Thread: Speculation: The future of Marc Staal
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03-13-2014, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by GWOW View Post
I said he had a very good season. I'm not knocking him because of one game.

It's what he's going to command. It's his first time at UFA, and he's had two very serious injuries. Look at 2015-16. Six players committed to 36 million bucks (if no Richards buyout). MSL is a UFA. Stepan and Hagelin will get bridge contracts. Staal is a UFA. Say they give Staal six million. Swap him with Richards following a buyout.

35 million bucks for six players (Nash, Henrik, Girardi, Staal, Klein, McDonagh). 40 million for the remaining 15-16 skaters. MSL, Stepan and Hagelin will combine for 12-14 million.

It will be more the same mediocrity. 6-9 seed. 15-22nd pick. Rinse, repeat.

The only three people who are absolutely untouchable are McDonagh, Kreider and Henrik. Maybe Stepan.

Everybody else will continue to do what Sather and Dolan want -- average season, a couple of playoff home dates, continue the cycle.
I don't necessarily agree with all of this (I think Kreider still has plenty of room to grow, and I think Stepan's down year might be partly attributed to his lack of a pre-season).

Regardless of that though, Staal can't be the player where the line gets drawn in the sand. As much as it hurt, Callahan was ultimately expendable at his price tag. We had options (frankly too many options) at his position, and thus couldn't afford to over-pay for him.

In a vacuum, I would agree that Staal should get about the same as Girardi. I think Staal is the better player and a few years younger, but Girardi plays the right side and has durability going for him. Those things, in a vacuum, tend to put the two at the same level contract wise.

That said, behind Girardi, we had Stralman, Klein and two NHL ready (or close to NHL ready) prospects in McIlrath and Allen, one of whom is one of our top prospects. Girardi didn't have a position of great negotiating strength (better than Callahan, but still, the team wouldn't be in a horrible horrible spot if G priced himself over his value). Staal will command more because he knows the team is screwed without him. Moore has barely looked competent as a sheltered 3rd pair D. On the second pair? He'd get roasted on a nightly basis. Who do we have in the pipeline? Skjei, who might be good, but is also at least a couple years away from his first taste of the NHL (to say nothing of being ready for top 4 duty).

That means, if we let Staal walk or trade him, we need to go out and buy a top 4 UFA LD. The price on that would easily be 5+ AAV, and that's for a player who would likely be a couple of levels below Staal.

Value is what a player can get based on production, skill, and the situation of the team looking to sign him. Things would be a lot simpler if contracts were signed in vacuums.

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