Zach Parise saved our franchise (the happy thread)
Zach Parise saved our franchise and we should thank him. Here's how it happened:
1. If Zach had signed anywhere other than the Wild, it seems pretty clear that Suter would have returned to Nashville. I base this on Poile's and Suter's post-signing comments about negotiations, promises, right of first refusal, etc.). You can argue DRW but in hindsight, we would have gotten last rights and would have used them. You can argue Wild but, without Parise, it's pretty clear that they weren't attractive enough to rationalize the risk.
2. The bidding war for Zach (and the potential to land both he and Ryan) led to the result of a pair of 13 year deals for $98M. Nobody expected deals of this length and size when negotiations started.
3. Poile would have matched this deal if Suter had let him. He had to, just to show Weber we were serious. Now, Suter rather than the Preds, is to blame for his leaving. We have clean hands.
4. Zach and Ryan set the market for Shea and inadvertently did us a favor. Weber will now want and expect a contract of this size and length.
5.Preds would have then needed to sign Weber to a similar contract even if Suter would have returned at that price, leaving us 2 top pair contracts at this rate. Along with Pekka's contract, we would have 22-23M of cap space tied up in 3 defensive players for at least 7 years.
6. CBA expires in September and by all accounts it has a high chance of eliminating this type of contract. For Shea to get it, he needs to get it NOW.
7. Shea can ONLY get this contract from the Preds or a team that we trade him to in a trade and sign deal. Sure, Shea can pick where he wants to play but NOT via an offer sheet and NOT with the "I'm not sure if I'll sign there" attitude toward a potential trading partner. Any long-term offer sheet is matched; any short term offer sheet doesn't get him a shiny new contract before 9/15. He now has as much to lose as we do, but nobody knew it until the 13/$98 deals came about.
8. Thus, Shea needs a contract NOW-- he knows it and we know it. So, we keep Shea OR we get the maximum value for him because a team will know in advance of the trade that he will sign a Zack/Ryan type contract. Either that or Shea has to risk the world post-CBA renegotiation, which would be a very bad financial move (probably to the tune of $25-30M).
9. Thus, we either wind up with Weber or with a huge return and in either case don't have that amount of cap space tied to 3 defensive players. If we build around Weber, great. If we build around the huge return for him, great. Either is better than having that amount of cash tied up in those guys.
EOHT (End of Happy Thread)
I've said it before. The next few months are fraught with danger for David Poile, but also great opportunity. A few smart signings, a few smart trades, a little bit of luck (for which we are long overdue as a franchise) and we might come of this better than we were this year.
What probably stings the most is losing Suter for nothing, but let's consider a few things. If the Preds had traded him and gotten assets back, it probably would not have sat very well with Weber. Remember that Suter was saying, at the time, that he wanted to remain a Pred, and it came out today that Weber, himself, felt that Ryan wanted to stay. If he had been traded, Weber might've been upset by it in the same way that Parise was upset when NJ traded his friend Langenbrunner and Shea might've wanted out, himself. Now that the Preds don't look like the bad guy in Suter's departure, and maybe even like a victim, Shea has nothing to hold against them. He may even feel a sense of solidarity with the organization, since they were both somewhat victimized in this.
In another way, if the Preds had traded Suter prior to the deadline, they may not have made the 2nd round. You never know, but going out in the 1st round might've discouraged Weber from seeking a long-term deal with Nashville, whereas the success of making the 2nd round (beating the rival Red Wings, no less) might end up being an element that convinces him to stay. So, holding onto Suter and losing him for nothing after the playoffs were over might've been for the best, if Weber signs long term.
Also, I doubt that the Preds would have the flexibility to improve their team if they had to give $7.5M to both defensemen, so I guess that it's just as well that one left. It was nice to have them both at reasonable rates, but having them both at $7.5M for the next decade is a whole 'nother thing. While they were both important to the Preds' success, many other teams have shown that you can be successful with only one defenseman of that caliber. For example, in LA, Doughty isn't paired with another #1-caliber defenseman; he's paired with the invisible Scuderi of all people. If they can win a Cup with one stud defenseman and a bunch of merely solid ones, so can the Preds. So, this is far from the end of the world. If the Preds manage to keep Weber and find (perhaps from within) a solid, top-4 guy to pair with him, things should be fine.
In the end, I think that the Preds will be better off not having all of that money tied up in one defense pairing. If they can spend that money on forwards, they'll probably be better off. Losing Suter throws a kink into things for the time being, but I think that they can pull through it. System can overcome talent, and the Preds have a great system, so they should still be competitive, even with this loss. I doubt that, in 5 years, we'll be looking back at the loss of Suter as a tragedy. I think that it's more likely that it'll be viewed as a bit of a blessing in disguise. Someone will have stepped up in his place, that money will have been put to good use and the Preds will, hopefully, have achieved things that they didn't during the Suter years.
I like this thread!
Also was thinking about what OP said,
Say weber wants his $$$ before cba is done so he can get paid, he can always sign a deal similar to what suter got (maybe even a bit more cuz we have the cap room for best dman in league). Then poile promises to surround our captain with talent.
So weber gets his moola and then poile has to get busy acquiring people.
Because once Shea is paid, he can always pull a Rick Nash and request a trade if he isn't happy. Then he still has his flow and we can get better assets for him if it came down to that.
I'd miss shea way more than suts
This has all gotten very simple ....
With the market value set, and the risk of a new CBA before next season, Poile can not screw this up even if he wanted to. Offer Shea CM (Crosby money). He knows its a peak offer that gives him certainty. Unlike Sutes, if Webs says he'd rather have a one yearer and then see where we are, we'll know that's code for: I'm out after this year. There would be no logical reason for him to turn down CM unless he didn't want to be here. If he doesn't, we face the truth now, remake our team with the assets we get for him, and move on. If he signs, we're golden.
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