Red and Black Hockey
by David Lee on 07/13/11 at 08:16 PM ET
On Wednesday afternoon, the Carolina Hurricanes and alternate captain Brandon Sutter finally came to an agreement. For weeks, the media has been telling us “the deal could be done as soon as today”, and today, the waiting finally ended.
As everyone expected, the deal is for three years. As everyone except me expected, the deal is for a hit of just a skosh over $2M. I was wildly speculating that he would earn over $3M per season, and this is a pretty good deal. The three year deal will pay a total of $6.2M, starting with $1.5 in 2011-12, followed by $2M, then finally $2.7M in 2013-14.
Suttsy tallied 29 (14/15) points in the 2010-11 season, which was considerably down from the 40 (21/19) the previous season. Although he played in every game, he was playing through injuries all season long. Despite a dip in offensive stats, he still did a lot of the leadership things that he needed to do. He led all Canes forwards in blocked shots with 73. He led all Canes forwards in penalty killing ice time with 2:21 per game. His faceoff winning percentage of 44.3% wasn’t quite as good as we were expecting, but that may or may not have anything to do with the bumps and bruises that the was dealing with.
The cap hit of $2.07M is considerably less than what I was anticipating, so I’m quite pleased. I think it’ll be viewed as an incredible bargain. He should again reach the 20-goal plateau and should be the faceoff winning percentage leader. That’s something that Eric Staal still hasn’t added to his game, and it’s really frustrating.
When Tim Brent signed with the Canes this month, I compared his shot blocking and penalty killing to Brandon Sutter. It’s great to have two of these lunch-pail guys. Sutter, though, is a guy who can and will score 20 goals.
I still say that Tim Brent is going to be a fan favorite. He certainly was in Toronto and he’s already in the hearts of Canes fans three months before the season starts.
Anyway, this is good news for Canes fans. It should be the end of signings for the Hurricanes, although they still have some housework to do for Charlotte.
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About Red and Black Hockey
David Lee is a restaurant manager with an unused degree in political science. He can be found at Carolina Hurricanes games, Scrabble tournaments and indie-rock shows. Sometimes, all in the same day.