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Habs CANNOT take Halak to arbitration and avoid offer sheets

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Old
05-30-2010, 07:36 PM
  #26
Darth Joker
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Originally Posted by BaseballCoach View Post
The team CAN get rid of the CURRENT goalie controversy by trading one of the goalies. It CANNOT, however, get rid of the tradition of goalie controversies. Suppose Price became number one and Biron number two, and by January 1, Price would be 10-18-2 and Biron 7-1-2 and the team in 11th place. The controversy would be back and in HIGH GEAR!
Your example there is pretty far fetched to say the least.

Beyond that, people act like Montreal has a history of goalie controversies, when this really isn't the case.

There was no goalie controversy whatsoever during the Roy years. There was none during the Thibault years. There was none during the Hackett years.

There came goalie controversies for Theodore and Price because those two guys had meteoric rises which raised expectation levels, but they failed to continue to meet them. And their backups of Huet and Halak played exceptionally well, which naturally raised questions.

As long as the No. 1 goalie does what is expected of him, and as long as there's not two guys actively vying for the No. 1 spot (there is such a thing as career backups that are content to be backups), there is no goalie controversy in Montreal... just like it is in every other NHL city.


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This is Montreal, my friend. If you don't think that having two goalies with each displaying their own strengths and weaknesses during a time when the team is playing at a level that might have them out of the playoffs or once again just fighting for their lives to make eighth place is going to ignite controversy, you are REALLY sticking your head in the sand.
Wow... and I thought you were an optimistic Habs fan. Who says that we'll be out of the playoffs or fighting for our lives to make eight place? If Gauthier does a decent job over the offseason, I could seriously see us winning the division next year.

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05-30-2010, 07:45 PM
  #27
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Originally Posted by Darth Joker View Post
Your example there is pretty far fetched to say the least.

Beyond that, people act like Montreal has a history of goalie controversies, when this really isn't the case.

There was no goalie controversy whatsoever during the Roy years. There was none during the Thibault years. There was none during the Hackett years.
Roy/Hayward in 86-87, 87-88 and 88-89.

Theodore/Hackett 00-01 and 01-02.

Even Dryden/Larocque 78-79!

Vachon/Worsley 67-68 and 68-69.

Vachon/Myre 70-71.

Not just Montreal.

How about Thomas/Rask 09-10?

Giguere/Hiller 08-09 and 09-10?

Emery/Gerber 07-08?

By the way, what does it mean to be a career backup who is "content to be a backup"? If he sees the number one guy losing too much, does he lose on purpose as well so that the coach doesn't give him more work?

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05-30-2010, 08:17 PM
  #28
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Originally Posted by BaseballCoach View Post

By the way, what does it mean to be a career backup who is "content to be a backup"? If he sees the number one guy losing too much, does he lose on purpose as well so that the coach doesn't give him more work?
He's a guy that knows, going into the season, that he's going to be the No. 2, and he's not looking to dislodge the No. 1. "Career backup" probably isn't the right term for it, on second thought. More like an older veteran goalie who's best days are behind him, has had his shot to be a No. 1 elsewhere but it didn't work out, and hence is now just happy to have a job in the NHL.


A true backup plays 20 games (or less!) the entire season. The No. 1 gets at least 60 games. The fact that the No. 1 is playing at least three times as often as the backup renders statistical comparisons pretty moot.

You'd have to be almost through the entire season before the backup has accumulated enough starts to have stats worth comparing to the No. 1.


Look, neither Halak or Price is going to be happy going into next season knowing that they could easily be a No. 1 goalie elsewhere but are stuck as the backup in Montreal.

Now, is there an outside chance that whoever we bring in as a backup plays better than the guy who stays on as our No. 1? Sure, it's possible, but it's not likely. Chances are that we avoid that possibility, and the No. 1 is happier for it.

But if Halak and Price are both back next year, then it's not only likely that we'll have a goalie controversy; it's pretty much guaranteed that we'll have one.


Beyond that, is it really wise to spend, say, $3.75 million a year on Halak and $2.25 million a year on Price when you could take one of those two salaries and devote it to a good forward or defenseman instead?

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05-30-2010, 08:26 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by Darth Joker View Post
He's a guy that knows, going into the season, that he's going to be the No. 2, and he's not looking to dislodge the No. 1. "Career backup" probably isn't the right term for it, on second thought. More like an older veteran goalie who's best days are behind him, has had his shot to be a No. 1 elsewhere but it didn't work out, and hence is now just happy to have a job in the NHL.


A true backup plays 20 games (or less!) the entire season. The No. 1 gets at least 60 games. The fact that the No. 1 is playing at least three times as often as the backup renders statistical comparisons pretty moot.

You'd have to be almost through the entire season before the backup has accumulated enough starts to have stats worth comparing to the No. 1.


Look, neither Halak or Price is going to be happy going into next season knowing that they could easily be a No. 1 goalie elsewhere but are stuck as the backup in Montreal.

Now, is there an outside chance that whoever we bring in as a backup plays better than the guy who stays on as our No. 1? Sure, it's possible, but it's not likely. Chances are that we avoid that possibility, and the No. 1 is happier for it.

But if Halak and Price are both back next year, then it's not only likely that we'll have a goalie controversy; it's pretty much guaranteed that we'll have one.


Beyond that, is it really wise to spend, say, $3.75 million a year on Halak and $2.25 million a year on Price when you could take one of those two salaries and devote it to a good forward or defenseman instead?

Let me 'splain you something. Carey Price lost the majority of his games. If Halak were not around and we continued to play Price, there is a good chance we would have fulfilled the tankers' wishes and finished bottom 5. Price does NOT deserve a contract for much more than $1M.

I want to sign Halak at $3M or a touch more, Price for $1M or a touch more. Clearly Halak will start the year as #1, he deserves it. But if he falters and Price plays well, YES Price will get a shot at more games. This is how it should be!!!

If both play very well, then maybe they go 50-32 in games. Halak is well rested for the playoffs. Price will get a raise for the following year, and possibly a trade to a team that needs a #1 and is willing to PAY NICELY.

Right now, Price will NOT fetch much, and it is utter folly to trade Halak for some picks or prospects and leave the club entirely dependent on Price. The only exception I would grant is a very high return on Halak, and the Habs going right back out and acquiring a #1-capable goaltender who starts training camp AT LEAST co-equal with Carey.

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05-30-2010, 08:36 PM
  #30
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Originally Posted by BaseballCoach View Post
Let me 'splain you something. Carey Price lost the majority of his games. If Halak were not around and we continued to play Price, there is a good chance we would have fulfilled the tankers' wishes and finished bottom 5. Price does NOT deserve a contract for much more than $1M.

I want to sign Halak at $3M or a touch more, Price for $1M or a touch more. Clearly Halak will start the year as #1, he deserves it. But if he falters and Price plays well, YES Price will get a shot at more games. This is how it should be!!!

If both play very well, then maybe they go 50-32 in games. Halak is well rested for the playoffs. Price will get a raise for the following year, and possibly a trade to a team that needs a #1 and is willing to PAY NICELY.

Right now, Price will NOT fetch much, and it is utter folly to trade Halak for some picks or prospects and leave the club entirely dependent on Price. The only exception I would grant is a very high return on Halak, and the Habs going right back out and acquiring a #1-capable goaltender who starts training camp AT LEAST co-equal with Carey.
Ok, at least I see where you're coming from now.

While I don't think that Price really deserves more than $2 million a year, I think that he'll get it since free agents almost never take pay cuts (and Price made over $2 million last year). About the only way free agents take pay cuts is when they sucked so bad that no other NHL team wants them. And while Price never had a good season, he showed enough flashes of brilliance, and he has enough potential, that I can easily see a team offer sheeting him $2 million or more a season. I hope that I'm wrong, but there you go.

If you're right, then fine, bring Price back for a little over a $1 million per season. With him locked into a salary that low, his trade value goes up considerably because his cap hit is outstanding for a potential No. 1 goalie for another team.

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05-30-2010, 08:51 PM
  #31
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Originally Posted by Darth Joker View Post
Ok, at least I see where you're coming from now.

While I don't think that Price really deserves more than $2 million a year, I think that he'll get it since free agents almost never take pay cuts (and Price made over $2 million last year). About the only way free agents take pay cuts is when they sucked so bad that no other NHL team wants them. And while Price never had a good season, he showed enough flashes of brilliance, and he has enough potential, that I can easily see a team offer sheeting him $2 million or more a season. I hope that I'm wrong, but there you go.

If you're right, then fine, bring Price back for a little over a $1 million per season. With him locked into a salary that low, his trade value goes up considerably because his cap hit is outstanding for a potential No. 1 goalie for another team.
Carey Price earned $850,000 last year. He had bonuses in his contract, that he did not earn, and which drove his cap hit up to $2.2M, at least initially. However, the Habs got the cap room back when Carey failed to make the bonuses.

A 1M contract is actually a raise for Carey, and it is for what he did in 07-08 and the first half of 08-09.

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05-30-2010, 09:23 PM
  #32
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Almost right!

Once an RFA with arbitration eligibility is taken to arbitration OR takes the club to arbitration, either one, then RFA offer sheets (with compensation to the club) can no longer be accepted by the player. However, as long as a qualifying offer was made, and no arbitration was elected, then the player does NOT become UFA if the club and him cannot come to an agreement. He simply can receive offer sheets, which are his protection.
If a team takes a player to arbitration, it MUST accept the arbitrator's award, which will be for one or two years, at the player's option, unless only one year remains until UFA status.

If the player takes the TEAM to arbitration, and the team elects for a one year ruling, the team is not obligated to accept the ruling but can walk away and allow the player to become UFA.

If the player with two or more RFA years left takes the TEAM to arbitration, and the team elects a TWO year ruling, then the team MUST accept the ruling for the first year, and can announce it will walk away from the second year and allow the player to go UFA after the first year elapses.
This is what's the deal with Perezhogin for exemple...... Halak has signed 2 Pros contract and this puts him at RFA class 2 correct? He has now the choice to pick Arbitration and if he does, he can't receive offer sheet...correct? But if he doesn't opt for arbitration, offer sheet can be accepted...correct?

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05-31-2010, 02:46 AM
  #33
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There's no way we're going to be able to sign one of our goalies and a veteran backup for less than Halak and Price will make together unless you sign a ***** backup who isn't someone I'd feel comfortable putting in net anyways. Do you think Turco or Nabokov are going to accept under $4m? Very unlikely. So it doesn't make sense to trade one of them unless someone blows us away with an offer. As long as we pay less than we'd have to if we'd have to sign an above average goalie who can backup a young kid in Price or Halak, we sign both Price and Halak. If you want to give them an opportunity to shine as a #1 goalie, you sign them and wait for the right offer. If we can't take Halak to arbitration, it doesn't change this fact.

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05-31-2010, 08:55 AM
  #34
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Originally Posted by BaseballCoach View Post
One interesting thing has came out of my detailed reading of the arbitration rules. One of our moderators and several other posters have written that Halak could be taken directly to arbitration thus bypassing the ability to receive and accept an offer sheet. ...
I can't remember if it was here or elsewhere, but I've been a proponent of this. I think I also prefaced my proposed deadline of June 15th with the acknowledgement that his salary level didn't require this, but that we would be smart to try to push for the earlier resolution anyway.

I think the others have clarified the rule sufficiently already. The Habs really should do this, take him to arbitration. Not because I really think there are any teams who will tender offer sheets... I think that's unlikely in the extreme, it seems to be passe. But just to get his agent to focus on the business at hand. The deal is going to be with the Habs. Get it done, don't try to bring up any bogus phantom offer sheet nonsense, just know that the deal is coming. And if it does end up in arbitration, the statistical comparables probably favour the Habs quite strongly.

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05-31-2010, 09:24 AM
  #35
Darth Joker
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Originally Posted by BaseballCoach View Post
Carey Price earned $850,000 last year. He had bonuses in his contract, that he did not earn, and which drove his cap hit up to $2.2M, at least initially. However, the Habs got the cap room back when Carey failed to make the bonuses.

A 1M contract is actually a raise for Carey, and it is for what he did in 07-08 and the first half of 08-09.
Thanks for the info. I always assumed that cap hit was equivalent to what a player actually gets paid, with the exception of long-term front-loaded contracts.

I guess we probably can bring Price back for a $1 million. That's great news.

Wow, Price must be kicking himself after costing himself that much cash...

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05-31-2010, 09:49 AM
  #36
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One interesting thing has came out of my detailed reading of the arbitration rules. One of our moderators and several other posters have written that Halak could be taken directly to arbitration thus bypassing the ability to receive and accept an offer sheet. Apparently this is an option only available to a club when the player was making more than $1.5M in the last year of the existing contract. Halak does not qualify for this option on the part of the club this year. He would qualify next year, if he signs a 1-year contract worth more than $1.5M. However, this could be a reason he chooses not to sign a one-year contract and to seek offer sheets now.

Read more at Suite101: Filing for Salary Arbitration in the NHL: Who is Eligible, the Filing Process, and How it is Settled http://national-hockey-league-nhl.su...#ixzz0pRDlxuEB
Let them sign him... we'd get what? 5 X 1st round pick? way to go!!

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05-31-2010, 11:38 AM
  #37
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Halak isn't getting an offer sheet. The only way a team is willing to give up picks is for a long term contract and Halak won't want to sign a long term contract because he'll get only $3mish over a long term.

No team is going to sign him to a 5 yr $20m contract imo. For a team to make it worthwhile to give up the picks, they need to make the contract at least 4 years. Look at the Penner offer, the length, the Vanek offer, to give up those picks, you don't want to sign the guy for only 3 years because your giving up a #1 pick that you have rights to for like 7 years.

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05-31-2010, 01:09 PM
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Once, twice a year. Well, as of late. Vancouver placed an offer sheet on Backes. St. Louis matched and then put an offer sheet on Bernier. Vanek and the Oliers. Penner and the Oliers. There's one more that happened too recently.
I can see someone like Don Waddell (the worst GM in hockey) making an offer to Halak with the freed up Kovalchuk money. Atlanta needs to do something this year or they are in serious trouble and hence draft picks mean nothing.

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05-31-2010, 01:31 PM
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I can see someone like Don Waddell (the worst GM in hockey) making an offer to Halak with the freed up Kovalchuk money. Atlanta needs to do something this year or they are in serious trouble and hence draft picks mean nothing.
When Waddell had Kari Lehtonen who had a similar year to Halak a few years back, Waddell knew better to give him a long term big money contract. He realized that with young goalies, they aren't consistent. Waddel won't all of a sudden throw big money long term at a young goalie. He didn't do it with Lehtonen, I can't see him doing it with Halak.

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05-31-2010, 01:35 PM
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I can see someone like Don Waddell (the worst GM in hockey) making an offer to Halak with the freed up Kovalchuk money. Atlanta needs to do something this year or they are in serious trouble and hence draft picks mean nothing.
They have Pavelec, ditching a 1st pick and a 3rd minimum wouldn't be as beneficial as the picks themselves.

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05-31-2010, 01:40 PM
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I can't remember if it was here or elsewhere, but I've been a proponent of this. I think I also prefaced my proposed deadline of June 15th with the acknowledgement that his salary level didn't require this, but that we would be smart to try to push for the earlier resolution anyway.

I think the others have clarified the rule sufficiently already. The Habs really should do this, take him to arbitration.
Just to be CLEAR, the Habs can only take him to arbitration AFTER they tender a Qualifying Offer in June, and ONLY IF Halak does not accept an offer sheet between July 1st noon and evening July 5th.

Furthermore, the Habs can only take Halak to arbitration ONCE, so if they do it this year, they will be exposed next year. The best situation might be if Halak asks for arbitration, since this would mean that he is more interested in playing HERE than elsewhere and just wants to get a fair salary. Presumably the salary would exceed $1.5M and then next year, the Habs would have the option of taking him directly to arbitration for his last RFA year.....if they choose to under the circumstances at that time.

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05-31-2010, 01:40 PM
  #42
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When Waddell had Kari Lehtonen who had a similar year to Halak a few years back, Waddell knew better to give him a long term big money contract. He realized that with young goalies, they aren't consistent. Waddel won't all of a sudden throw big money long term at a young goalie. He didn't do it with Lehtonen, I can't see him doing it with Halak.
Not to mention Waddell is no longer the GM of the Thrashers.

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05-31-2010, 01:47 PM
  #43
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Not to mention Waddell is no longer the GM of the Thrashers.
Exactly, Rick Dudley is the GM now.

If any team wanted to sign Halak long term and want to replace their aging UFA I would say it is St. Louis who has Chris Mason at $3 million per, he is what 33 now so he is expendable.

A 5 year $18 million deal would be hard for Halak to turn down, that is a nice 5 year term as guaranteed #1 in St. Louis.

San Jose may as well, but with our past trading history with San Jose I can see Doug Wilson trying to work out a deal before offer sheeting.

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05-31-2010, 01:48 PM
  #44
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Originally Posted by BaseballCoach View Post
Just to be CLEAR, the Habs can only take him to arbitration AFTER they tender a Qualifying Offer in June, and ONLY IF Halak does not accept an offer sheet between July 1st noon and evening July 5th.

Furthermore, the Habs can only take Halak to arbitration ONCE, so if they do it this year, they will be exposed next year. The best situation might be if Halak asks for arbitration, since this would mean that he is more interested in playing HERE than elsewhere and just wants to get a fair salary. Presumably the salary would exceed $1.5M and then next year, the Habs would have the option of taking him directly to arbitration for his last RFA year.....if they choose to under the circumstances at that time.
Well, I guess the best situation would be if Halak just signs with us tomorrow. But I wouldn't hesitate to use our arbitration option this year. I still think arbitration is likely to be much more favourable to the Habs than to Halak, given his career numbers relative to our expectations/hopes of his future potential.

It all depends on having a feel for the pulse of the league's GMs wrt offer sheets and just how serious Walsh wants to be about using that as a negotiating ploy, though. My sense (based on nothing but my imagination) is that there won't be any rogue GMs going the offer sheet route. Maybe Gauthier would have some rogue-radar, though, who knows. And that Walsh would at least try to use it as a ploy anyway, rogues or no rogues. But who knows, maybe Walsh is more pragamatic than I give him credit for.

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05-31-2010, 01:50 PM
  #45
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Originally Posted by RE-HABS View Post
A 5 year $18 million deal would be hard for Halak to turn down, that is a nice 5 year term as guaranteed #1 in St. Louis.
Alan Walsh should be fired if he got Halak to accept a long term deal only worth $3m.

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