Kukla's Korner Hockey
by George Malik on 04/28/14 at 11:46 PM ET
Here in Metro Detroit, Fox Sports Detroit color commentator Mickey Redmond dropped something of a bombshell in suggesting that the Wings should pursue Shea Weber, but the Nashville Predators' captain would all but cost the moon, the stars, the sun, an arm, a leg and all the horses in the barn--and the barn--to acquire.
With the Predators in something of a rebuild after having fired Barry Trotz, the Tennessean's Josh Cooper examined the concept of the Predators trading Weber and his enormous contract (gigantic, humongous big lockout-proof signing bonuses included), and he spoke with everyone from a Vanderbilt sports economics professor to Sportsnet's Mark Spector, NHL.com's Dan Rosen and the Hockey News's Ken Campbell about such a deal, and their conclusion isn't going to warm the hearts of those who believe that the Predators might be tempted to move big #6:
"The way I see it, the salary cap is going to be about $71 million next season, and the Predators currently have close to $51 million committed for 2014-15. That means they'll have to spend another $5 million just to get up to the floor, even with Weber on their payroll," said Ken Campbell of The Hockey News. "So with Weber, the Predators get a hefty salary that helps them get up to the floor and it just happens to be attached to one of the best defensemen on the planet."
And while the Predators do need more offense, Weber does provide a special skill — his 106 mph slap shot, one of the most feared and potent in the NHL — that might lead to more points than fans realize. He was just a minus-2 this season for a team with a minus-19 goal differential.
"The Predators would have to get very lucky to get another face of the franchise in a trade for Weber," NHL.com's Rosen said. "They made him the most important player in franchise history when they matched the contract. Let him be that and build around him."
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