04 July 2012

Offer Sheeting Shea Weber

Ryan Suter decided to go to the Minnesota Wild, who still don't look all that impressive, nor exciting.  The Detroit Red Wings still have a Nick Lidstrom-sized gap in their blue line.

Shea Weber was taken to arbitration last year by the Nashville Predators.  Once a case is going to arbitration, the player is unable to sign an offer sheet with another team.  However, the team can only elect for arbitration once in their interaction with a player.  As the Predators have already done this once with Weber, they're unable to do so again.  The ball is firmly in Shea Weber's court.  He can choose arbitration with the Predators (restricting him to only working with the Preds on a long-term deal until the arbitration date arrives), or he can sit back, keep his options open, and work on a long-term deal with the Predators while still being open to offer sheets.

Mirtle at the Globe and Mail revealed this year's RFA compensation tiers.  For a deal that averages between  6.728 and 8.410 M/yr, the compensation required is "only" 2 first round picks, a second, and a third.  I'd trade that straight up for Weber in a heartbeat.  Considering that Ryan Suter just went for 13 years/98 million (7.54M overall cap hit), and Weber is presumably the better of the two, it wouldn't be outlandish to give Weber a deal that somehow averaged 8-8.4M/yr.

There's two considerations that have to be made here though:

First of all, the compensation package is based off of the first 5 years of the deal.  Suter will be making a lot more than his 7.54M/yr average salary in the first 5 years of his deal, via signing bonuses that pump his total yearly pay to over 12M a year for the first couple years.  Putting years like this into the first 5 of a Weber offer sheet would bump the compensation up into the next tier, which would be four (!) first round picks.  Such bumps for signing bonuses would have to be pushed back until years 6-8 of a potential deal.  Would this be palatable to Shea Weber?  I don't know, but it would be necessary from the perspective of any team that would be putting an offer in front of him.

Secondly, would Nashville match the offer sheet?  Back in 2006, when Edmonton put an offer sheet in front of Thomas Vanek of the Buffalo Sabres, the Sabres matched the offer sheet.  That same summer, Buffalo had already let Daniel Briere and Chris Drury walk (one of those was a good decision, the other was not).  Buffalo fans were already upset, and losing Vanek would have been too much to bear for the fanbase, which likely would've responded by demanding the heads of everyone in the Sabres' organization.  The Vanek offer sheet probably would've been matched for anything short of Wayne Gretzky and a time machine.  Nashville is likely at a similar point in their process here.  But if they wouldn't pony up what MIN would for Suter, would they pony up even more for Weber?  There's one way to find out...

1 comment:

  1. that is weird because this is the first time I see that Ryan Suter wanted or went to the Minnesota Wild, do you have updated information on this?? I would like to know how he is doing there