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Sources Say Nashville Has No Other Choice Than To Match Weber Offer Sheet

from Scott Burnside of ESPN,

Multiple sources told ESPN.com on Thursday that they believe the ownership group has no choice but to breathe deep and match the offer sheet.

As for the idea that somehow Weber was indicating a desire to depart Nashville, Weber would have known that by signing the offer sheet he was likely to end up a Predator long-term.

Was it his preference to go to Philadelphia? Perhaps. But that is a moot point assuming the Predators match.

Weber knew Poile’s position going into the process, so he knew that by signing the Flyers’ offer, he was narrowing his career options to two, either of which was going to make him wildly wealthy and secure for what will amount to pretty much the rest of his career.

If Weber truly wanted out, he could have explained to Poile that he had no intention of signing a long-term deal in Nashville. He could have asked the Predators to trade him to a team prepared to offer him a long-term deal this summer before a new collective bargaining agreement comes into place that might eliminate these kinds of long-term, front-loaded deals.

That would have provided a risk for Weber, of course, hoping that such a deal could have been consummated.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: shea+weber

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tuxedoshirt?

Posted by Garth on 07/19/12 at 09:29 PM ET

phillyphever's avatar

So does that mean the owners are actually gonna pay the first year of the contract though the money in their own wallets? I’ll believe it when it happens.

Posted by phillyphever on 07/19/12 at 10:10 PM ET

Hootinani's avatar

Even without the immediate 26 mil payout, the cap hit would be prohibitive for them.  Over the past few years, Nashville has operated at about 50-52 mil for the cap number.  They currently stand at almost 41 mil.  Unless the owners are willing to start spending closer to the cap, signing Weber would leave them with approx. 3 mil to finish out there team, which would include acquiring at least 1 more dman and probably 1 or 2 forwards.  This would mean they would have to start pulling heavily from there prospects to stay at there current salary.

Im not saying it wont happen, because lord knows Weber is the lifeblood of that team, especially now, but it would be a big risk in the short term for sure.

Posted by Hootinani on 07/19/12 at 10:32 PM ET

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Damn, I respect Holmgren.  Guy GM’s like he played - at one speed only.  If Weber is landed, what a coup!  If Nashville matches, he’s just prevented Weber from playing for the deep pockets of the Ranger, Penguins or Red Wings.  Every team had the option to do this.  No other team did.  Homer did.  It is a crappy rule, but it is part of the game.  Great job.  Amazing. 

When Pronger went down, that changed everything.  Had Pronger been fit, I doubt the NJ series would have been so lopsided.  Holmgren gave up a ton to get him.  And due to a horrific injury (let’s cry a bit for the Flyers), Pronger is no more.  Like him or hate him, he’s an amazing defender and you want him on your team. 

Speaking objectively, this move was the epitome of shrewed.  It was a total display of the Holmgrens very big balls.  Huge cojones.  Massive. 

Like or hate the move, it must be respected.  It was amazing.  I wager the rest of the league is angry when they should be jealous saying, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

Keep this in mind - Weber didn’t have to sign.  Yes, it makes him wildly wealthy.  But if he didn’t like what Philly had to offer, didn’t like the market, the team, the coaching staff, he would have failed to put his signature on that piece of paper.  He did it because (a) he realized he’s a very rich man and (b) he has no issue with playing in Philly. 

Here’s a good question to ask:  Do you think Poile is asking Weber, “Hey, would you rather play in Philly alongside Giroux?”  If the answer is yes, I wager Poile calls Holmgren and says, “We won’t match - if and only if you give us the Schenns.”  Then what does Philly do?  Do they ship those two back to recoup the picks?  And then, does Holmgren say, “You are bluffing.”  And so the poker game goes… 

Nonetheless, hat-tip to Holmgren for creating a wonder hot topic.  It give us so much to talk about in those few short months we are without the sport we all love.

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/19/12 at 10:59 PM ET

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Over the past few years, Nashville has operated at about 50-52 mil for the cap number.

Two things.  Whether he was just posturing or not is up in the air, but Poile has said a bunch of times over the past few months that Nashville would be a cap team.

Another thing is that they simply can’t operate at 50-52 million this year because the floor is 54 million.  Unless they add Weber and then overpay for a few other UFAs they can comfortably ice a team around the cap floor.

On the other hand, if they don’t match the offer then they’re likely going to have to wildly overpay just to meet the cap floor.  Teams normally carry 14 forwards and 7 defensemen, so they would have to sign two more forwards and three defensemen for a total of about $16M, and who that is left on the market is worth those kinds of salaries?  They’d face the same dilemma that Detroit faces now in that they’d have a big hole to fill on defense and money to spend on it, but nobody to spend that money on.

Posted by Garth on 07/19/12 at 11:00 PM ET

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Damn, I respect Holmgren

Yeah if is successful, if not he is a POS giving a poison pill to another franchise. What goes around comes around. Hopefully someone else will deliver a nice return favor.

Posted by timbits on 07/19/12 at 11:04 PM ET

tuxedoTshirt's avatar

Posted by Garth on 07/19/12 at 07:29 PM ET

Yup.  Looks like Burnside was also annoyed by that foolishness.

Posted by tuxedoTshirt from the Home of the 1937 World Champions on 07/19/12 at 11:13 PM ET

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If I am Nashville I sign weber wait a year and trade him to Tampa, Edmonton, Calgary, islanders, or Florida.

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 07/19/12 at 11:21 PM ET

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Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 07/19/12 at 09:21 PM ET

Well, you can bet that there’s going to be one team added to the no-trade list.

Posted by Garth on 07/19/12 at 11:23 PM ET

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Yeah if is successful, if not he is a POS giving a poison pill to another franchise

Why a POS?  He’s playing within the rules, no?  He’s trying to improve his club.  And in the same theory, he’s also preventing other clubs from lapping him.  He was kinda forced to do this, do you agree?  Get the best defenceman in the League and improve your club or wait and watch as some other team pilfers that talent. 

Again, like him or hate him, this move is amazing. 

I’m saying I like it or not, but it is an incredible move. Again, every team in the League had the chance to do the same (understanding that not all have the deep pockets).

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/19/12 at 11:23 PM ET

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If I am Nashville I sign weber wait a year and trade him to Tampa, Edmonton, Calgary, islanders, or Florida.

The contract states he can’t be moved after year one (total no movement clause that kicks in after year one - meaning that if he goes to Philly, they can trade him in year one).  And according to the CBA, he can’t be traded for the first year.  So, he’s locked in.  He’s a Predator or Flyer for life if he so choses.

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/19/12 at 11:27 PM ET

tuxedoTshirt's avatar

He’s a Predator or Flyer for life if he so choses.

Yup.  He lost me.

Posted by tuxedoTshirt from the Home of the 1937 World Champions on 07/19/12 at 11:32 PM ET

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Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/19/12 at 09:27 PM ET

Source?

Also, as many many many contracts have show, no-trades and no-moves don’t really mean much.

Posted by Garth on 07/19/12 at 11:35 PM ET

Alan's avatar

If Nashville matches, he’s just prevented Weber from playing for the deep pockets of the Ranger, Penguins or Red Wings.

For the period of one calendar year, yes. You would be fooling youself if you believed this to be the case for Weber’s entire career, though.

But really, it depends on money, and whether Nashville has that kind of money to pay him every time the calendar hits 1 July.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 07/19/12 at 11:52 PM ET

Crow's avatar

Nashville paid him 7.5 mill last year, why wouldn’t they match a cap hit of 7.8?  He’s their captain and top d-man who is irreplaceable. If anything, Philly just helped Nashville lock him up for life.

Posted by Crow on 07/19/12 at 11:58 PM ET

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Why a POS?

Because Philly is dumping a ridiculously front loaded contract with penalties on Nashville. This contract makes no sense other than to try and punish Nashville. Philly would never sign one of their own players to such a contract and so the very nature is to screw the other team.

Posted by timbits on 07/19/12 at 11:58 PM ET

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penalties on Nashville.

Penalties?  What penalties?  Penalties for not taking care of one’s own shop?  Seriously?  That argument is filled with holes.  Nashville had several YEARS to lock this guy up to prevent this type of situation.  The CBA is what it is.  PLAYERS and owners agreed to this.

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/20/12 at 12:07 AM ET

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Nashville paid him 7.5 mill last year, why wouldn’t they match a cap hit of 7.8?  He’s their captain and top d-man who is irreplaceable. If anything, Philly just helped Nashville lock him up for life.

I think the concern is more with the actual cash involved in the first calendar year of the contract not the actual cap hit… But I expect Nashville to match for sure.

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 07/20/12 at 12:09 AM ET

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Nashville paid him 7.5 mill last year, why wouldn’t they match a cap hit of 7.8?

Let me explain this to you - Nashville is a small market team.  They rely on on their rolling income - much like living paycheque to paycheque.  When Holmgrem stepped in and gave Weber 27 million in year one of the contract, suddenly Nashville has real issues.  They publically stated they understand the “complexity of the offer” meaning they don’t know if they can afford such a deal.

Make sense now?

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/20/12 at 12:11 AM ET

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But I expect Nashville to match for sure.

I actually think Poile won’t match.  He’ll go back to Holmgren and barter for a deal - he’s got a history of this.  He’ll strike a deal for the Simmonds, L.Schenn, Lilja and the Flyer’s first round pick and return the compensation to Philly.  Philly has clearly postured they want Weber, but were not willing to give up Couturier or Brayden Schenn (what Nashville apparently asked for in a trade).  Now Holmgren has the upper hand.  He can veto any trade.  He can say, “Take my first rounders for two years.  I don’t care.  Weber comes around once every ten years.”

So, Voracek, Simmonds, Read, or some combination is what will go back.

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/20/12 at 12:17 AM ET

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Nashville will match no doubt in my mind.  Secondly, I feel like Nashville is probably done “dealing” with Philadelphia as you suggest… I also would not be surprised if many other GM’s avoid Philly after this.  No GM likes to see poaching, and that is essentially what holmgren has done.

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 07/20/12 at 12:30 AM ET

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GtoL:

You may be correct.  But if the reports are accurate that Holmgren was tired of deadlines and Poile’s inability to pull a trigger, then that establishes that Poile wanted a return on Weber and was looking for the best deal.  Now, he’s emasculated.  He has NO DEAL.  He suffers the indignity of matching or working a deal.  I think he knows that Weber has definitively made his position be known.  He wants money and would rather pursue a Cup outside of Nashville..  Therefore, logic dictates that Poile is now scrambling for the best ECONOMIC decision for his club.

Just my thoughts.  Again, not trying to be anything other than objective.

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/20/12 at 12:38 AM ET

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Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/19/12 at 10:01 PM ET

Thanks.

He wants money and would rather pursue a Cup outside of Nashville..

I would argue that it’s more about wanting money than pursuing a cup.  He’s essentially said that he wants to be very, very rich and while he may prefer to be very, very rich in Philly he’s ok with being very, very rich in Nashville.

Posted by Garth on 07/20/12 at 01:09 AM ET

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Nashville ownership group have had to take 60M of own $ and put it into team last 5 years. How are they going to match the offersheet? Polie trying rewrite history when he let Scott Stevens go.

Posted by FlyersFan on 07/20/12 at 01:10 AM ET

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I would argue that it’s more about wanting money than pursuing a cup.  He’s essentially said that he wants to be very, very rich and while he may prefer to be very, very rich in Philly he’s ok with being very, very rich in Nashville.

According to his agent, he declined the Rangers as he is a “small town guy” and that environment wasn’t his bag.  Yes, he’s opted for riches.  No question.  But he’s done it with an ounce of selectivity.  Agreed?

He’s fine with Philly.  He’s fine with Nashville.  Those are his options as soon as he put ink to paper.  He knew this. 

No other team was involved, yet all other teams in the League all had the option.  Don’t get me wrong, Philly clearly wanted to resign Jagr and Carle while making a run at Suter.  None of that happened.  None of it.  That is the story that gets lost today.  Philly would never have been in a position to do this had they gotten their wish:  Suter or Parise.  An indictment of Philly for acting this way is unfair.  They tried to retain their team and lost out.  They went to the next step.  So be it.  Holmgrem is a genius.

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/20/12 at 01:28 AM ET

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I tell you what, I would hate to be the Flyers. With Timomen, Hartnell, Giroux, Scheen all becoming free agents in the next two years. It;s now open range for any other team to hit up on these players. Now there’s no reason to hold back.

Posted by 1975 from DC on 07/20/12 at 01:43 AM ET

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I tell you what, I would hate to be the Flyers. With Timomen, Hartnell, Giroux, Scheen all becoming free agents in the next two years. It;s now open range for any other team to hit up on these players. Now there’s no reason to hold back.

Posted by 1975 from DC on 07/19/12 at 11:43 PM ET

Timomen has a very bad back and might retire after the 2012-2013 season. Come Homer isnt dumb

Posted by FlyersFan on 07/20/12 at 01:52 AM ET

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Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/19/12 at 11:28 PM ET

I don’t disagree with with anything you said.

Well, except maybe for the part about Holmgren being a genius.  Ballsy yes, but this is a desperation move more than it’s any kind of genius.  He knows that Poile will do what he can to convince the owners to let him match the deal and he knew that in order to get someone away from their team via the offer sheet you need to make it as difficult as possible for them to match it.

A ballsy, potentially good move, but I don’t know that I can call it genius.

Posted by Garth on 07/20/12 at 02:08 AM ET

Chet's avatar

it’s a genius move. it’s designed to either get weber at market value (and win a cup) OR cripple the preds financially for the next few years minimum.

if weber goes to philly they’re a cup favorite from jump, or at least duking it out with pitt for the next decade. it’ll be like det/col back in the 90s…

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 07/20/12 at 03:03 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

I don’t remember anyone hammering Doug Wilson for offering an offer-sheet to the next hot thing this side of Keith that year in Hjalmersonsonsn-whatever.. forcing the Hawks cap issues and then signing their young Stanley Cup winning goaltender Antii Niemi to one.  Last I checked teams are still trading with him too.

It’s part of the game, I dig Holmgren for doing whatever it takes to win.  It’d actually be AGAINST the rules of teams agreed he’s a poacher and stopped doing business with him.  Weird huh?

With teams relying so heavily on drafting and developing now, and locking up FAs to lifelong deals and giving everyone and their brother a no-trade clause, where are you supposed to supplant your talent from then?  It is what it is, but it’s legal and with things being the way they are, you either accept mediocrity sometimes or you go for the grand slam.. Homer went for it.

Now…. if you want to talk about cap circumvention that’s a different story.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 07/20/12 at 03:21 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Posted by
              Chet
             
              from twitter: thegansen on
              07/20/12 at 01:03 AM ET

Don’t you mean duking it out with Minn??

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 07/20/12 at 03:22 AM ET

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Source:


http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1265376-shea-weber-flyers-breaking-down-why-predators-have-to-match-phillys-offer

Posted by Bob from Washington, DC on 07/19/12 at 10:01 PM ET

Bleacher Report. Figures.

Anyway, if that link says Nashville has to include a NTC in the contract in order to match it, whoever wrote the article has no idea what he’s talking about, which would explain why he would be writing for bleacher report. Term, structure, dollar amount, that all needs to be matched. A NTC does not at all.

Secondly, I feel like Nashville is probably done “dealing” with Philadelphia as you suggest

I don’t. I think a nice, cap destroying offer sheet may be in Claude Giroux’s future. Holmgren will match of course, but that’s kind of the point.

So does that mean the owners are actually gonna pay the first year of the contract though the money in their own wallets? I’ll believe it when it happens.

Posted by phillyphever on 07/19/12 at 08:10 PM ET

Since this offer came during CBA negotiations, methinks Nashville ownership expects to pay Weber with Snyder’s money, via revenue sharing they’re about to begin lobbying hard for.

Posted by larry from pitt on 07/20/12 at 03:23 AM ET

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Anyway, if that link says Nashville has to include a NTC in the contract in order to match it, whoever wrote the article has no idea what he’s talking about, which would explain why he would be writing for bleacher report. Term, structure, dollar amount, that all needs to be matched. A NTC does not at all.

John Shannon @JSportsnet
Weber’s agent JBousquet confirms on PTS that Flyers’ offer sheet can’t have no-trade clause,but an amendment has been discussed with team.

Posted by FlyersFan on 07/20/12 at 03:30 AM ET

tuxedoTshirt's avatar

cap destroying offer sheet may be in Claude Giroux’s future

Unless he likes his team and its ability to contend.

Posted by tuxedoTshirt from the Home of the 1937 World Champions on 07/20/12 at 04:14 AM ET

phillyphever's avatar

Secondly, I feel like Nashville is probably done “dealing” with Philadelphia as you suggest

I don’t. I think a nice, cap destroying offer sheet may be in Claude Giroux’s future. Holmgren will match of course, but that’s kind of the point.

I’m willing to bet he gets a new deal sometime this season or next offseason. They’re not gonna let him get to RFA.

Posted by phillyphever on 07/20/12 at 08:29 AM ET

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I’m willing to bet he gets a new deal sometime this season or next offseason. They’re not gonna let him get to RFA.

Well he is the best player in the league, so the flyers are going to need to pay him as such.  9+ million a year.

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 07/20/12 at 09:15 AM ET

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Nashville will have a hard enough time matching Weber, so I doubt they make a big offer to anyone. The worst case would be they make an offer they can’t really afford and the opposing team takes the pick.

I don’t like how the deal was structured since the NHL has stated you need to meet the “spirit” of the cap, but Holmgren did what any big market team is capable of doing under the terms of the current CBA. Owners slitting each others throats is all what the CBA is about.

Posted by hockey1919 from mid-atlantic on 07/20/12 at 01:41 PM ET

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