Agent Walsh on radio right now
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10-06-2003, 10:38 AM
Join Date: Nov 2002
Originally Posted by
Edit: Now that I've thought about this for a minute, let me add: I can't believe this is still receiving attention, but I guess it's MUCH easier to criticize the Lightning than it is to criticize one of the "big boys". Same thing happened last year when St. Louis' salary got quadrupled. This is not some earth-shattering move, if it hadn't been pounced on by some members of the media as a reason why certain players and teams can't get deals done, no one would have batted an eyelash over this contract, and I've got to say, I don't know ANY Bolts fans who have an issue with what Richards is getting paid. I doubt any of you understand the issues involved down here, including budget and the marketability of the team.
One, St. Louis contract is only a mil a year, and I am uncertain of the length. If it is longer than 2 years, then it is a very smart contract. If it was only 2 years, then it's still not that unreasonable.
Second, the people that are criticizing the Lightning would also be criticizing the "big boys" if they did the same thing. I appreciate that Tampa Bay had to get Richards signed because of the importance he plays to the team, the loss of Prospal, the thin hold the team has on it's fan-base, yada, yada, yada, but it still doesn't mean that they didn't overpay him. There didn't seem to be much involved in the negotiation process. Like I said earlier, I'm pretty sure that if Feaster played things out a little differently, he could have shaved a million or so off the deal without any sacrifice to the team (i.e. holdout).
Third, as for Tampa Bay fans not complaining, it's typical for fans to look at the team short-term. The real negative effects of this contract will not impact this team until the next time it has a young star in a similar situation. Other teams are already feeling the impact of it. Regardless of whether you like the contract or not from TB's perspective, it's pretty hard to ignore the impact it's had on other negotiations. Just because other Tampa Bay fans are okay with the move, it doesn't make it right.
It's a pretty natural thing for well-fiscally managed teams to have hard feelings towards teams that engage in foolish spending habits. If Tampa Bay makes this behaviour a regular thing, they are not likely to be the most popular team among other teams fans.
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