Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Carolina Hurricanes Will Match Aho Offer Sheet

from Chip Alexander of the News & Observer,

The Carolina Hurricanes will match the offer sheet made Monday to center Sebastian Aho by the Montreal Canadiens, Canes owner Tom Dundon said Tuesday.

Dundon said an announcement would be made Tuesday.

Of his reaction to the offer sheet, Dundon, said, “We’re surprised. We love the player and we’re happy to have this done. And surprised something would have thought this would work.”

continued

added 12:24pm,

 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

Paul's avatar

Canes have a 1pm ET press conference to announce they will be signing Aho.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 07/02/19 at 11:26 AM ET

Primis's avatar

The Canes have $11m under the cap *after* this signing.

Was MTL just hoping to show Dundon as a cheapskate on the off chance they didn’t match or something?  I really don’t get any of the logic involved with the offer sheet.  It’s not like MTL was just trying to drive up the price for a divisional rival or something, as MTL is in the Flortheast and the Canes in the Metro.

Posted by Primis on 07/02/19 at 11:42 AM ET

Paul's avatar

If the Canes want a little payback, they can hold off the signing for another 6 days, which means the Habs cannot make a trade during this period.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 07/02/19 at 11:44 AM ET

Avatar

I really don’t get any of the logic involved with the offer sheet.

Bergevin, the guy who traded Subban for Weber and Sergachev for Drouin and signed Carey Price to an insane contract, doesn’t appear to be that good at his job.

Word on TSN yesterday was that Aho was asking $9.5M and Carolina countered with $7.5M, so Bergevin basically made it so that the Canes and Aho wouldn’t have a protracted negotiation to get where everyone knew they were going to end up, somewhere between 8 and 9 million a year…probably $8.5.

So, if Dundon or Waddell want to “pay back” Bergevin then I suggest a nice edible arrangement with a thank you card.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 07/02/19 at 11:50 AM ET

Paul's avatar

Waddell says no date set for the official signing.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 07/02/19 at 12:10 PM ET

Avatar

Waddell says no date set for the official signing.

I hope he takes every second he’s alotted.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 07/02/19 at 12:22 PM ET

Avatar

You have to figure there is a big difference between perhaps a guy’s own
aversion to or model of not spending certain ways - and a rival organization basically challenging him with success premised on him being “too cheap” or unable to figure out how to handle all the upfront money. Especially with people who are so competitive they own sports teams

Now if the salary had been ridiculous and the return had been huge that’s another thing. But it isn’t. It’s mainly just not as long as the team would prefer and hits them upfront.

Posted by lefty.30 on 07/02/19 at 04:32 PM ET

Avatar

a rival organization basically challenging him with success premised on him being “too cheap” or unable to figure out how to handle all the upfront money.

The arrogance of the offer sheet was pretty amazing. Reasonable salary (smack dab in hte middle of Aho’s initial ask and Carolina’s initial offer) and term (though, as you say, shorter than the team would’ve preferred) but a big payout in the first year?

His cap hit is $8.5M, so if it were evenly spread out he’d make $17M in his first two years and instead he’s going to make $22M?

OH KNOW! Whatever is an NHL owner to do???

And yeah, the deal takes him directly to free agency, but if on July 1 leading into his last year they know they can’t re-sign him then he would have incredible trade value (assuming his production doesn’t drop off, of course) especially because he would only have to be paid $750K by the team that gets him.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 07/02/19 at 05:06 PM ET

Avatar

I hope he takes every second he’s alotted.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 07/02/19 at 01:22 PM ET

Might want to get it in a *little* early, hate to get screwed by a jammed fax or a time-zone error (pretty sure both of which have happened before)  LOL

Posted by EthrDemon on 07/02/19 at 11:12 PM ET

d ca's avatar

...I really don’t get any of the logic involved with the offer sheet.  It’s not like MTL was just trying to drive up the price for a divisional rival or something, as MTL is in the Flortheast and the Canes in the Metro.
Posted by Primis on 07/02/19 at 12:42 PM ET

I believe Montreal targeted bigger name free agents and as they were signed they simply threw an offer sheet out at the level that wasn’t going to deplete their prospects. Aho was willing to sign a 5 year term because it took him to free agency. Canes wanted to sign him to an 8 year term (@8M per year) according to statements

Waddell said Saturday that Aho had been offered an eight-year contract by the Canes during the recent NHL Draft in Vancouver.
  “They said they’d get back to us with a counter (offer) and told us Friday there was no counter coming, so we figured this (offer sheet) was in the workings,” Waddell said.

Different divisions but same conference (NHL is taking heat for playoff format very real possibility it reverts back making these teams closer rivals) since they finished 3 points apart.
So if Aho signed in Montreal, great. If he didn’t, well that weakens a conference rival and means the player becomes available 3 years sooner in UFA if he really wants to play for us.
Aho had no leverage (beyond holding out as he wasn’t arbitration eligible yet) and this contract ensures UFA as soon as possible. That’s what’s really bothering the Canes not the offer sheet.


but what goes around comes around…Fedorov’s offer sheet done by Carolina Hurricanes with the poison pill of having to pay 28M in 1 year (actually 4 months since he was holding out) if the team he was on reached the conference finals on a 38M total contract…Hockey gods payback.

Posted by d ca on 07/02/19 at 11:48 PM ET

d ca's avatar

Word on TSN yesterday was that Aho was asking $9.5M and Carolina countered with $7.5M, so Bergevin basically made it so that the Canes and Aho wouldn’t have a protracted negotiation to get where everyone knew they were going to end up, somewhere between 8 and 9 million a year…probably $8.5.

So, if Dundon or Waddell want to “pay back” Bergevin then I suggest a nice edible arrangement with a thank you card.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 07/02/19 at 12:50 PM ET

No, it wasn’t welcomed by Carolina. They wanted an 8 year term that ate into Aho’s UFA years (read the quote above from Waddell at the draft). The 5 year term makes him an UFA as soon as he is eligible (just like what Matthews got from the Leafs).

Aho had no leverage beyond a holdout until Nov (anymore and he would lose an entire year’s salary) as he wasn’t/isn’t eligible for salary arbitration until July ‘21, so Carolina could have forced a 1 year deal at a low price. Then another 1 year contract next year before Aho could have done anything about it.

And any Wings fan can tell you the frosty relationship ownership will have with Aho after having to pay so much of his contract in year 1 (Fedorov’s offer sheet ring any bells). Which will lead to his UFA departure.

While Aho does have rental trade value on the back end of this contract. By year 5, it’s just that rental pricing and ask Winnipeg fans how that worked out for them with Trouba compared to what they thought he was worth.

It wasn’t about splitting the difference between the player ask and the team AAV it was about the Offer sheet compensation chart and only having to give up a 1st, 2nd, and a 3rd for Aho. That is a essentially a trade that any GM would have made.

Posted by d ca on 07/03/19 at 12:03 AM ET

Avatar

No, it wasn’t welcomed by Carolina.

Good. I didn’t say it was welcomed by Carolina. Thanks for bolding it though. You sure showed me!

And any Wings fan can tell you the frosty relationship ownership will have with Aho after having to pay so much of his contract in year 1 (Fedorov’s offer sheet ring any bells). Which will lead to his UFA departure.

Really? You’re going to pretend that a nearly year-long impasse between the Wings and Fedorov (he signed his deal in FEBRUARY after sitting out for nearly five months) is the same as Aho signing a deal on day one of free agency, a deal that is almost exactly what Carolina wanted?

By year 5, it’s just that rental pricing and ask Winnipeg fans how that worked out for them with Trouba compared to what they thought he was worth.

Trouba is not a UFA and he has had a contentious relationship with the Jets for years.

Again, a situation that is not in any way similar to Aho’s.

Aho had no leverage beyond a holdout until Nov (anymore and he would lose an entire year’s salary) as he wasn’t/isn’t eligible for salary arbitration until July ‘21, so Carolina could have forced a 1 year deal at a low price. Then another 1 year contract next year before Aho could have done anything about it.

So, in theory the Jets could have decided eventually to make this a contentious, Trouba-like situation.

By the way, in your imaginary scenario here, after forcing him to sign one-year after one-year contracts that he wouldn’t be gone the second he could leave via free agency?

But again, Aho signed his offer sheet on July 1st. There had not yet been any contentious negotiations. There was an opening offer and an opening ask and then an offer sheet.

That is a essentially a trade that any GM would have made.

And that’s why it’s a stupid offer sheet. Of course any GM would give up a 1, 2 and 3 for Aho, but

NO

GM would trade away a player like Aho for a 1, 2 and 3.

Ken Holland got a 1, 2, and 3 for Tomas Tatar, do you think any Aho is an equal player to Tomas Tatar?

That’s what I thought.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 07/03/19 at 08:09 AM ET

Avatar

I really do see how Cane’s ownership would be sour over this. In the end they pay the same amount of money for Aho. It’s just that the distribution is different with more up front. If this was a cash strapped owner perhaps this would be a problem but Dundon has plenty of assets.

Sure they preferred an 8 year deal but they can deal with that.

I still think Montreal miscalculated. They really need to go to the next tier (and perhaps longer term) if they wanted the Hurricanes to think twice.

The Canes have a week to match the offer sheet but Waddell said no decision had been made on when that official notice would be sent.

“It obviously will be in the time frame allotted by the CBA,” he said.

Sure sounds like the Hurricanes will take as long as possible. The Habs having missed out on Duchene, Aho and others will scrambling to make their team better.

If you are going to make an offer sheet, you better be aggressive or it only hurts you. Montreal was seriously trying to get Aho on the cheap (1st, 2nd and 3rd pick). Carolina has to be laughing.

Posted by evileye on 07/03/19 at 08:15 AM ET

d ca's avatar

Good. I didn’t say it was welcomed by Carolina. ... Fedorov (he signed his deal in FEBRUARY after sitting out for nearly five months) is the same as Aho signing a deal on day one of free agency, a deal that is almost exactly what Carolina wanted?

... By year 5, i
Reply: Trouba is not a UFA and he has had a contentious relationship with the Jets for years.

Again, a situation that is not in any way similar to Aho’s.

(talking about Aho) So, in theory the Jets could have decided eventually to make this a contentious, Trouba-like situation.
But again, Aho signed his offer sheet on July 1st. There had not yet been any contentious negotiations. There was an opening offer and an opening ask and then an offer sheet.
That is a essentially a trade that any GM would have made….And that’s why it’s a stupid offer sheet.

...That’s what I thought.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 07/03/19 at 09:09 AM ET

OMG…try re-reading it for purpose and not taking every little thing you disagree with as a personal affront to you.

You didn’t say it was welcomed. Contrasted by Carolina got almost exactly what they wanted.

Hmm…if they got almost exactly what they wanted then the offer sheet must have been welcomed by anyone’s critical thinking.

Real world enough: I got almost exactly what I wanted from the guy that bought my house because someone else put in the exact offer that he matched…but that other guy’s offer I didn’t say it was welcomed.

HUH?

Fedorov’s offer sheet was the most expensive 1 year offer sheet in NHL history (even surpassing Weber’s 14 years later. Fedorov’s and Aho’s were signed because that is all the leverage either had in negotiations (other than sitting out the whole year or Aho going to the KHL). It doesn’t matter if they signed July 1st at 12:01 or in Feb (an option not available to Aho with the rules now). The offer sheet’s year 1 payments are the similarities that you failed to comprehend. So yes, Aho’s and Fedorov’s offer sheets are very, very similar.

It’s not a stupid offer sheet. It was front-loading to put the squeeze on small-budget team and giving up only a 1, 2, and a 3 for Aho is worth throwing an offer sheet.

What did Montreal lose by throwing this offer sheet at the time they did?

The ability to sign Lee? The reports there was a bidding war and the Isle’s won (their captain back—Montreal could have easily got the impression that he was using them for leverage and backed out). What else? The ability to throw another offer sheet? Carolina is the team that had the RFA and was known for being budgetary restricted. So whom else did they lose after the offer sheet was thrown? Is there a punishment that is going to happen by the league for this offer sheet? GM’s have a shelf life with their teams now. Look back to 2014 and see all but 9 GM’s have been hired been hired by their current teams since then.

Trouba and the Jets situation was brought up as bridge deals to maximize the team’sleverage thing…maybe you didn’t catch that…..so again 4 years from now (in year 5) had the Canes gone the bridge deal way, because the team holds almost all leverage in negotiations until UFA that is UNLESS an offer sheet was presented Aho would have put the Hurricanes in the position that the Jets faced with Trouba and been just as contentious.

Hopefully this clarifies why it wasn’t a stupid offer sheet.

But in case you still disagree consider this: just because something doesn’t work doesn’t make it stupid. It was incredibly pragmatic at the time it was thrown for Montreal to do so. It cost them only the ability to sign Lee, which didn’t see a likely scenario given his option to return to the Isles.

And as a bonus, Aho will be an UFA at the end of this contract instead of a possible outcome where he was signed to an eight year term IF the Canes didn’t go the bridge route (having learned from the Jets leveraging Trouba outcome).

Posted by d ca on 07/03/19 at 11:47 AM ET

Add a Comment

Please limit embedded image or media size to 575 pixels wide.

Add your own avatar by joining Kukla's Korner, or logging in and uploading one in your member control panel.

Captchas bug you? Join KK or log in and you won't have to bother.

Smileys

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Feed

Most Recent Blog Posts

About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com