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11-28-2011, 12:06 PM
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What are people's thoughts on dealing with players who are about to become UFA's?

This is a question on how you would deal with your team's upcoming UFA's as a GM. What would be your philosophy? I.E. No contract talks during the year, try to resign after the season? No trades or trade them all?

My take is that as a GM I would identify the players that I would like to have back and make every effort to resign them before and yes even during the season. As it gets closer to the trade deadline, I would have a serious conversation with each player and flat out ask them if they have any intention of resigning in the off season. In the event that I couldn't either resign the guys I wanted, or was told that they wouldn't resign, I would look to get something for them at the deadline. Especially for a team like Winnipeg, where I don't expect us to be able to magically restock our roster every year by signing other teams UFA's, I don't think we should be in the habit of losing players for nothing.

This wouldn't work all the time though. In certain instances you might want to hold on to an upcoming UFA, even if he's not resigned. Maybe the team is possibly strong enough to take a run, and you don't want to gut it. Or maybe the UFA in question is in a position of weakness on the roster, and losing him would temporarily destroy the team. You can also get something after the season for the "rights" to a UFA before the July 1 date, but it's considerably less than what you would get at the deadline.

Anyway, this leads to my next question, which is what would you do with this years UFAs:




Also, next year might be even more important:



Seems like the board is a little slow today (post Grey Cup hangover), and I thought this might be a decent point of discussion.

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