Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: contracts
From Justin Bourne at Puck Daddy:
After July 1, there’s a slow and steady trickledown effect in pro hockey, and it’s not as simple as “sign the best available player, then the next best available player, then the….”
“Next best available player” gets a little blurry when one guy is 26 and played for El Mira and the other is 23 and skated with Victoria. Sometimes you need to get them on the same ice to compare.
NHL teams are set in stone (well, 97 percent anyway) before a single player shows up to camp, but at the AHL and ECHL levels, it can work a little differently.
Lower down in the system, you have a better chance of actually taking someone’s spot, especially if they aren’t some prized prospect.
more about job hunting for the “free-agent stragglers”
*I accidentally credited this story to “Jason Bourne” when this first went online. Apologies. The blame belongs fully to Robert Ludlum…
News today, via the wonderful Habsinsideout and Radio Canada, that Andrei Markov’s agent Don Meehan confirms no discussions have taken place on a Markov contract extension. Markov’s contract is due to expire at the end of the 2010-2011 season. More on that here:
Markov Talks Yet to Begin (French)
So no Andrei Markov talks, no news regarding a Carey Price contact – what exactly is Pierre Gauthier doing? My guess is that the Canadiens GM is heavily wrapped up in the Price negotiations, which may be going sideways. Consider some of the other restricted free agents currently without contracts for the coming season: Sam Gagner, Christ Stewart, Peter Mueller, Bobby Ryan, James Neal. The list goes on. These are all impact players, potential stars in some cases, younger than 23, and none of them have a contract with training camps a mere three weeks away. That’s not normal.
Another brief update on Carey Price today, with more discussion of his off-season rodeo habits - and a pretty snazzy picture of Mr. Price lassoing from atop a horse.
Now word that the Canadiens are in fact none to pleased with Mr. Price’s penchant for his horse habits, and while they softened their stance to allow his participation in a competition a week ago (as discussed on Kukla’s Korner) they are not enamoured with his choice of off-season training (scoop credit to Ron Reush of TheReushBlog).
So, what do fans think, Habs and otherwise: should NHL teams be able to mandate the off-season activities of their players? How about when they are not technically under contract, like Mr. Price? While the players are assets, and teams must protect their well being, they are also individuals with hobbies and interests.
How specifically should NHL teams be able to dictate the activities of their players?
Marian Gaborik’s agent, Ron Salcer (via the Pioneer Press):
“I can tell you that no decision (about free agency) has been made, and that he’s not even thinking about it. He’s focused on coming in and having a great season. If you start talking about next year, I think you’re getting ahead of yourself.
“We’re not going to deny anything the Wild wants to explore. We’re certainly willing to listen, but at this point it’s a hypothetical because I haven’t heard from them.”
“I can only say the Wild went to speak to him and were very respectful and shared information with him, about himself and the organization, and their vision. I think it was a very intelligent move on their behalf to involve him, but we don’t have any set plans (to talk).”
From Lyle Richardson at The Hockey News,
GM Paul Holmgren would like to re-sign restricted free agents Jeff Carter, R.J. Umberger and Randy Jones, but with over $47 million already committed to next year’s payroll, Holmgren probably won’t have enough cap space to retain the three even though the upper limit is expected to rise to around $56 million next season.
Holmgren also has to consider whether to retain any of his unrestricted free agents. Vaclav Prospal, Jason Smith, Jaroslav Modry and Jim Dowd fall into that category and if speculation in the Philadelphia media is anything to go by, Holmgren will cut those players loose and focus on re-signing his younger talent.
But not retaining his impending UFAs won’t solve Holmgren’s cap problem; he’s going to have to consider other options.
more… plus a look at the Dallas Stars
From Ken Campbell at The Hockey News,
If the player who is under contract decides he simply doesn’t feel like playing – the way Niedermayer did last fall – he can simply kick up his heels and sit out for as long as he wants. The team has no recourse except to suspend the player. But here’s where it gets really silly.
The moment the player decides he wants to come back and play, the team must lift the suspension, reactivate him and start paying him according to the terms of his contract – as long as he decides to return before the trade deadline when rosters must be set.
It’s another classic example of how the players, who were supposedly clobbered in the last round of CBA negotiations, continue to hold an inordinate amount of power. After holding a team to a commitment by signing a contract, the player then decides if and when he wants to come back.
From the Dallas Stars:
The Dallas Stars announced today that the club has re-signed center Steve Ott to a two-year contract worth $2.85 million ($1.35 million in ’08-09 and $1.5 million in ’09-10) through the 2009-10 season. Ott’s current contract was set to expire on June 30, 2008.
“Steve Ott has done a great job of earning this contract and we are very pleased to have him secure in Dallas for the next two years,” said Co-General Manager Les Jackson. “He has developed into a valuable piece in our team chemistry and he brings a solid work ethic to our hockey club day in and day out.”
From the Edmonton Oilers,
The Edmonton Oilers have signed Tom Gilbert to a six-year contract that will keep the 25-year-old defenceman with the team through the 2013-14 season.
The 6’3”, 210-pound native of Bloomington, Minnesota enjoyed an outstanding rookie season with the Oilers in 2007-08. One of five Oilers to appear in all 82 games, Gilbert finished eighth on the Edmonton scoring list and first among defencemen with 13 goals and 20 assists for 33 points.
And from TSN: “It is a 6-year deal at approximately $4-million per season.”
Update 8:10pm ET: And more added by TSN, Robert Nilsson was also signed. Here is the breakdown:
Gilbert’s new pact will pay him $24 million over six years, while Nilsson signed a three-year, $5.5 million contract.
Gilbert will earn $3.5 million next season with a $1.5 million signing bonus, $3.5 million in 2009-2010, $5.5 million with a $1.5 million signing bonus in 2010-2011, $5 million in 2011-2012, $3.5 million in 2012-2013, and $3 million in 2013-2014 for a salary cap average of $4 million a season.
Nilsson will earn $1.5 million next season and $2 million in each remaining season.
*hat-tip to rinkrat for noting the deal in the KK Forum
From Arthur Staple at Newsday,
Sean Avery broke his three-week media blackout Monday, long enough to tell reporters after Rangers practice that he had broken off contract talks with the Rangers and that he seemed resigned to the fact that he’ll be playing elsewhere next season.
“I don’t think the value of what I’m worth has changed from the start of the season to right now,” Avery said. “I certainly love playing for the Rangers, no question about it. I’d say that window (of signing a long-term deal with the team) is probably not as open as it has been in the past.”
Avery, who is believed to be seeking a multi-year deal worth more than $2.5-million a season, said he’s been playing his best hockey “probably since I’ve been in the league” over the last 11 games, during which time he has seven goals and three assists.
Update 5:44pm ET: Some analysis on the Avery situation from Steve Zipay, also at Newsday
From John Glennon’s blog at The Tennessean,
Over the past couple of months, the Predators have signed David Legwand to a six-year contract, Jordin Tootoo to a two-year contract and forward J.P. Dumont to a four-year contract. It’s time to show a little commitment to the organization’s coaches and scouting staff as well.
Predators general manager David Poile has already said new contracts are in the works for Barry Trotz and company, but it’s not clear yet what length the deals will be. The coaches have become accustomed to working on one-year pacts (they’re doing it again this season), but they deserve a little more security.
From Howard Berger at the National Post,
Tucker has a no-trade provision in the four-year, US$12-million extension he signed last March, and he has been evasive when answering questions from reporters about his willingness to waive the clause. But, after the Leafs’ morning skate at Montreal’s Bell Centre on Thursday, Tucker opened up a bit, and he sounded like a man who is firmly entrenched in Toronto. “I believe in the organization and playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs,” he said. “I signed here last year to stay. At that particular time in my career, I could have taken the option to explore free agency and I didn’t. Not only have the Maple Leafs been good to me, but I think my allegiance to this team has shown in the last eight years.” When asked about the prospect of changing his mind before Feb. 26, Tucker replied, “I don’t see myself changing that philosophy.”
From Scott Morrison at CBC,
And missing the playoffs this year will hurt worse than any other season.
That is because, of course, the Oilers are not in possession of their first-round draft pick this spring. In fact, they surrendered their first three picks in the summer to the Anaheim Ducks as compensation when they signed restricted free-agent Dustin Penner, which was ultimately a reaction to Nylander changing his mind and signing with the Washington Capitals, missing out on other free agents as a result, and then watching the Buffalo Sabres match an offer sheet given to winger Thomas Vanek.
It is called dominoes, Oilers style.
more of a look at what direction the Oilers might take now
From John Glennon at the Tennessean,
Said Dumont: “The contract stuff is not really in my hands. We would definitely like to stay here, but we’ll see. If it happens, it happens. Hopefully it will.’‘
The only question regarding a re-signing of Dumont would be money. The Predators already have some relatively large salaries on the books for next season — Jason Arnott ($4.5 million), Legwand ($4.5 million), Steve Sullivan ($3.2 million), Marek Zidlicky ($3.2 million) and Chris Mason ($3 million).
Assuming Poile still plans to re-sign the key restricted free agents, will Dumont’s next salary fit the budget? Dumont is paid $2.5 million, but after posting a career-best 66 points last season and assuming he stays on course for 60 points this season, he’ll be due more money in the future.
*Nashville’s current salary cap situation.
From Jeff Marek at CBC,
As much as it’s been a slow year for trades building buzz for the NHL, you can’t say the same for contracts.
As the CBA and the salary cap have made swapping players challenging if not impossible at times Edmonton general manager Kevin Lowe’s offer-sheet summer made all 29 other GMs in the league snap to attention and make sure their young talent is locked up long term.
continued… Marek takes a comparison look at contracts yet to be signed. Players like Dion Phaneuf, Shea Weber, Andrei Meszaros and Brent Burns, and what their values might be.
From Michael Russo at the Star-Tribune,
“If somebody’s going to sign Butch to an offer sheet, I doubt it would be for 5 percent more than [his $2.6 million salary],” Lynn said. “In fact, that might be a favor for us. So let’s assume it would be a huge bonus to what he’s making this year. The field narrows pretty quickly, and then of those few, they’d have to be willing and able to do so.”
Of course, if Bouchard is in the Wild’s long-term plans, the team will eventually have to pony up anyway. After all, Bouchard can become an unrestricted free agent in July 2009. So why not pay now?
“If oil’s $100 a barrel, would you rush out now and buy as much as you can if you know there’s a good chance it won’t get worse?” Lynn said. “Or, would you wait and see if it goes down to $70 or $80 a barrel? You could always spend $100 a barrel three months from now.”
From Ted Leonsis of the Washington Capitals,
No mention of our team can pass, it seems, without noting Alex Ovechkin’s contract status, and I can tell from postings in the blogosphere and message boards that this has a lot of fans worried. I respect Alex and George McPhee’s commitment to keep the negotiations out of the media and frankly have wondered who is making up some of the things I have read. As I have stated on numerous occasions, we couldn’t be more impressed with Alex as a player and a person and we expect him to be in D.C. for a long, long time.
I don’t have much to add, but want to say this: We love Alex Ovechkin.
lots more… on the Caps, from prospects to television revenues to logos
Update 4pm ET: Yesterday, Leonsis discussed this same issue on XM Radio. Interview mp3 can be downloaded here.
from Rand Simon of the Hockey News,
If Alfredsson does play under his contract through 2011-12, he will have earned a total of $26.6 million in salary (less any escrow) over the seven seasons since the lockout. Without the 24 per cent rollback, Alfredsson would have received $35 million during that time frame. So, including the $5 million lost from the 2004-05 season, the lockout cost Alfredsson $13.4 million in salary.
On top of that, Alfredsson has signing bonus payments in his contract and the lost rolled back amount is another $1.155 million.
In total, Alfredsson is potentially down more than $14.5 million. To make matters worse, it is worth pointing out that in August 2004 Alfredsson was getting $1.31 Canadian for every U.S. dollar earned and not the 98 or 99 cents he gets today.