Market watch

Paul Stastny: five years, $33 million

Gifted player, but that’s another crazy second contract. Stastny’s entry-level deal pays him $710,000 this year.

Do you envy Bob Gainey sitting down with the agent representing Mike Komisarek and Christopher Higgins?

• In the Delaware County Daily Times, Anthony Sanfilippo praises Paul Holmgren for another steal: Matt Carle

• Marc De Foy in the Journal de Montréal on the Canadiens’  power-play woes

• Thanks, nightmare_49, for this link to a skeptical look at Carey Price from Canes Country

• And ESPN’s Scott Burnside asks:

Speaking of goalies, how do you feel about the Montreal goaltending situation?
Honestly, slightly uneasy. There is no disputing that sophomore Carey Price is a world talent. But over the past week or so, the Canadiens have proven with a series of erratic performances that they’re not going to run away with the Eastern Conference. Moreover, the up-and-down play of Price — whose goals allowed over the past four starts look like this: 2, 6, 0, 6 — begs the question whether GM Bob Gainey isn’t headed down the same path that cost the Canadiens a trip to the Eastern Conference final a year ago.
You’ll recall that after trading Cristobal Huet to Washington at last year’s trade deadline, Gainey turned over the goaltending duties to two untested rookies, Price and Jaroslav Halak. In the end, that move cost the Habs, as Price wobbled at the end of the first round against Boston and then collapsed in a five-game series loss to Philadelphia. Price is still putting up solid numbers (he’s 8-3-1 with a .915 save percentage and 2.61 GAA), and the Habs are still near the top of the Eastern Conference standings.

But the bottom line is the Canadiens’ goaltending lineup lacked a veteran presence this spring, and there’s no reason to think it won’t lack that same presence next spring. That’s why we’d keep our eyes on guys like veteran netminder Dwayne Roloson, who might look in a Canadiens jersey, or Nikolai Khabibulin, or Manny Fernandez, although that’s not going to happen given that the Bruins and Habs are division-mates. Still, food for thought, no?


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Market watch

 Minnesota Wild and Pierre-Marc Bouchard have avoided arbitration – and the Wild have locked up a talented young player who would have been eligible for unrestricted free agency next summer.

Bouchard, 24, has signed a five year, $20.4 million deal that breaks down to  $3.35 million this season, $4.25 million the following three seasons and $4.3 million in 2012-13.

Bouchard scored 11 goals, added 50 assists and made $2.6 million last season.

It is thought that his long-term signing improves the Wild’s chances of retaining Marian Gaborik.

• The dollar figures on Marek Svatos’s two-year deal in Colorado: $1.75 million this season (very reasonable for a 26-goal scorer) and $2.35 million in 2009-’10.

• Boston made it official today, buying out Glen Murray’s $4.15 contract. Doing so reduces the Bruins’ cap hit on Murray to $700,000-something this season. He’s now a UFA.

 


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Market watch

Pavol Demitra to Vancouver: two years, $8 million.

Canucks are $10 million under the cap  and still a player in the Sundin sweepstakes.

HockeyBuzz says Canadiens’ Plan B is Patrick Marleau.


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Market watch

RFA Matt Stajan stays with the Leafs: two years, $3.5 million.

The Leafs’ second-round pick in 2002 scored 16 goals, 17 assists while making $950,000 last season.

 

 


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Market watch

UFA Owen Nolan signs with Minnesota: two years at $2.75 million per.

Drafted first overall by Quebec in 1990, Nolan, 36, has played for the Nordiques, Colrado, San Jose, Toronto, Phoenix and Calgary. He’s been an All-Star five times, most recently in 2002.

Nolan made $1.75 million last season while scoring 16 goals and adding 16 assists for the Flames.

To the extent that the exuberant Alexander Ovechkin always looks like he’s having fun playing hockey, Nolan – the only NHL player born in Belfast – is exacty the opposite, a player whose mien is that of a s–t salesman with a mouth full of samples.

 


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Market watch

Craig Rivet and a seventh-round pick in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft to Buffalo for second-round picks in the 2009 and 2010 drafts.

Eighteen months ago, Rivet was worth Josh Gorges and the first-round choice that turned out to be Max Pacioretty.

•  •  •

Steve Bernier, acquired by Buffalo in the trade that sent rent-a-player Brian Campbell to San Jose, has been shipped to Vancouver  for a second round draft pick in 2010 and a third round pick in 2009.


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Market watch

Jaromir Jagr has reportedly signed with Avangard Omsk of whatever they’re calling that Russian league, the club he played for during the lockout season.

Three years, $35 million … and in contrast to socialist countries like the U.S. and Canada, no taxes. This will please a guy who has had problems with the IRS.

The lack of casinos in Omsk may not please Jagr, but that’s another story.

A slam-dunk, first-ballot Hall of Famer, Jagr has won five Art Ross trophies, three Lester B. Pearsons (players’ MVP) and a Hart. He’s been a first-team All-Star seven times.

Jagr comes from Kladno, a small city in the Czech Republic that cranks out hockey players, including Tomas Plekanec.

Arguably the greatest European player in the history of the league, Jagr indisputably had the greatest hair of the 1990s.

At 36, Jagr’s best days are behind him. But he’s still got some game, and that big body and Jennifer Lopez ass make him hard to move off the puck.

Ironic that Jagr is off to play in Russia. As an NHLer, he wore number 68 in memory of the Prague Spring of 1968, the year his dissident grandfather died in prison.

Times change, however. And most people sell out their idealism for a lot less than $35 million.

 


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Market watch

 Sean Avery to Dallas: Four years, $16 million.

•  •  •

Dealt to Carolina for Erik Cole yesterday, Joni Pitkanen signed a new contract with the Hurricanes today.

Three years, $12 million: $3.5 million, $4 million, $4.5 million.

Pitkanen, who will be 25 in September, was Philadelphia’s first-round pick, fourth overall in 2002. He was dealt to Edmonton last summer in the trade that brought Jason Smith and Joffrey Lupul to the Flyers.

Pitkanen played a shade over 24 minutes a game last season, second on the Oilers to Sheldon Souray. He was making $2.4 million.

•  •  •

Marian Hossa.

WTF?


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Market watch

Buffalo has signed Paul Gaustad to a four year contract worth $9.2 million. A seventh-round draft choice in 2000 who has developed into a decent physical forward (his 85 PiM were second only to Andrew Peters on the Sabres) who scores once in a while (10 goals, 26 assists), Gaustad will earn $1.7 million this season and $2.5 million in the next three years of his contract.

Gaustad made $750,000 last season and would have become a RFA tomorrow.

• Detroit has signed Andreas Lilja to a two-year contract at $2.5 million per – a raise of $1.5 million over what he was making. Lilja was eligible to become a UFA tomorrow.


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Market Watch

Florida Panthers have re-upped forward Rostislav Olesz, 21, who would have become an RFA tomorrow.

Sources told TSN it’s a six-year, $18.75 million deal with an annual salary cap hit of $3.125 million.

Olesz, picked 7th overall in the 2004 draft by the Panthers, was hampered by a hand injury most
of the season. He ended up with 14 goals, 12 assists and 26 points in 56
games while earning $984,000.

 


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Market watch

RDS reports Ryan Malone will sign with Tampa Bay, which obtained his rights from Pittsburgh on Friday..

Seven years. $31.5 million. That’s $4.5 million per but is probably front-loaded to make a buyout cheaper at the end of the contract, when a guy who plays like Malone will be barely able to walk (see BERTUZZI, Todd).

Malone, who was born in the city he’s left, will be 29 in December. At 6’4 and 224 pounds, the son of former NHLers Greg Malone is the proptype of a rare and highly desirable breed in the NHL: the power forward.

He scored 24 goals, added 27 assists and was plus-14 – all career bests, in his UFA season – and added six goals and about five nose fractures in the playoffs.

Malone made $1.45 million in Pittsburgh. 

 

 


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Market watch

 
Calgary has locked up four potential UFAs: Daymond Langkow, former Canadien Craig Conroy, Eric Nystrom and goaltender Curtis McElhinney.

The big prize is Langkow. A first-round (5th overall) draft choice by Tampa Bay in 1995, the Edmonton native scored 30 goals and added 35 assists for the Flames in 2007-’08.

 •  •  •

Loui, Loui, oh baby, he’s not going anywhere:

The Dallas Stars have signed left wing Loui Eriksson to a two-year contract worth $3.2 million, $1.5 million in 2008-09 and $1.7 million in 2009-10.

Eriksson, 22, had 14 goals and 17 assists, both career highs, in 69 games last season. He was making $650,000.

•  •  •

Big names on the waiver wire:

Andrew Raycroft, Todd Bertuzzi.


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Market watch

Sportsnet reports Jeff Carter will re-up with the Flyers: three years, $15 million.

Carter in 2007-’08: 29 goals, 24 assists, plus-6

Andrei Kostitsyn,  chosen one spot ahead of Carter in the 2003 entry draft: 26 goals, 27 assists, plus-15


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Market watch

In an interesting piece titled Five Questions About the Draft, Mathias Brunet of La Presse speculates the Canadiens could be looking to launch their centennial season with a bang by making a big draft-day trade.

Players said to available: Olli Jokinen, Marian Gaborik, Patrick Marleau, Mike Cammalleri.

Brunet also writes that Quebec prospect Nicolas Deschamps may not be available when the Canadiens exercise their 25th-overall first-round pick.

The Bruins, picking 16th, are said to like Deschamps.

Cristobal Huet’s agent told the Washington Post negotiations with the Capitals have been "productive and well-intentioned."

Huet wants a three-year contract – which, Hello trade dealine, he never would have got from the Canadiens.

Meannwhile, the Marian Hossa soap opera has taken another turn.

Hossa’s agent, Rich Winter, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that reports the Penguins have offered $50 million to $52 million over seven years are "way off base."

"The newspaper and television reports generated so far are
completely inaccurate," Winter told the Post-Gazette. "None of the information has come
from the principles involved in the discussions. Ray Shero and I have
not spoken with anyone about a contract, so I have no idea where the
information is coming from. There is not even one basic piece of
information from those reports that are true."

Hossa made $7 million this season. He wants to stay in Pittsburgh, but
a hometown discount that involves almost no raise is ridiculous –
especially when Boston probably will offer Hossa what Pierre McGuire
says could be Daniel Brière money to reunite Hossa with his old Atlanta
linemate, Marc Savard.

 


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Market watch

Nashville has signed defenceman Ryan Suter to a four-year, $14 million contract.

In 2007-’08, Suter, 23, scored seven goals., added 24 assists and had 71 PiM – all career highs. He has played all but six of the Predators’ games over the last two seasons, averaging in excess of 20 minutes per game.

Suter’s salary was $942,000. He would have become a restricted free agent on July 1.

 


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Market watch

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review columnist Joe Starkey writes the Penguins may not be able to keep Evgeni Malkin.

With several big contracts on the books – Sidney Crosby, possibly Marian Hossa and soon Marc-André Fleury and Jordan Staal – the Penguins might have to choose which superstar to keep and which to deal.

Obvious choice. 

"Malkin’s not the one with the ‘C’ on his jersey," Starkey writes. "He’s not the one who might get a $50 million winger. He’s not the one who lives with the owner. He’s not the one who runs the power play, and he’s not the one whose job description includes saving the NHL." 

•  •  •

Minnesota general manager Doug Risebrough told the St. Paul Pioneer-Press the Wild will make Brian Rolston their top signing priority – and bid farewell to Pavol Demitra.

"The most important guy is Rolston," said Risebrough, who wants to have the veteran right winger under contract within the week so he knows how to maneuver at the NHL draft.

If Rolston doesn’t sign, the Wild could turn their attention to Demitra, but one thing is certain:

"Both are not coming back," Risebrough said. "That gets back to me deciding I need more flexibility to see what else I can do. With some risk, I might add."


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Market watch

Carolina has signed Patrick Eaves to a three-year contract that will pay him $1.1 million in 2008-’09, $1.4 million in ’09-’10 and $1.7 million in ’10-’11.

Eaves made $942,000 this season. The 24-year-old RW had 5 goals, 10 assists and was minus-2 in 37 games for Ottawa and Carolina.

Eaves had shoulder surgery in March.

His best scoring season was 2005-’06 when Eaves got 20 goals in 58 games as a rookie for the Senators. In ’06-’07 he slumped to 14 goals in 73 games for Ottawa, which dealt Eaves and Joe Corvo to the Hurricanes for Cory Stillman and Mike Commodore.


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Market watch

Dallas defenceman Trevor Daley signed a three-year, $6.9 million contract with the Stars this week.

Dallas’s second-round draft choice (43rd overall) in 2002, Daley, who’ll be 25 in October, played in all 82 games, plus playoffs, this season. He averaged 19:48 of ice time while scoring five goals and adding 19 assists. Daley had 85 PiM and was minus-1 on the season.

He’s 5-11, 207 and plays bigger. The Toronto native, who made $800,000 this season, is a good skater and puckhandler who frequently jumps up to join the Stars’ rush.

Daley’s salary – $2.1 million, $2.3 million and $2.5 million over the next three seasons – is useful as a benchmark in contemplating what the Canadiens might pay Josh Gorges, who’s a RFA on July 1 and made $495,000 this season, and Mike Komisarek, who’ll make $1.9 million for the upcoming season and become a UFA on July 1, 2009 unless Canadiens sign him to an extension. 


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Market watch

Calgary Flames have signed Dion Phaneuf to a contract extension: six years, $39 million.

Phaneuf is making $942,000 and was due to become a restricted free agent this summer.

Which begs the question …

Mike Komisarek is signed through next season. His salary is $1.5 million and will be $1.9 million in 2008-’09, after which he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

For my money – not a nickel of which will be invested in the deal – signing Komisarek long-term is the Canadiens’ biggest contract priority.

Runners-up: Tomas Plekanec, who will make $1.8 next season and become an RFA; Andrei Kostitsyn, $612,000 and an RFA this summer.

Oh, and also Mark Streit.

And Cristobal Huet.

104 Comments

  1. The Teacher says:

    cause and effect?

  2. arcosenate says:

    Apparently Atlanta is asking for Higgins, a defense prospect and a first round pick for Hossa.

    WAY TOO MUCH if that’s true.

  3. Bill H says:

    Your take on the length of contract affecting the per year value in the case of K1 is probably true. You want to lock him down, he will want more money per year. It will be interesting to see if BG tries to sign him to 3 or 4 years. Four years is a long time to be stuck with someone who doesn’t develop as anticipated. And BG is on record as preferring to not go long term.

    As for Streit, maybe you are right about signing him shorter term while other prospects develop. But who do you see in the system that is a d-man with offensive upside? I see more stay-at-home d-men.

    For the record, the stats on Streit above, there is one error. He has 9G this year, 6 are PP, not 9 as written.

  4. 24 Cups says:

    One little negative thing about Hossa is that his agent is that Winter guy. He can be a real pill so it might be difficult to work out a new contract. I’ll say one thing, we certainly would look good next year with Hossa, Kovy, SergeiK and Tom the Bomb/Dandy on right wing.

    The Original 24 Cups

  5. krob1000 says:

    I feel like a school kid crying out for attention but did anyone see my link to the Star….it says the salary cap will go up 3 million next year due to Canada’s strong dollar. This is big news folks if yuou are a “buyer”….we should be a “buyer”.

  6. likehoy says:

    gainey will not overpay any player. So we’ve got to be glad he’s the man in charge.

    he’s proved it already in the UFA market giving out 6 year contracts when everyone was asking for 7 or 8 or 10…he was giving out average 6.5-7. million salaries per year when everyone was asking for 8-9…He makes a solid pitch and he won’t give a dollar more. Souray wanted more, gainey told him bye bye. Just you watch, we’ll all be surprised by how much he’s going to save on all the RFAs. Mind you, some can go to arbitration while some don’t have a choice (no idea what the arbitrative rules are). Julien BriseBois is the head of the cap game and he’s going to fill in Gainey with all the market prices and how much they’d be worth to other teams and Gainey will find the happy medium.

    and i still find it hard to see Mike Komisarek making over 4 million. I think the big question is, how good are you without andrei markov?? Not saying Komi’s source of power is markov, but markov makes every player around him better, deservedly our highest paid player…if komi makes 5 million…does that mean he has a markov effect on the team?

    i might be mistaken, but the highest paid defensive defenseman is Scott Hannan and he’s making 4.75 million after hitting UFA. You normally get discounts at RFA cause you can’t negotiate with anyone else. Is Komisarek worth more than hannan? (mind you OV thinks hannan and markov are the toughest dmen in the league)

  7. mjames says:

    You make an excellent point. I agree.

    mjames

  8. ebk says:

    holy crap 24, looks like you are joining the dark side and starting to write those epic novels we all love. :)

    actually was an interesting read, thank for taking the time to do it.

    ps
    krobs too

  9. mjames says:

    I read through the various posts concerning Huet and our need for an experienced goalie. Several were saying that we will need to pay him something in the range of $5mm in order to retain him. What i do not understand is that while the consensus is that the goalie position is vital, goalies have no trade value or at least it seems. If they have no trade value then why do you need to pay Huet $5mm for several years. Look at Chicago, Ottawa and Toronto – they are stuck with goalies. On the other hand TB can’t find a goalie and will not trade for one given their previous misstep with Columbus. I am not sure you have to pay Huet $5mm – maybe $3mm escalating to $4mm over two years. I might even consider letting him walk and we go with Price and Halak. The latter plays lights out in the AHL and he was okay last year ath the NHL level. Also I might try to trade Huet at the deadline. If we get overwhelmed we deal if not we keep him. I am comfortable with Halak and Price. I know they lack experience but how are you going to get it unless you play.

    mjames

  10. krob1000 says:

    As for my 2.5 -3 million on K1. I think that if we want to sign him for more than 3 years that is what it will take. If we go two or three year then my number may indeed be high at 3 but the 2.5 would still be about right I’d figure as a high end. Streit my figure is high and I am not sure I’d pay it as mentioned in my other post with 24cups but I’d give it to him for a one year contract for next year and then reassess him after that. We’ll have a lot of young dmen (several with offensive upside) by that point and still be on the hook with Hammer, Komi and Markov for some big bucks so that may have to be a sacrifice in order to make the numbers work. I was just overinflating the numbers to make a point that I do believe we have room to get another big scorer and that the timing couldn’t be better.

  11. Bill H says:

    You make some good points likehoy. The figures that I posted were just thrown out for discussion. I didn’t actually research each and every UFA and RFA’s projected market value.

    You may be right about O’Byrne. I certainly liked what I saw while he was in the lineup. According to the stats I have, he played 11 games, not 3 or 4. Your comparison to Latendresse is valid. However, Latendresse is on his first contract. O’Byrne will be negotiating his second contract. If Latendresse was an RFA this year, do you really think he would sign for 925k? O’Byrne’s value will be determined though, by what he shows when he comes back, not what he did before.

    As for K1, yes, I agree. I based my prediction on Higgins, as a matter of fact. He was in roughly the same place when he signed…showing a lot of potential. But salaries have continued to go up since Pleks and Higgins signed. Imagine what other teams would offer K1 if they get a chance. I bet he could get more than $2M elsewhere. In any case, I will let you argue the point with krob, as he thought K1 could get $2.5-3.5M.

    krob: I also think your numbers for Streit may be a little high. Yes, he is important to our future but look at his numbers.

    ’05-06 48GP 2G 9A 11Pts +/- -6
    ’06-07 76GP 10G 26A 36 Pts +/- -5
    ’07-08 54GP 9G 29A 38 Pts +/- -8 (to date)

    He is a PP specialist. 9 of his goals this year are on the PP. I’m guessing that an equal proportion of his assists are from the PP. While his offensive production has been improving dramatically, his +/- shows he is a bit of a defensive liability. So I am suggesting that his bargaining position is weakened because of that. But perhaps my $2.0M is low after all.

    I’m also betting that your numbers for Huet are low. And the length of his contract will make it unpalatable for BG. That’s why I’d rather go with Halak and Price, even if they are semi-unproven.

  12. HotHabs says:

    I totally agree with you. Hossa is a playoff performer and his numbers prove it. Last year was a total wash for the entire Atlanta team. But prior to that, he had 34 points in 51 playoff games. He’s the real deal people.

    enjoying the high’s of being a Habs fan

  13. MikeMcLaren says:

    The title of this blog… “MARKETwatch” should be telling.

    What’s the oldest Wall Street rule going?

    Buy low. Sell high.

    For that reason, now is the time to lock Chris Higgins up to a long-term deal.

    Fundamentally he has everything we’ll want for years to come. I think his lack of finish right now will eventually be cured. His leadership at his young age, this team being his childhood favorite… I think the guy will be loyal and he’s still got so much upside.

    The true puzzle for GMs in the new NHL is to figure out who to lock up for a long term and then get it done for as low a dollar as possible. If you can do this while a player is under-performing and you think it’s just temporary you can look really good.

    /\\ike
    GO HABS GO!

  14. krob1000 says:

    My only real personal statement is that I just really want another offensive weapon…you know that by now…lol.

  15. nightmare_49 says:

    I read it , do i get a star.

  16. 24 Cups says:

    kRob -I tried to present the budget without an opinion other than to say that we should sign most players next year and then see what the accountant says. Personally, I could see us playing out a variety of options and be happy with any of them. Everyone seems to be having trouble trying to establish Komi’s worth so we’ll leave that up in the air. Pacioretty may or may not get a bonus but I would hope by then that he would be full time so I can see him making $875000. The young defensemen? Well that depends on Streit and we could save money if he only came back next year. I did have O’Byrne, McDonagh, and a sub down so that’s three. There really isn’t room for anymore unless of course you also want to play them at forward:-)

    The real issue comes down to Huet, Koivu, and Kovalev. I didn’t make a personal statement about them because I didn’t want to get my head bit off by other posters! Huet is a very difficult call and if we resign him it will probably have to be for three years and will impact the cap is a significant way. Koivu? We’re talking two years from now. He may be a three line centre by then or even be playing the wing. You can’t do that and make $4.5 mil a year. On the other hand, he’s our captain and I’m still bitter over what happened to our last few captains during the last 17 years. Of course, Koivu himslef may decide to move on. Kovalev? He’s signed for next year which is perfect. After that, we will see if he wants to chase one more big contract with another team or sign one and two year deals with us at market value. Who knows, maybe even take a hometown discount but I doubt it. What to do with Koivu and Kovalev at the end of next year will be very traumatic for both management and the fans.

    The Original 24 Cups

  17. likehoy says:

    prospal? the one who called brisebois a grenouille 5 years ago?? i’d pick up on him just to see them fight in the dressing room…

    TRENT HUNTER would be amazing…big hitter…but inconsistent offence…at least a 20 goal scorer…

  18. krob1000 says:

    Here are Hossa’s career playoff stats for those of you who think becasue he was a bust last year (along with the entire team including some Kovalchuk guy) it is crap. He has had some very good playoffs and one other bad year in his second season in the league. HE IS NOT A PLAYOFF NO SHOW!!! http://www.nhl.com/nhl/app?service=page&page=PlayerDetail&playerId=8466148&tab=crst

  19. likehoy says:

    o’byrne and gorges 1.5 million??
    okay gorges 1.5 mil is reasonable i suppose, but i view him class to 1 million…daneneault is making 1.75 milllion to set the bar…i don’t think gorges is an offensive contributor in any sense…

    but what has o’byrne proved at the NHL level? he played 3 or 4 games then he got hurt…big woop…he deserves 800k MAX…he’s still a rookie…3 years 800k would be sufficient for the big man…and he knows it too…latendresse is making 925k for another 2 years…that’s a comparison of a young guy with potential.

    same deal with k1…thought i agree 2 million is reasonable, he’s still a young guy/rookie, you don’t want to give your young guys big contracts or they won’t come out playing. look at how much plekanec is making..1.5 this year and 1.8 next year and higgins 1.7 then 1.9…Gainey will revisit plekanec and higgins’ contract to set the bar for k1.

  20. The Teacher says:

    Just go to Detroit and call yourself the Next Ty Cobb! You’ll have all those delegates on your side quick :P

  21. krob1000 says:

    NO RENTALS……..I have yet to see anyone on here posting about a rental even if it is Hossa…..it has always been conditional on being able to resign him and in that case I’d make the deal.

  22. Ian G Cobb says:

    You have no idea how much i feel ahead of the game now that i can read and write this year for the first time in my life. I think I.ll run for President now.!

  23. Will Longlade says:

    Don’t worry, it will never happen. Here’s why:

    Hossa is 4.5 years older than Higgins and prior to testing the free agency market or negotiating an extension with his existing or new team is 5.5 million dollars p.a. more expensive. Plus, Higgins possesses intangibles that Hossa doesn’t even come close to bringing to the table. Finally, Hossa has a history of being M.I.A. during the playoffs. During Atlanta’s early exit from the playoffs last year, he recorded a single point, was -6 and had a meagre 10 shots on goal in four games. A true dynamo? IMO, not even close.

    The Habs already have their fair share of dynamic players who play the game with passion and aplomb. Hockey is above all a team sport. You do need dynamic players to win championships, but they have to be the right dynamic players and they have to be surrounded by the right supporting cast. Team chemistry is another important consideration that can’t be overlooked. With Higgins, I’m pretty sure the Hab’s have it, w/o him, I’m pretty sure they’re not as strong in that department. Signing a player of Hossa’s ilk to an extension would also severely limit the team’s flexibility to resign its core players in the future.

    Higgins may be on the fourth line for a temporary stint. The fact that he may be moved there doesn’t affect his value to the team. Carbo is trying to help him out of his slump. I’m confident he’ll be giving the Bud’s defence all they handle tonight.

    Finally, B.G. is just too smart to give up a roster player of Higgin’s calibre for a rental player.

  24. sidhu says:

    Yep – I want to see Higgins in a Habs uniform for a long time.

  25. The Teacher says:

    That is probably because it is really slang and I don’t think they have added techie to the dictionary yet. haha!

    You’re already ahead of the game Ian!

  26. Ian G Cobb says:

    I did not see it come up red or i would have right clicked it. Must have missed it. Thanks.

  27. krob1000 says:

    Komi for 4 million tops. Streit may not be there by then and same could maybe said for Huet ( he is the wildcard in all of this). Do we really sign Kovy and Koivu for the same money they make now at that age (one ouwld sadly have to go)??. If Pacioretty made it he wouldn’t make 1.5 million. Whatr about all of our young defenseman….if they are not in our plans by 2010 we should trade one or even 2 of them now then shouldn’t we???

    Savings: 1 million (Komi) + 1.5 million Pacioretty (call up money takes care of that as he likely won’t be playing full time by then) + 4.5 million (either Huet, Kovy or Koivu as they will not all be resigned then).

    That alone leaves 7 million dollars and that is assuming we only lose one of Streit , Kovy, Koivu and Huet by the end of next year. If Higgins were in a trade that saves 3.5 million.

    Conclusion in my opinion is that there is plenty of room.

    Other possible savings (sign Streit to one year deal and lose him in 2010 as we have depth at d and affordable at that + 2.75 million

  28. The Teacher says:

    I never said Huet was a bad goalie, Ian. In fact I do like him. He reminds me a lot of Jeff Hackett, but we all know what the problem was there!

    P.S. (not to be annoying, but it’s techie)

    I only correct your posts Ian because you ask for and accept the advice, not because I’m crazy about spelling lol. Just wanted to make sure you understood that. I will cease and desist the second you ask me to :)

    cheers.

  29. 24 Cups says:

    JF – He’s already signed for that year as it will be his final year of his 3 year rookie contract. He will make the same amount next year and it includes his bonus. What a bargain.

    The Original 24 Cups

  30. Ian G Cobb says:

    Never worry about Huet Teach, you keep helping me to be a tecky and I’ll teach Huet how to shut the door.!

  31. The Teacher says:

    Likewise :)

    I believe that mortgaging the future is not a solution. Especially since we are not ailing!!

  32. the Maritimer says:

    Also, don’t forget Koivu and Kovalev’s contracts are up after next season as well, so the younger core will get priorty signing attention.

  33. the Maritimer says:

    Komisarek won’t command the same money as Phaneuf. He doesn’t match up in the offensive skills area. Phaneuf gets big power play time. Komisarek will get good money, I’d say in the 4.0 – 4.5 million range for at least 5 years. I remember Bob saying he doesn’t like a long, long term deal.

    As for the others Mike mentions, they will all get there due. Gainey knows full well the value of each one.

    Let’s hope for a Leaf butt kicking tonight folks!

  34. sidhu says:

    Totally agree, Teach – we’d be in good shape with either Vinny or Hunter in the lineup. I’m glad that fans like you are thinking about quality players who aren’t on the usual trade deadline radar.

  35. The Teacher says:

    Yes, but we have to think of the long-term repercussions. Signing huet limits our ability to sign our pending RFA and possibly any UFA that we might want to take a shot at.

    As far as I know, Huet has never made it past the second round of the playoffs.

  36. gfunkdoc says:

    I like Price and Halak. But, neither of them has played 20 games in the show yet. That’s one serious reason it would be nice to keep Huet.

  37. JF says:

    Your salary for Sergei K in 2009 seems way too low.

  38. Bill H says:

    Okay, based on the numbers in my previous post, I want to take it to the next step, which is pure speculation on my part. Again, with the trade deadline approaching, it appears that the situation will change with regard to cap space.

    Assuming we drop:
    Ryder, Brisbois, Locke, Smolinski

    We then try to resign the following:

    K1————-$2.0M
    Lapierre——-$0.9M
    Grabs———-$0.7M
    Streit———$2.0M
    Gorges———$1.5M
    O’Byrne——–$1.5M
    Huet———–$4.5M
    Halak———-$1.5M

    Total Cap Hit: $14.6M
    Total Cap Space Available: $19.217M

    Of course, I am not even trying to consider length of contract here. I’m just working with possible salary cap numbers for next season.

    That would leave $4.617M to sign replacements or go for that missing piece of the puzzle, perhaps a big centre, either before the trade deadline, or in the offseason.

    And one other thing to consider. If we didn’t sign Huet, we would have an additional $4.5M to work with. That could go to additional players or to topping up the estimates I have made on the cost to resign current players.

  39. Blitzen says:

    Although it would be nice to retain Huet, I don’t think Bob will pay big bucks for him. Huet has been very good recently but remember that he had a long stretch of games where he was giving up one bad goal per. Halak has played very well when in the NHL and I’m thinking he would be happy with a substantial pay raise (that would still not rival what Huet will want) to split games with Price next year. With the money we save, we can begin to sign some of the other pieces. I don’t think Huet will be traded…he will just walk away next year.

  40. 24 Cups says:

    I tried to draw up a budget for the Habs for the 2009-10 season. This would be when all of our young players have been resigned and I also made the assumption that we would retain Huet, Koivu, and Kovalev. I did it by position and left one spot open for a UFA at right wing. I did not include a salary for that person. Obviously, I had to guess at many future salaries but I tried to be as realistic as I could. Some players’ salaries are already signed and accounted for and I gave some of the rookies a typical bonus based on what young players have been getting since the lockout.

    Koivu – 4.75 mil
    Pleks – 4.0
    Chipchura – 1.5
    Lapierre – 1.5

    Higgins – 3.5
    Lats – 1.5
    Andrei K – 3.0
    Pacioretty – 1.5

    Kovalev – 4.5
    Sergi K – .875
    Hamilton callup – .800
    UFA – no salary

    Markov – 5.75
    Hamrlik – 5.5
    Komi – 5.0
    Streit – 2.75
    O’Byrne – 1.0
    McDonagh – 1.325

    Huet – 4.5
    Price – 2.2

    Subs – 3 x .800 = 2.4

    That gives us a budget of around $58 mil. Next year’s cap is going up about $3 mil so why don’t we add that for the next year as well. So the NHL cap for 2009-10 might be around $57 to $58 mil. This budget totals around $58 mil AND there is no salary for the UFA right winger or any wiggle room. What’s my point? Well I really don’t have one but I thought somebody should draw up a sample budget to see if what we want is equal to what we can afford. Personally, I would like to see us sign all of our players at the end of next year (which is crunch time for us) and then see what’s left over in terms of chasing a UFA.

    The Original 24 Cups

  41. Xtrahabsfan says:

    6.5 mil a year for Phaneuf,lol and to think some of you slammed me for saying Huet’s agent was going to ask 5-5.5 mil.Not so far off anymore ,eh. So biased on all this input ,the real question is who do we keep and who do we ship out???I’ll start…trade Ryder to cowtown for Dion straight across and save the flames 6 mil a year cause Ryder’s worth has gone down too $500,000 and a bag of frozen vulcanized pucks!I would also like to mention to all those Ryder fans who are upset at me I’ll let you in on a little secret bout myself…I’ll be lucky to make $30.000 this year roofing and that is as well a very dangerous sport.

  42. krob1000 says:

    Kosty sr 2.5 – 3.5 million (
    lapierre 1 – 1.2 million
    Streit 3 million (or bye bye)
    Gorges 1.5 million (if he is still with us)
    O ‘Byrne 1.3- 1.5 (if he does well this year)

    Grabovski and Locke would take minimal contracts if either ever were to crack the squad……unlikely

    If it is Halak an 850,000 ball park
    If it is Huet 3.75 – 4.25 million or bye bye

  43. bigjames says:

    Kung Hei Fat Choi from Hong Kong. Happy Chinese New Year! wishing all habs fans prosperity in the form of silverware at the end of the season. Hope the year of the Rat brings us lots of wins and glory to our great team.
    Habs Forever
    Big James, Hong Kong’s biggest Habs fan!

  44. Will Longlade says:

    This underscores the notion that (the Habs) trading for and signing someone like Hossa to an extension just ain’t gonna happen. Some of the ideas that are being thrown around other threads on this site are pure fantasyland. I trust Bob Mackenzie. Eklund, on the other hand, has his own agenda. One which is clearly driven by his own commercial interests.

  45. mjames says:

    I like that idea.

    mjames

  46. The Teacher says:

    Hmm, both good players to acquire for the stretch run. Both are big bodies. However I say Prospal because he has some nastiness to him (according to TSN) and could provide Koivu with some more space. I also think Prospal’s offensive talents are greater. But good suggestion if we can’t get one, get the other. Would cost us a lot less in return I imagine then to go get Tanguay, Jokinen or Hossa.

  47. Bill H says:

    I’m doing some tinkering with numbers and offer this as food for thought:

    Estimated Cap Allowed 08/09———-$53.3M
    Total Salaries Committed 08/09——-$34.083M

    Players at end of contract 08/09 (07/08 Cap hit):
    Ryder——UFA (2.95)
    Smokes—–UFA (2.0)
    K1———RFA (.785)
    Lapierre—RFA (.387)
    Grabs——RFA (.224)
    Locke——RFA (.016)
    Brisbois—UFA (1.4)
    Streit—–UFA (.6)
    Gorges—–RFA (.495)
    O’Byrne—-RFA (.406)
    Huet——-UFA (2.875)
    Halak——RFA (.268)
    Other———-(1.045)

    Estimated cap space to sign players to complete team: $19.217M

    Players unlikely to be resigned:
    Ryder
    Smokes
    Brisbois

    One question for consideration:
    With about $19.21M of cap space in 08/09 season, how much can we afford to offer the individual UFAs and RFAs that need to be resigned? The number may change with trades before deadline.

  48. sidhu says:

    I’d look into Trent Hunter

  49. The Teacher says:

    Hahaha sidhu you’re a genius!!!

  50. The Teacher says:

    I think Vaclav Prospal is a MUCH BETTER fit.

  51. sidhu says:

    This will work!

  52. mjames says:

    Has anyone heard of the Alex Tanguay for Ryder and O’Bryne rumor? Apparently a radio in Montreal (CKAS 780) mentioned it.

    mjames

  53. doug says:

    Would like to keep Kovalev if he repeats his performance of this year for half of next season. he’s worth the dough. Unfortunately time may have caught up with Koivu, who i think is second to none as a person.

  54. The Teacher says:

    It IS a good point.

  55. doug says:

    good point; hadn’t been thinking that way. thanks.

  56. ebk says:

    Halak will either be in the NHL next year or in the Russian Super League

  57. doug says:

    He IS too good to be sitting in the minors.

  58. doug says:

    Agree; I’m proud of that guy. He’s a winner and I feel bad about the circumstances. He’s like a younger Huet – nothing but excellent track record on his resume, but what’s lacking is that “he’s going to be a superstar” piece that price/dipietro/luongo all have. It’s too bad the way people are brought in with a perception they will be the starter from day one and not given enough opportunity to build into that role. That reputation goes with you for life (e.g., Tim Thomas, who could stand on his head but is still perceived to be not a great goalie by the pundits for whatever reason).

    Halak is a potential Vokoun; he will be in the limelight one day, hopefully in the NHL and not at our peril (i.e. playing for an Eastern Conference rival), and with some return in terms of draft picks or minor league talent. File under: too bad.

  59. The Teacher says:

    You’re asking the wrong person.

  60. coutNY says:

    We should still be able to end it on our end?

  61. The Teacher says:

    So, should Vaclav Prospal be a name we should be looking into?

  62. The Teacher says:

    Hahaha, yeah but it is so different from the usual it’s a shock to the eyes lol

  63. The Teacher says:

    the problem is, once you replied directly to him, he lost the chance to fix it.

  64. Wencz says:

    ooops. hey, Habs talk can be bold.

  65. coutNY says:

    I did and it didn’t work.. tried /strong too.. than I went below and try there too??

  66. The Teacher says:

    nice try /b

  67. coutNY says:

    HUUMM somebody isn’t ending an HTML tag?

  68. The Teacher says:

    Nope, it isn’t.

  69. sidhu says:

    True, I understand Huet was on fire, but I would have liked to have seen Jaro play a game while he was up with us. He was an AHL all-star, he played reasonably well for us last year, and I’m afraid he may think he’s too good to be sitting in the minors.

  70. Bill H says:

    Very timely and interesting article Mr. Boone.

    Question: When a player is in Hamilton, is his salary counted against the salary cap. I expect it isn’t but just wanted to check.

  71. RS says:

    Speaking of goalies, Halak got the win in OT last night in Hamilton and was first star. Good for him.

  72. Chorske says:

    Amen. I would love to see Huet stick around.

  73. RiverviewCanadien says:

    Me too…he is great and getting better

  74. HotHabs says:

    Totally agree – Huet is a necessity on this team, not an option – at least 2-3 years.

    Mike, we need those guys to stay along with a couple more not mentioned.

    enjoying the high’s of being a Habs fan

  75. The Teacher says:

    Yup, Komi, Pleky, Streit. Don’t know if Huet is a necessity yet.

  76. RiverviewCanadien says:

    Nice list Mike but I would also add, AK46 and ML40. These kids are going to be great, like they are not already, but imagine what gaining the playoff experience (and hopefully #25) will do for these kids as far as conifidence and talent honing.

    I like this team…alot.

    Good luck in the pipes tomorrow Carey…I am hoping you have another brilliant game against the Leafs.

    GO HABS GO!

  77. Revolution No. 9 says:

    We need to sign Huet to a long-term contract. Not necessarily to keep him for the length of the term but because it’s easier to trade a signed goalie (provided it’s a reasonable fee). I think Price might need another season of seasoning. But beyond that, Price is going to have to show he can do the heavy lifting and sending Huet away will open cap space for all those hefty contracts we’re gonna have to fork over in 09-10.

  78. MikeL says:

    Good idea if the contracts were only signed by the organization, and not the player. Huet is not stupid…he knows Price is coming and will be the starter sooner than later. Huet will not sign a long term deal with Price waiting in the wings to steal his job. It makes no sense for him as a player.

  79. howtathor says:

    With Price, the more lifting he does the better he is. Look at last season: Tri-City, WJC, Calder Cup, the kid played about 9 months straight last year and only got better. Huet is in his UFA year. He is playing for the big contract which he won’t get in Montreal. Price needs to work to be sharp and Huet will never accept a diminished role. Bob would never pay 4-5 mil for a mentor/backup with so many key players to sign.

  80. The Teacher says:

    Nah, we don’t need Huet. He gave up 5 goals against washington. Time to send him to the AHL.

  81. likehoy says:

    komi 4 million 6 years
    plekanec 3.5 million 5 years
    kostitsyn 2 million 2 years then increasing till 4.5 million in his 4th and 5th year BY BONUSES
    streit 3 years 2.25 million (cause he’s a late bloomer therefore his career might not be long and he’s only versatile…not a star).

  82. Ali says:

    sorry dude, but you’re dreaming with those numbers, at least as far as Komisarek is concerned…Phaneuf is making 6+/year, Komisarek will get AT LEAST 5 per year and he’s gonna get huge long term deals for 7-10 years. You’re forgetting hes going to be UFA at the end of his contract.

    Plekanec, Kostitsyn i think you’re in the right range, although Kosty should be easier to sign given his brothers here, although given the trend that we’re seeing nowdays you might see the dollars go up as well as the length.

    Streit will get that as a minimum on the open market, but hopefully he takes a hometown discount like Markov did!

    Phew…can’t wait for Ryders 2.5 mill to come off the books, not to mention Dandenault, Smolinski, Brisebois etc.

  83. The Teacher says:

    As I see it as giving him an average of 4 million, and being an UFA at the end of 2009.

    Komi- So let’s say 3 mil, 4 mil, 5 mil, 5 mil, 5.5 mil, 6 mil, 28.5 mil over 6 years? All Bob would have to say is, “Komi, you match up pretty well with Dion, but his offensive capabilities outweigh yours so we can’t give you his salary”

    However, Toronto might havge screwed us when they overpaid stupid Kubina.

    Pleks will be an RFA at the end of 2009. Which makes his contract lower because of that status.(Notwithstanding an offer, we will at least get compensation if that happens) So at 3.5 mil a year for 6 years, 3 mil, 3.5, 4, 4.5, 5, 5 for 6 years and a total of 25 million averages out to about 4.1 a year.

    Kostitsyn- is a restricted free agent at the end of this year. Granted having his brother here SHOULD HELP, but he will get 20 goals this year. And if he hits 30 he will be looking for 3 mil. (Ryder money). I’m guessing he will get a contract averaging 2.5 for 4 years. 2 mil in first 2 years and 3 mill in last two years. which would take him one year into his UFA status.(If I’m not mistaken)

    Streit at three years and 2.25 each year sounds like a little less that he would take but I would be happy with that contract.

  84. gfunkdoc says:

    I don’t see the hilarity in it…Without Huet we’re left with two goalies with the combined experience of 37 NHL games …

  85. The Teacher says:

    Hahaha Tee!

  86. Ed says:

    What’s with this guy Tee? I know a hockey player named Jimmy Tee, but he never made it to the NHL. Is Tee somebody we should have drafted, like that Getzlaff (sounds like a laffs player). Just kidding cournoyer12. I enjoy your posts, and how you like to get people all riled up. I think you would make a great motivator, at least you do on this site. Tee!

  87. The Teacher says:

    Haha, no joke, but the first month he was typing Tee, I thought he had been referring to me!

    Haha, I liked that play on Getzlaf’s name LMAO


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