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Weber Options

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

And so, now the hockey world eyeballs Shea Weber and wonders what the big guy will do.

My ESPN The Magazine colleague Craig Custance did a great job breaking that down yesterday. A restricted free agent, the Nashville Predators captain will be a major story line all summer long regardless of his decision in the wake of Ryan Suter’s departure.

“He’s still in disbelief,” Kevin Epp, one of Weber’s agents at Titan Sports Management, told ESPN.com Thursday. “They were so close this year in terms of the team’s chances. They really had a shot. Shea believed there was a good chance that Ryan would stay there. So, right now, Shea is still processing this news.”

At this point, anything remains possible. Weber could come conclude that the Predators are still a contender, especially depending what they do to replace Suter, and maybe Weber does sign a long-term deal this summer.

Or, after further pondering, the 2010 Olympic gold medalist might instead come to the realization that it’s time to move and turn down any long-term offers from the Preds. That, of course, would likely force Nashville’s hand on a trade.

continued plus other NHL names in the news…

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

Comments

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I understand his confusion. Weber’s thinking about winning. In that context, Suter’s just picked a team that, even with Parise, has less of a chance of winning than the one he just left. No surprise Weber would be scratching his head.

What Weber needs to realize is Suter isn’t thinking about winning. He is thinking about 1) money and 2) how neat it would be for his fiance to go spend that money with some other guy’s fiance in the place the two future wives grew up in.

Posted by larry from pitt on 07/05/12 at 04:48 PM ET

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What Weber needs to realize is Suter isn’t thinking about winning.

And you know this how?  Minnesota might not be an immediate Cup contender but there’s a strong group of talent that’s about to hit the NHL for the Wild that could make them contenders for years to come.  Plus, Heatley’s deal comes off the books in 2 years.  Remember that Parise and Suter didn’t sign for 2 or 3 years they signed for 13, so a team that could have a wide window within those 13 years would be appealing.  Was winning the one and only priority for both players?  I don’t think so, but they’re going to be spending 13 years in a market they both have connections to with a team that could be pretty good in the very near future.  It’s not like they sacrificed any and all chances of winning just to take a couple million dollars more.

Posted by RoneFace on 07/05/12 at 07:15 PM ET

HockeyFanOhio's avatar

I’d take Weber.  Would have preferred Suter but Weber would be a big help.

Posted by HockeyFanOhio from Central Ohio on 07/05/12 at 07:34 PM ET

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And you know this how?

He signed with a team that’s worse with him than the one he left is without him.

And please with the unproven rookies Everyone thinks their draft picks will develop into impact players. Almost none of them do. It’s not like the Wild have a 19 year old Alex Ovechkin sitting in the minors waiting for Suter to sign. There’s nothing at this point to distinguish Shiefele or Granlund from Turris and Brendl until the second they prove there is.

“In 3 years there’s a chance that my new team will be as good as my old team is without me” is not the mentality of a guy who cares about winning first.

Posted by larry from pitt on 07/05/12 at 07:46 PM ET

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“In 3 years there’s a chance that my new team will be as good as my old team is without me” is not the mentality of a guy who cares about winning first.

If you read the comment I never said winning was the only priority.  My point was that Suter didn’t sign with the Blue Jackets, a team with awful management that’s in complete disarray.  He signed with a team that has a solid goalie, Parise, Koivu, and some solid prospects who should be ready to contribute sooner rather than later.  There’s not a team in the league in the new salary cap era that will be a sure bet to compete for a Stanley Cup for 13 years.  If you accept that then you’re looking for a place you’d want to live and a team that has a good chance to be competitive for as many of those 13 years as possible.  In that light I don’t find the decisions all that surprising and I don’t think it was all about the money.  I mean getting an extra 10% spread out over 13 years isn’t really that big of a motivator, especially with the amount of money involved.

By the way, I am not a Wild fan, don’t know a ton about those prospects, and have no vested interest in outcome.  No prospect is a sure thing but the consensus I’ve read seems to be that some of those kids have a chance to be pretty good. 

I really thought Nashville was going to come out of the west last year and I agree that the Preds, especially with Suter, would have been poised to be very good in 2012-2013 but with Weber potentially hitting UFA after the season Suter had no idea what the future would hold for the franchise.  What if he had signed there with Poile assuring him they’d do everything to keep Weber, only to see Weber refuse to sign an extension and walk away?  Pure speculation but I think the only way Suter was going to stay in Nashville was if Weber was signed to a long term extension, and the only way Weber would have been open to a long term extension now was if Suter had signed one.  Honestly don’t know what Nashville could have done differently or come out of this situation with both players.

Posted by RoneFace on 07/05/12 at 08:07 PM ET

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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.

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