Habs’ Subban expects arbitrator to decide on his contract

The Canadiens and restricted free-agent defenceman P.K. Subban, unable to reach a contract agreement, went into a salary-arbitration hearing at 9 a.m. Friday in Toronto. The hearing wrapped up at 1 p.m.

Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin declined to comment to reporters in Toronto after the hearing ended, stating simply: “I have nothing to say.”

Subban’s agent, Don Meehan, told Sportsnet that there are no plans to continue negotiating a long-term deal for the defenceman before the arbitrator’s decision is made.

On Wednesday, the Canadiens submitted a one-year offer of $5.25 million, while Subban and his agent asked for $8.5 million. The two sides were unable to reach a deal before Friday’s hearing.

Arbitrator Elizabeth Neumeier of Boston can choose one of the two salary figures, but can also decide on a number anywhere between the two. Neumeir’s decision must be made by Sunday afternoon and the two sides are free to continue negotiations before then.

After the hearing ended, Subban told Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston the arbitrator will decide his contract for next season, saying: “We have to live with those decisions.”

Subban added: “It’s been an educational process for me.”

He also told The Canadian Press: “There’s dialogue and discussion and decisions were made today in relations to both of our positions and ultimately we have to live with those decisions and move on from here. I know that obviously the arbitration process is over. It is in the hands of the arbitrator now.”

The 25-year-old Subban, who won the Norris Trophy two seasons ago as the NHL’s top defenceman, earned $3.75 million last season when he posted 10-43-53 totals in 82 regular-season games and had 5-9-14 totals in 17 playoff games.

“At the end of the day, it’s been an educational process for me, and I’ll continue to say that because it has been,” Subban told reporters in Toronto. “I’ve learned a lot. Like I said, I’m just excited now to continue to move forward, and that’s all you can do from here is just move forward, move on and get ready for the season.”

When asked if he would still be open to negotiating a long-term deal with the Canadiens, Subban said: “I think that’s kind of a discussion for a later date. It’s not a discussion for today, obviously.”

Tweeted TSN’s Bob McKenzie after the arbitration hearing ended: “My uneducated opinion from afar: MTL likes, maybe really likes, Subban but doesn’t LOVE him. And you have to LOVE someone at 8 x $8-9M+ per.”

In a later tweet, McKenzie added: “More importantly, I guess, IF Subban doesn’t feel the love from MTL, how eager is he to re-up there for eight years? Gonna be interesting.”

(Photo by Peter McCabe/The Gazette)

Habs, Subban wait for arbitrator’s ruling, montrealgazette.com

Subban’s feel-good story takes ugly turn with Habs, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Hockey is a family affair for Subbans,  by The Gazette’s Brenda Branswell

Habs fans touched by boy with meningitis, by The Gazette’s Stu Cowan

Habs’ salary-cap chart, capgeek.com

Will Subban make Top-10 list of highest-paid NHLers? Stu on Sports blog

1,757 Comments

  1. Trollhunter says:

    WAY too much. better hope that cap goes up boys

    S G

  2. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    PK signing for 9 million means that Brian Wilde’s info of PK moving down to 8.5 and the Habs only offering 7 was BS. Meehan must have been asking for 10 all along which would explain the Habs going to arbitration. MB was screwed from the start; especially after the 10.5 million Toews/Kane deals. Coming out of the lockout, MB could have cut a much better deal. He only has himself to blame.

  3. The Jackal says:

    Way too much $$, term is too long as well. MB sucks. Fire him!

  4. savethepuck says:

    I just heard the loud crackling of thousands of Habs fans taking off their tinfoil hats. I wasn’t pleased with the situation but I kept the faith that both sides would do the right thing.
    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

  5. twilighthours says:

    Love it. And the mil per will be a steal in a few years.

    Congratulations to PK and bergevin for getting this done.

  6. on2ndthought says:

    new thread

    “a cannonading drive”

  7. derfab says:

    About time Habs see the light.

  8. Jeffster911 says:

    Folks PK Subban has just signed an 8 year deal! – AAV of 9M – couldnt be happier!

  9. sprague cleghorn says:

    8 years at AAV $9m

    … ‘ow could we forget that?

  10. B says:

    Too bad we may never know the real story of how all this actually went down behind closed doors. Oh well, glad to see Subban remain a Hab even if I do think they over paid.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  11. chrskwn says:

    8 year 72 million

  12. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    Thank God…another Meehan down to the wire job. In the end, I bet MB caved. Meehan simply had all the leverage.

  13. Haberoooo13 says:

    So who starts opening night, Tinordi or Beaulieu?

    Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

  14. on2ndthought says:

    smiling, feeling lighter!

    “a cannonading drive”

  15. habs-fan-84 says:

    This long weekend just got a little more celebratory!

  16. captaink4life says:

    OH HAPPY DAY
    8 MORE YEARS OF PERNELL KARL

    You will always be a Canadien in my eyes, Saku

  17. Psycho29 says:

    But…How can he sign for 8 years?? MB is an idiot….so is MT….and PK is so greedy!!!!

    ;-)

  18. Rob says:

    PHEW! That wasn’t stressfull at ALL

    The Montreal Canadiens: sporting the best AND worst fans since 1909!

  19. on2ndthought says:

    8 years, phew!

    http://canadiens.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=727650

    “a cannonading drive”

  20. DadidolizedDougHarvey says:

    Now what do we talk about?

  21. New says:

    Yea!!

    Now who will we all trash or worship?

  22. Steven says:

    Don’t look now, but Subban signed for 8. Way to overreact again, fellas.

  23. HardHabits says:

    8 years. Never in doubt. :-D

    Anybody know the cap hit?


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