forwards, leaving less to invest in the rest of the roster.

Even limiting it to three might be arbitrary, yet it's a handy frame of reference. ...

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