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07-05-2012, 12:07 AM
  #122
KW
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I get the point that DT is trying to build a contender on the cheap, which requires building from the draft -- there's no other way if you're low on the bucks. And I get the point that DT is in particular adverse to signing really long term deals at this point, pretty much anything over 4-5 years. So we were already self-eliminated form the Parise sweepstakes, and he's very reluctant on Luongo, unless he gets him for a bag of pucks and a pre-owned zamboni in need of new heater coils.

But why not Olli? Why not Jagr for a year or two? Why not Semin -- is he looking for a 5+ year deal? Why not Wellwood? All of those guys could help us in the short term, yet we find other teams signing them up. All in the name of "not DT's kind of player" or the tired old "locker room cancer" stuff. You can ALWAYS find a reason not to sign a player if you set your mind to it. Heck, the Crosby signing was a risky move health wise, and so was Parise. But it sets a course, it sets an expectation, and it gets people excited. Seems like in Panther land exciting FA signings are about as common as honesty in government.

If DT is worried about setting a high salary expectation when the young ones as well as Weiss begin to talk contracts, there's two points he can make to the owners: 1) Panthers have to accept they aren't going to be able to have a winning team and not pay reasonable NHL salaries, and 2) Short term contracts can be explained away with more ease than long term ones (a 2 year $9M for Olli is easier to justify than a 12 year $100M for Parise).

I'm not saying I believe DT is done, but I'm getting very worried and skeptical with every passing day. Last year's signings created an excitement, a buzz that definitely sold tickets. DT could continue that with one great acquisition, even if it is a bit expensive. $9M for Olli over 2 years would have more than paid for itself, but hey, "not DT's kind of player". So what's the solution then if no one can meet DT's high standard? Play a bunch of rookies? I guess that's DT's message.

Trying to look on the bright side, as exciting as it will be to see Huber, Howden and co. on the ice, even more interesting will be to see what kind of a marketing spin Yorkster will think up by the time September rolls around.

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