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09-10-2004, 10:58 AM
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Let me add this to your "collection of players" concept. you compare the capitals and rangers in that comment. they are in fact not remotely the same situation.
The rangers use their financial advantage to raid both the free agent market and the financial problems of other teams(salary dump deals like the kovalev trade) to get top players. The capitals on the other hand were largely a home grown team.
The Capitals were not a collection of players. There were as many or more home grown players on that team as any in the league, its just that many had matured and many had earned star status. in 02-03 the capitals regularly dressed a lineup with Kolzig(draft), Witt(draft), Gonchar(draft), Klee(draft), Eminger(draft), Johansson(trade/franchise record for career games played), Bondra(draft), Konowalchuk(draft), Halpern(undrafted free agent), Sutherby(draft). of those ten players combined only one season(johansson's rookie season) was played with a different team. Thats half the game roster. Tampa Bay had 4 home grown players last season. 4. You dump the Capitals in the Rangers catagory because they signed one $5m free agent in its entire history and traded for one superstar player.
By the way...Look at the Tampa Bay payroll. If they sign St Louis and Andreychuk, they will be within a new contract to Lecavalier or Richards of having a payroll where at the same $50m level as the Capitals had.

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