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Where are the Offer Sheets?

From Adam Kimelman at NHL.com:

What general manager wouldn’t want to see Steven Stamkos centering his first line? Or Drew Doughty or Keith Yandle patrolling his blue line? Those players, and other emerging stars, are available for all 30 teams.

So why aren’t they getting any offers?

Because those players, and others like them, are restricted free agents, meaning their current team reserves the right to match any offer that player receives.

Since the summer of 2005, only six restricted free agents have been signed to offer sheets, most recently last year, when the San Jose Sharks signed Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson to a four-year, $14 million deal. Of those six offers, five were matched; the exception was Dustin Penner, who left the Anaheim Ducks for the Edmonton Oilers and a five-year, $21 million contract in the summer of 2007. The Ducks received first-, second- and third-round picks from the Oilers in the 2008 Entry Draft as compensation.

Why the lack of offer sheets?


Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: offer+sheets, salary+cap



There’s no offer sheets because the NHL is a good ol’ boy’s league.  Basically, if you sign my RFA today, We’ll get you back tomorrow when you’re guy is ready to be poached.  There’s even an unconfirmed rumor that PHI’s GM was all about the offer sheet to Stamkos until several other GM’s called him to make sure he knew the future ramifications; once you walk down that path…

Wait and see what Chicago (and others) does to the Sharks next season when Couture is up for resigning.  This is why the RFA rule does not work.

Posted by RWFan from Michigan on 07/05/11 at 06:15 PM ET

clownfat's avatar

So you are suggesting it is a good ol’ boys league but somehow Paul Holmgren didn’t know that already? He has been in coaching/management since 1987, not to mention the decade he played in the league. I find that harder to believe than the concept that the league has these unwritten rules you are suggesting they have.

Posted by clownfat on 07/05/11 at 06:56 PM ET


I don’t know about Holmgren, but mark me down in the ‘lack of offer-sheets reeks of good ‘ol boys scratching each others’ backs’

The only other reasons I can think of to not offer-sheet Stamkos are lack of need at his position (Pittsburgh, Detroit, LA, a few others) or lack of capspace (Wash, others). That still leaves at least a dozen teams with the need for a player like him, the money to offer and no other way to acquire a someone like that. It’s not like all these teams will be drafting 50 goal capable centers with those picks.

The lack of offer sheets for Doughty is just as puzzling. I’d feel a lot more comfortable giving up 2 1st rounders an 7.5 million for Doughty than 6 million and no 1st rounders for someone like Wisniewski.

Posted by steviesteve on 07/05/11 at 07:24 PM ET


Could it be that offers have been made but players aren’t signing them?

Posted by Tikan on 07/05/11 at 08:09 PM ET


That’s possible. If I’m Doughty, an extra $1mm/y isn’t really worth the risk of ending up Garth Snow’s property, for instance.

Posted by steviesteve on 07/05/11 at 08:16 PM ET


Important part: offer sheets increase cost of RFAs for everyone.

Posted by Davor on 07/06/11 at 04:03 AM 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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