Tuesday, July 05, 2005

More Speculation on Nick Lidstrom

With the media still silent on the issue of Nick Lidstrom's $10 million ($7.6 million post-rollback) salary for 2005-2006, I turned to Ansar Khan of Mlive.com, who recently wrote an analysis of the Wings' payroll for next season. Here is his response via email on what to do with Nick:
"The Red Wings will definitely ask Lidstrom to defer a portion of his salary ($7.6 million after the 24 percent rollback) in exchange for a longer term IF, under the new CBA, it gives them cap relief. That apparently is still being determined. If his salary is still going to cost them $7.6 million towards the cap, then there's no point. However, it would help them if, instead of taking $7.6 this season, he signed a three-year extension for something like $5 million a year, knocking off $2.6 million from their cap this season. But teams don't know yet if the league will allow this."
I agree with Ansar on pushing for Nick to defer part of his salary, especially if it could go towards a long term deal. Lidstrom, 35, will become an unrestricted free agent for the 2006-2007 season, and the main question is, does he want a long term deal? He has always been cautious not to sign long term contracts in case he decides to return to Sweden, where he has always wanted to raise his children. Is that still in his plans? And it's not like a long term deal is enough of a favor to Nick for him to defer the money (like it would be a favor to a guy like McCarty), in fact it's more of a favor to the Wings who have always wanted Nick signed long term. And, when you think about it, it really won't be a deferral but money forfeited, as the Wings will never be able to live up to that "extra chunk of cash deferred," so it's basically a contract re-negotiation we're after. If Nick refuses to defer any salary or make room for the Wings in any other possible way, the Wings have two options. One, shop Nick around and look for a mutli-player trade acquisition. Not that it'd be smart for anyone to take up a $7.6 million contract, but a few teams who are starting . Two, buy out his contract at two-thirds, not counting towards the cap mark. But, since buying out Nick's contract means the Wings wouldn't be able to sign him for a year, that's obviously the last option we'll exercise. And I doubt Nick would let it come to that, after 13 seasons and three Stanley Cups with the team who drafted him. UPDATE 8:25 pm Post-lockout Red Wings ticket prices: "To be determined once new CBA in place," while some teams guarantee price-cuts.


At 7/05/2005 06:15:00 PM, Blogger Matt Saler said...

I just love the idea of Nick Lidstrom in a Colorado Avalanche jersey. Ugh. I hope the League at leasts prohibits buy-out signings within divisions so teams won't have to face their former stars 6 games a season. This is going to cause a lot of people to question whether they are a fan of the team or of the players. If half the Wings sign with Chicago after being bought out, who do you watch? Ugh.

At 7/05/2005 06:57:00 PM, Blogger Brian List said...

I think the league will do anything they can to prevent a mass exodus of half of the players to different teams...if they're smart. Because it's not a good way to bring back fans to tell them that all their jerseys with player names on the back are worthless (or worth much less) now...kind of like that Nascar commercial with a driver changing his car number when his fans already have tattoos of the number. The NHL won't be able to prevent it, but I don't think they'll want franchise players like Nick Lidstrom being shopped around just because clubs made risky offers 4-5 years ago...franchise player exemptions are expected


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