DUEL!

The Sam Gagner contract is going to be a tough one for Craig MacTavish. If his outer marker is the Hall contract ($6M times 7) then Gagner has to fall below that in both cap and term. The question is: how much below?

There’s a few things we know based on the silence from both sides right now:

  1. The two sides are far enough apart that getting this thing wrapped up isn’t a quick item.
  2. The deadline of a hearing is a bigger bomb for the Oilers than it is for Gagner.
  3. MacT can’t allow this thing to go to arbitration.
  4. MacT can’t afford to trade Sam Gagner without getting a capable center in return.

And there’s one important thing Sam Gagner may have decided that will very likely mean he’s in a new town next week: he and his agent may have as their #1 priority testing free agency next season–the youngest ever to do so.

SURPRISE, SURPRISE SURPRISE

russia gif

Let’s say you and I are neighbours and you have a car for sale. I need a car because we’re driving to Ontario this summer, and you want $22,000 for the car. We’ve talked and we’ve joked around about the price and we’re pretty comfortable with each other (although not friends). I tell my wife I’m going to get that car for $18,000 and decide the best time to buy the car from you is the Friday before we travel (leaving me the weekend and Monday to get the insurance, etc).

I figure the fact that it’s left so late will give you impetus to make a deal you have in your back pocket, and that you’re probably tired of not being able to park your two cars in the garage without moving the sale car out of the way.

So, on the Friday morning I knock on your door. I tell you there’s $16,000 cash in my pocket and would like to get this deal done today–I’m deciding between this and another vehicle and have decided yours is slightly better. Now, you tell me that it’s $22,000 firm–didn’t you tell me that? you thought you did–and we start going back and forth. I’ve set the offer so that we should be able to come in around $19,000, but when I go up you won’t go down. We’ve never really had a discouraging word between each other, and now I’m wondering why you’re so stubborn–no one says $22,000 and then STAYS at $22,000–and you’re wondering why I don’t understand words like “firm” and thinking about your coffee getting cold in the house.

After 45 minutes, I thank you, go back to my house and tell my wife you’re an idiot, he does the same. My wife says “I told you not to leave this so late” and his wife says “he probably thought you were willing to back down on the price–are you sure you told him 22 firm?” and maybe we meet out on the driveway later and maybe we don’t (I’m very stubborn, it’s a Dutch weakness).

I think there’s a little of that in this negotiation, although clearly there’s no way I could have specific knowledge. Maybe Sam Gagner and his agent have a value in their heads–$5.5 million for 6 years, or $4.5M for one year, or $5.25M for 5 years with a NTC–and the Oilers are waiting for them to come down on their demands. And it hasn’t happened and it’s Friday.

The problem? The Oilers have far more to lose than Sam Gagner. Short and curlies as they say. The center depth chart looks like scorched earth without him.

NHL DEFENSE IS A DOG’S LIFE

dog-performing-amazing-handstand-trickThe Oilers have so much depth on defense now that it’s a good guess we’ll see 8 breakers opening night. If we sat down and made a depth chart, I think it’s interesting to see how many players the team may have to either trade or risk waivers on when cutdown day comes:

1. Ladislav Smid
2. Jeff Petry
3. Andrew Ference
4. Justin Schultz
5. Nick Schultz
6. Anton Belov
7. Denis Grebeshkov
8. Phil Larsen

9. Corey Potter

10. Oscar Klefbom
11. Martin Marincin
12. Taylor Fedun
13. Brandon Davidson
14. Brad Hunt
15. Martin Gernat
16. David Musil
17. Joey Leach

Potter’s sphincter must be around his Adam’s apple by now, poor guy. The one thing we can tell him this morning is that the odds of the 8 guys ahead of him being completely healthy opening night are well short of 100%. If I knew him, I’d also say that the odds he makes this team are better than they were the year he got here and that the Renney hire in Edmonton was a lucky break for him but he’s earned this career with the Oilers. I’d also tell him he’s not expensive and that a trade during training camp is possible.

I wouldn’t have to tell him to arrive in shape and ready. From all we know about him, Corey Potter has done everything asked and more since he arrived in town. If he’s sent down the road, attitude and fitness will not be the motive.

If the Swedish kid beats him though, all bets are off.

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135 Responses to "DUEL!"

  1. Ducey says:

    I can see Belov being farmed for the first 20 games or so

  2. Ca$h-Money! says:

    I like Gagner and want him to say. I don’t think he’s that bad defensively, he just appeared that way in Krueger’s unique system. I’d pay 5.25×5 if I had too as much as it stings.

    I want to see 3 things out of our D.

    1. Trade 2 assets (or more) for 1 better asset. Potter/Schultz seem the most likely to be traded, as Belov/Grebs won’t be and I think they are already penciled into the opening night lineup; if they abandoned the KHL and get shipped to the AHL, you had best believe that no more KHL players will be coming to Edmonton for a long time. Welcome to the active roster gentlemen.

    2. Please keep Larsson. I hope he wasn’t just filler on the Horcoff trade. If we had drafted this kid we would think he’s a really promising prospect; don’t undervalue him because we didn’t call his name on draft day, he has lots of upside and has shown glimpses at the NHL level.

    3. Please keep Klefbom in the AHL for at least 40 games. If he’s at the top of the depth chart down there by mid season then call him up, trade a roster player for a draft pick, and rest easy knowing he’ll be on the team for years to come. We’ve got enough depth to give us a playoff run, maybe not a deep one. D is no longer the problem, that’s clearly the C position.

  3. slopitch says:

    Morning LT. Sam Gagner isn’t as good as say a Matt Duchene who signed yesterday for 6 million. And he’s no Patrice Bergeron. I’d still go 5.25×5 to get it done. Your buying UFA years and (as you said) the team simply cant afford to lose him.

  4. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    “Let’s say you and I are neighbours and you have a car for sale.”

    I have no true familial analogy, but I do have a piece of family lore that runs in the same stream.

    When I was about 8, c. 1988, the family decided to take a big trip wandering through BC and Alberta — places like Hope, Penticton, Jasper, Lake Louise, etc. — camping in one of those tent trailers that attach to your vehicle and follow you ominously everywhere you go.

    My dad as long as forever had been driving a gigantic, yellow Ford station wagon c. 1970, something like this:

    http://autobestpics.com/img/Ford-Station-Wagon1.jpg

    For the trip he needed something a little newer, more reliable, etc. He bought a fake wood paneling Buick station wagon c. 1980, something like this:

    http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f148/TATA6679/estate.jpg

    He sold the yellow Ford for $75 and a case of beer (probably Blue, that’s all he drank then). At 8 I had no conception of value and to this day I really couldn’t tell you if my dad got hosed on that deal or not, but I can say that my Mom’s sense of the deal wavered from “you blithering idiot” to “hahahaha” and that was fun for all of us (excepting dad). For me and my brother the “sweetener” in the deal is simply what made it hilarious, the addition of a case of beer to any deal makes it, if not fair, at least fun.

    It’s a matter of family lore now that this is both the worst and the best deal ever done. It is referred to almost constantly.

    Two years later the Buick broke down (one of many serious breakdowns) and needed over $2000 in repairs so we could travel down to the Oregon coast.

  5. Lowetide says:

    Rom: Awesome. My Dad always picked a car that got good mileage, so we were constantly driving vehicles like the one Dennis Weaver drove in Duel (above). So when I was old enough, I would take girls on dates and to the lake in this

    http://waywardgarage.com/1234/fun-times-for-all-my-old-valiant-sedan/

    We never sold a vehicle when I was a kid. My Dad would drive it to the auto wrecker and take the cash. He could fix cars though. I can’t tell you the number of times we broke down as a kid, and he’d ALWAYS fix the damn thing. I remember one year he had a yellow car where the whole family had to chew gum for a few minutes, hand it to him, and he’d put the gum on a hole in the rad. I honestly never thought it was unusual, guess I thought everyone’s Dad was like that. :-)

  6. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Also, Duel is one of my Mom’s favorite movies. It used to come on tv a lot and she’d tell us how it came on once when dad was doing shift work at the Mill and he called and she told him to go away, she was too wrapped up in it.

    —–

    “If the Swedish kid beats him though, all bets are off.”

    Interestingly, this could mean either/both Larsen and Klefbom. He’s sandwiched between a pair of folks who will both probably outpace him shortly.

    Potter’s value, however, is his natural right side and his value deal. A reliable bottom pairing guy making next to nothing who can play on the right side has value on this team right now. And, I’d think he could be moved for a late pick if necessary to a team against the cap.

  7. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide: I honestly never thought it was unusual, guess I thought everyone’s Dad was like that.

    I think at some very real level that is actually true. At the moment of a child’s birth, dads must be given this interesting gift.

  8. bookje says:

    I think MacT made a rookie move of making a fair offer right off the start. He also spoke highly of Gagner as a team leader. Gagner’s agent is going to make them pay the full Free Agent premium.

  9. Lewis Grant says:

    The UFA/RFA market has gone crazy. $5.8X8 for Dustin Brown? WTF? Sure, he’s a guy I’d love to have on my team, but he’s a guy who very consistently scores only 25-30-55. You are now paying him more than point-per-game guys like Getzlaf/Perry/Tavares got on their RFA deals (which also bought some UFA years).

    Getzlaf/Perry themselves are now getting $8.5M. That’s at least $1M more than players of their caliber were getting. Spezza/Heatley got $7.5M at a time when they were putting up 90-100 points every single year.

    Duchene is getting more than Tavares.

    Bergeron is a great player, but he is getting Toews/Datsyuk money. All three are great defensive players, but he’s a 60-point guy and they’re 80-90-point guys.

    And don’t get me started on the goalies.

    This, when the cap in a year will be going DOWN!

    This reminds me of signings like Briere/Drury/Gomez, all of whom were later bought out. The difference is that these guys are RE-signing without hitting the open market. The other difference is that current teams should have an advantage, because only they can offer 8-year deals.

    Anyways, my point is that I’d almost rather see Gagner traded at this point, because he’s going to be overpaid. Please no NTC. I honestly think he’s a complementary player. We all know that his underlying numbers are not that good. Trade him and a D prospect for a two-way 2 line center.

  10. vesci says:

    What I find interesting is how the perception of Gagner’s value has changed so much in about an 80 game span. If recollection serves me, just before Gagner had his 8 point night in Feb 2012 most Oiler fans were relatively disappointed in him. The general consensus being he was small, couldn’t win a face off and wasn’t particularly strong defensively and given that his offence wasn’t dynamic and clearly lagged behind Nuge he wasn’t a great fit for the team. At this time, despite in my opinion the underlying issues of size, lack of F/O ability and just ok defence remaining his contract value has increased greatly due to a jump in offence over a relatively short period of time which may or may not be sustainable or a true indication of his offensive ability going forward.

    Now despite the above I like Gagner as a player, but what I am concerned about is bang for the buck. At some point Mac T has to say ” I need a car but that car isn’t worth a penny more than X” I think X is $5MM/ yr give or take . If he wants more than that we need to think long term salary structure for the team and how a large $ for Gagner will fit with that. Also, if we look at Gagner a little more critically we may find that the Oilers will be able to get more of the type of centre they really need ( bigger, better D and the ability to be ok on the dot with some offence) for less money. Maybe package one of the plethora of extra D with Gagner for that centre?

  11. khildahl says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: I think at some very real level that is actually true. At the moment of a child’s birth, dads must be given this interesting gift.

    It’s something to do with yellow vehicles. I remember my dad pulling our monstrous canary-colored Suburban over every 30 minutes to refill the radiator while hauling a trailer through Banff National Park.

  12. khildahl says:

    On Gagner, I may be remembering things that didn’t actually happen, but hasn’t he signed a contract at the last minute prior to arbitration a few times already?

  13. Lowetide says:

    Vesci: Certainly not on this blog. Gagner has always been highly regarded here, even with the knowledge he was young and learning on the job. Sam Gagner is highly thought of pretty much everywhere, although Cult of Hockey is not a fan.

  14. russ99 says:

    The only thing keeping Potter in town right now is that he’s inexpensive and he can push other players in camp. I see him being a TC cut and picked up on waivers.

    Gagner is an interesting case.

    Everything he’s said in the press has been focused on staying here.

    Yet, he’d be a fool not to go after UFA next season considering what even lesser UFAs get in the marketplace.

    I really hope it doesn’t go to a hearing, (which would mean the Oilers have to cave on $ and/or term – at least a little) since that’s the worst outcome for the Oilers. We’d either have to keep him and pay big bucks or lose him next offseason, or trade him for far below his actual value.

    BTW – the idea that Grabovski is waiting in the wings for a Gagner trade is ludicrous. There’s nobody the Oilers can realistically add in FA (or a Gagner or Hemsky trade) that can come close to what Gagner brings, so it’s imperative that the Oilers get this done.

  15. uni says:

    Mveh, waive Brown and any of the other 4th line plugs that can’t cut muster (Eager we’re looking at you). Slap the extra D on the 4th line wings. More comfortable with Grebeshkov and Potter on the wings than Brown and Eager any day.

  16. khildahl says:

    uni,

    Hi MacT!

    ;)

  17. Henry says:

    The Oilers are really in a pickle with Gagner. On a one year deal, his trade value goes way down and they have no centre depth. The only thing in their back pocket is the possibility of Grabovski as a replacement. If Grabovski signs with someone before the arb. hearing, the Oilers will be forced to pay up. Wtih the Nuge getting his $6M and Schutz and Petry getting well paid next year. Yikes.

    If they can manage to keep this defense depth through to the deadline, the Oilers could be in a nice spot to add good players for a stretch drive.

  18. Lucinius says:

    uni,

    Sure you don’t want to put Smid on the wing instead?

  19. Lois Lowe says:

    I think we as fans have the hardest time staying objective during negotiations because we have interests aligned with both parties. We’re stuck in limbo and ending trying to make narratives that tell the story that works best for us.

    I like Gagner, I hope he stays an Oiler, but even I have a price at which I would rather see him moved along than signed. I am sure that they’ll get something done, their feet aren’t really at the fire yet.

  20. Maverick says:

    LT, last summer we all had a great discussion on here about Sam Gagner and his contract. I can’t seem to find the archive of the exact discussion. I do recall I wasn’t all that thrilled with Gagner last summer and I thought a $4.75 Million a year would be an over payment. Fast forward to this summer and we are discussing $5M plus for Gagner! Yikes! I like Gagner but not that much.

    Do the Oilers need him? Yes, but only because their center depth, stinks. Is there anyone in the system that can take his place? Nope. I think MacT’s sphincter is pretty tight right now too.

    End of the day, even with everyone in the organization and the players in the room really like Sam, I think he is the first of the bunch to go. I can see him being bundled with one of defenseman to a new home by next week. MacT seems like a really smart cookie and I don’t see him losing this Duel.

  21. Jordan says:

    The only card the Oilers have in their pocket right now is that they can make Gagner’s life difficult for the next year.

    “What’s that? You don’t want to sign the contract? Oh, okay… I guess if you really want to be a free agent, I’ll just have to trade you somewhere out of conference. Where did I put Garth’s phone number…?”

    Its a petulant move, but at this point the Oilers can’t walk away from this without looking bad.

    Either he goes to arb, and is a UFA next year (Oil Lose), or they sign him for too much ($/term/NMC – Oil Lose), and either way, they may need to trade him.

    The best move they can make right now is to sign Grabo, and tell Gagner to play ball or play 4th line minutes leading up to being a UFA, and the team has all year to ruin his reputation by calling him a small, poor faceoff, perimeter player.

    That’s actual leverage, but considering the whole “Oilers Family” image being developed… I don’t see MacT getting all cut-throat on his “priority centre”.

    Either that or they have a trade lined up, but really… is there enough value out there to trade Gagner @ ~5M for…X? I’m not seeing it.

  22. rich says:

    Great analogy LT.

    It may be that MacT made a rookie mistake (as Bookje says) in voicing things publically re: Gagner, but I think it was deliberate. He would prefer not to go to arbitration because you always have hard feelings as you have to say why someone is not worth what they think they are. I’m sure this played into some of what happened in Nashville w/Shea Weber the year before he got his massive offer sheet from Philly.

    Gagner has the advantage. He knows MacT lacks for centers and is dealing from a position of weakness so he thinks he’s going to have to fold or risk losing him for nothing. From what we’ve seen this week, it seems there’s a gap between dollars and the no movement clause (and the said value).

    Consequently, MacT has said all the right things in public. If he does the opposite, he pushes him out the door. Maybe he could have said nothing, but you still run a risk (ah, he’s being tight lipped, he’s going to trash me at the hearing). But with all we’ve seen the last 2 weeks, including the addition of Grebs yesterday, it would not surprise me if he has a Plan B – a trade if things don’t work out and it could very well involve one of these extra d-men he’s signed.

    Might be a very exciting weekend.

  23. mumbai max says:

    5.5 x 6 without an NTC is no problem. He will be very tradable at that number especially when the cap goes back up. Just do it. Arbitration is a MUCH worse fate. Then he is gone for almost nothing. This is only money.

  24. major says:

    What if the hold up with Ganger has nothing to do with money??? According to all accounts, both sides were very close 2 months ago. In my experience negotiating, a sudden stall usually means an additional request was added late in the process.
    So what if they’ve pretty much agreed to the salary number, but the Gagner asked for a NTC / NMC late in the negotiation? That’s my thought anyway.

  25. Jesse says:

    At the busiest points of the season the Oilogosphere gives you a big picture of how the team is doing.

    In the weeks following the end of the regular season, you get a further dissection of individual play.

    Free Agency focuses us in on salaries.

    And now in the dog days of summer we’re zeroing in on sphincters.

    Ours is a thorough fanbase.

  26. Lowetide says:

    Sorry folks, I had to delete the movie clip of Duel–seemed to be slowing things down. It’s online, brilliant chase scenes. One of my all time favorite movies, I stop what I’m doing whenever it comes on.

  27. Andropod says:

    Lowetide,

    So this is a South African Valiant story!
    We had a 1955 Volkswagen Beetle to carry around our family of 5 in South Africa, that he traded in 1963 for a Valiant. The beetle had a top speed of “P” in that if you got a long enough downhill with a strong enough tailwind, you get the speedo needle up to the “P in the “MPH” at the bottom of the speedo.
    My Mom loved the Valiant, in South Africa it was considered a big car, and a very nice car, and she felt comfortable up there with the Jones’s. My Dad used it for all of his business trips, but then rolled it trying to avoid someone crossing the road in the middle of nowhere that kept jumping the wrong way as he swerved.
    Seatbelts were not worn then, he was able to hang onto the steering wheel, but the other 3 swirled around like inside a tumble dryer. The only injury other than the pedestrian, was to one of the hitch hikers, who cut their nose on the ashtray on the back of the front bench seat.

    The insurance was enough for him to buy a 1964 Valiant, which he eventually traded in for one of those Volkswagen Variant station wagons, with a trunk in the front and an engine below the back floor.

  28. Maverick says:

    Lowetide:
    Maverick: Is this it?

    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/07/gagners-contract.html

    Yes, thank you Sir.

    Wow, what I said last summer. “One year deal $4m a season. Gives the organization another season to see what shakes out with the up and coming kids. In two years I have a tough time seeing both Hemsky and gagner still members of the oilers.”

    I must have read Tambellini’s tea leaves, but that one year deal was not a great idea, its going to bite them in the butt.

  29. Maverick says:

    Now if there is a “Sail on Samwise” next Friday, how will the blogsphere react??

    (I guess if there is it will depend on the return)

  30. cc says:

    Selling a car story. I lived with a roomate for around 4 years, the guy would go from job to job. Didn’t really have much going on in his life. The last year I was there I told him the next time he gets laid off go to Gov of Canada and tell them you want to be trained in something, anything. So he chose a career in trades, and took the course really seriously. He started turning his life around. At the end of his training he didn’t have much money, but needed a car because he got a job. At this same time my wife to be just got pregnant back in 2006 and the wife didn’t like the hatchback Civic that wasn’t cleaned out in the 8 years I had it and reaked of hockey equipment. There was always a hockey stick, even though it was the summer time and I didn’t play.

    I bought a brand new Sedan for the family and sold my 1997 Civic with no issues to him for 3 cases of beer. I didn’t need the money the car didn’t owe me anything. My wife said there was probably more than $100 dollars worth of change in between the seats. He drove that car for 3.5 more years said the only thing he put in it was gas & oil. He then crashed it and sold it for $200 dollar.

    ————————-

    I wonder if MacT is stockpiling defenseman for trade currency during the deadline. The going rate for a bottom pairing dman is a 2nd round pick – 5th round pick based on Murray. I personally think that Schultz isn’t any worse than Douglas Murray. So this season he has Schultz, Grebeshkov, Potter, Belov, Larsen (RFA), & J. Schultz (RFA). Entering contract years, by mid-year either Klefbom or Marincin should be pushing one or more of those players off the roster. In return the Oilers get 2nd round pick. Essentially making getting back the assett they lost in the Perron deal.

  31. bookje says:

    Maverick: Yes, thank you Sir.

    I must have read Tambellini’s tea leaves, but that one year deal was not a great idea, its going to bite them in the butt.

    A lot of people thought the deal was fine. However, we all forgot that Gagner’s dad was an NHL and Gagner really seems to understand the business side of the NHL. As a result, he gave up every notion of 2-way forward and prioritized his point total in order to get an overpay.

  32. vesci says:

    Lowetide:
    Vesci: Certainly not on this blog. Gagner has always been highly regarded here, even with the knowledge he was young and learning on the job. Sam Gagner is highly thought of pretty much everywhere, although Cult of Hockey is nota fan.

    So the question remains “How much do you pay for that car and can you find a car down the street that maybe on first blush you don’t like as much, but that you may find out may suit your needs just fine for less money”.

    I guess you also better be sure there is another car down the street to buy.

    As for timing and the issue of leverage, if you are going to trade Gagner doesn’t he have more value to a team if you do so sooner than later so that the new team can lock him in to a long term deal?

  33. Lowetide says:

    Vesci: Yes, which is the reason I wrote the article today. :-)

    The thing with Gagner is that he’s a really good fit for the roster–insane passer, creative playmaker–but he’s also a complementary player. So you can’t pay him too, too much. And we are here.

  34. Bushed says:

    Recent rumour stated that Sam’s asking price was 5 X 5.5. Even with a rising cap, that’s too much for two reasons.

    One, it’s too close to Hall’s contract numbers (and I don’t think Sam is that close to Hall ability-wise, longer term). Two, the higher the salary and term, the less trade value he holds moving forward. I still like LT’s earlier suggestion of 4.5 X 5 and no NTC.

    He may have the current leverage re. salary and term, but MacT holds the hammer on whether he stays here. Maybe he reminds Sam that some of Detroit’s cluster took discounts to stay in town–can’t have your cake and eat it too.

    If the current stall is based on a demand for a NTC, go to arbitration and take your lumps for one year, blame it on Tambellini, and trade Sam to Calgary for Giordano +. Feaster will be happy to give him a NTC and then he can watch his old buddies stick it to his team for the next 5 years, and enjoy the chorus of boos every time he appears in Rexall Redux.

    Time to choose, Sammy.

    Time to call the bluff and send a message, MacT.

  35. Hammers says:

    Well we are down to the wire and a back up plan. Maybe the plan all along and it’s upon us . Gags, Petry & next years 1st for Tyutin and Dubinsky / Johnson & Dubinsky and a 2nd . The joys of being a Monday morning quarterback. Thanks Tambellini ( I still say Lowe’s biggest mistake)

  36. denny33 says:

    bookje,

    I think the league watched in horror as the Edmonton oilers continued to sign and play 18 year old kids…..

    What could the possible CBA ramifications be for that action?

    Even Yak last year….

  37. striatic says:

    if i’m MacT i offer Gagner 5×5 and a 2 year NTC.

    NTCs are terrible for contract value, and i am adamantly against full term NTCs, but i think it is fair and relatively harmless to give the player some stability at the beginning of the contract.

  38. denny33 says:

    vesci,

    I have to believe that is exactly what Craig is trying to do ( package Gags for a better fit at 2c )….

    However, like trying to obtain a true #1 D-man – the market is full of GM’s trying to acoomplish the exact same goal.

    Still think Jim Nill stole the show by gettign 21 year old Tyler Seguin….

  39. Jordan says:

    striatic,

    If I’m Gagner, I look at that deal, and say I’m gone in a year.

    5.5×5 and NMC for term.

    It’s not about what’s fair now – it’s about what will be fair next summer, and the summer after, and…

    To be really honest, the more I look at comparables, and when they were signed… I think if they want to sign Gagner to term of 4+, the AAV will be around 6, minus whatever they take off for the NMC.

    Gagner’s got position, and he’s already raised MacT to the limit. Either Craig goes all in on Gagner, or he loses all the time the Oilers invested in him, and they have no centre depth to compensate.

    It’s that simple.

  40. Chris says:

    I think alot of commenters here have gotten revisionist about the Gagner contract from a year ago. If you think back Gagner started last season struggling to put up any points. And his scoring rates were way down aside from the fact he had one good two week span which included an 8 point night that make his numbers look fairly consistent with his previous seasons. But for the majority of 2011-2012 Sam Gagner struggled to be a productive player for the Edmonton Oilers.

    My recollection was that most posters here were onside with taking another year to evaluate Gagner and to see what he was worth. There is an argument that earlier this season they should have tried to lock Gagner up to an extension and I agree with that to some degree.

    However, over all you have to ask what is a 40-50 point player worth to an NHL team especially if he doesn’t bring other elements that teams prize like size, toughness, penalty killing etc? At 4 million we are all probably pretty comfortable, at four and a half okay but at five million for a guy with those numbers its becoming an over payment.

  41. vesci says:

    striatic,

    I agree that this is the line in the sand. As LT said, he is a complimentary player, a good one, but one none the less. He doesn’t drive the play like Hall and if you pay him more than $5MM/yr you really mess up the team salary structure that is being developed.

    As my economics prof once said “it about maximizing utils” and paying Gags more than $5MM/yr doesn’t accomplish this.

  42. G Money says:

    striatic: but i think it is fair and relatively harmless to give the player some stability at the beginning of the contract.

    I have heard that you can’t actually have an NTC/NMC for the RFA portion of a contract.

    Can anyone more versed in the CBA confirm that?

    If that’s the case, then the interesting thing is that stability for Gags would start in the second year of the contract, he would still be exposed to trade in the first year regardless.

  43. LMHF#1 says:

    I wonder what Gagner, Schultz and a good prospect/pick would get you.

  44. Lowetide says:

    Chris:
    I think alot of commenters here have gotten revisionist about the Gagner contract from a year ago. If you think back Gagner started last season struggling to put up any points. And his scoring rates were way down aside from the fact he had one good two week span which included an 8 point night that make his numbers look fairly consistent with his previous seasons. But for the majority of 2011-2012 Sam Gagner struggled to be a productive player for the Edmonton Oilers.

    My recollection was that most posters here were onside with taking another year to evaluate Gagner and to see what he was worth. There is an argument that earlier this season they should have tried to lock Gagner up to an extension and I agree with that to some degree.

    However, over all you have to ask what is a 40-50 point player worth to an NHL team especially if he doesn’t bring other elements that teams prize like size, toughness, penalty killing etc? At 4 million we are all probably pretty comfortable, at four and a half okay but at five million for a guy with those numbers its becoming an over payment.

    Nah. We knew it was going to be expensive

    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/07/gagner-this-is-going-to-be-close.html

  45. striatic says:

    G Money: I have heard that you can’t actually have an NTC/NMC for the RFA portion of a contract.

    you can’t.

    so a 5×5 deal with a 2 year NTC would leave Gagner tradable next season, and untradeable for 2 seasons thereafter.

  46. Lowetide says:

    Oilers agree to terms with Fedun. Poor bastard. That Nystrom injury had a major impact on his NHL career.

  47. goldenchild says:

    Even with Sam in the fold looking at the C depth, if Sam or Nuge miss a couple of weks or so which Center is capable of playing with offensive players and not sink them like an anchor? Without Sam it’s obviously a sinkhole.

    Gordon doesnt seem to be a guy whos skill type would fit that role so if Nuge cant start the year with the current group is it Arcebello? Its not Lander and maybe it is Gordon by default but there really isnt a right answer. That is the big dropoff from Horcoff to Gordon is that horc could play with all types of wingers. It would be nice to see them sign a veteran C who has had some track record of playing with skilled players unless they are convinced Arcebello is that guy.

    Heres a crazy thought, Oilers dont add any vet C’s and Nuge isnt ready for training camp and Marco Roy plays well in his first camp, is there any chance he breaks in? We’ve seen 2nd rd picks surprise before and make better teams than the Oilers and with the Oilers lack of depth at C isnt this at the very least possible?

  48. Lowetide says:

    Goldenchild: They aren’t done at center. Maybe a camp invite or a tweener signing, but they won’t go to camp imo without adding something.

  49. linkfromhyrule says:

    Lowetide,

    I’m just curious, but what was your reaction to the hiring of tambo? Did anyone see that train wreck coming?

  50. speeds says:

    Lowetide, from the article:
    The problem? The Oilers have far more to lose than Sam Gagner.

    I think EDM should really look at signing Grabovski anyways, but if things are not looking that promising on Sunday with Gagner, do you think EDM looks at signing Grabovski prior to things completely playing out with Gagner?

  51. striatic says:

    goldenchild: Heres a crazy thought, Oilers dont add any vet C’s and Nuge isnt ready for training camp and Marco Roy plays well in his first camp, is there any chance he breaks in?

    no. Arcobello would get the call up first based on his play with Hall and Eberle during the lock-out.

  52. Lowetide says:

    speeds: I think EDM should really look at signing Grabovski anyways, but if things arenot looking that promising on Sunday with Gagner, do you think EDM looks at signing Grabovski prior to things completely playing out with Gagner?

    I’m shocked he isn’t signed yet. I expect a team (not the Oilers) have asked him to wait until they clear some room/roster space. Probably Lou, or Van.

  53. goldenchild says:

    Lowetide: Goldenchild: They aren’t done at center. Maybe a camp invite or a tweener signing, but they won’t go to camp imo without adding something.

    Agree its too obvious a hole to not get some help but I wonder if that help is just a tweener or somene with little NHL experience and the kid shows, how twill he new coach and GM handle it. Would they let him stay up for the max games 15 or whatever it is and then send him back to junior? or is it a non starter, no more 18/19 year olds.

  54. striatic says:

    Another stop-gap if RNH isn’t ready for cap is to try moving Hall to C to start the season.

    Not really a long-term solution but a possibility.

    Perron-Hall-Eberle
    Jones-Gagner-Yakupov
    Joensuu-Gordon-Hemsky
    Smyth-Lander-Brown

  55. speeds says:

    Lowetide: I’m shocked he isn’t signed yet. I expect a team (not the Oilers) have asked him to wait until they clear some room/roster space. Probably Lou, or Van.

    Signing Grabovski might well be the proactive thing to do if Gagner can’t be signed longer term. He’d probably come at a lower cap hit and EDM could probably get him signed for 2 or 3 years.

    Then the Oilers become the party with a bit more flexibility. They could trade Gagner now if the right offer cam along, or keep him and trade him at the deadline. They could also keep him throughout the year, but would already have a player signed that could reasonably fill a C spot on the roster so they don’t have to overpay for a #2 C next UFA season, in the case that Gagner won’t sign long term at money they like at some point.

  56. LMHF#1 says:

    striatic:

    Jones-Gagner-Yakupov

    So, we’re giving up before we even start?

  57. Jordan says:

    striatic,

    Just because I’d rather see them build Hemsky’s value towards deadline day…

    Hall – Hemsky – Yakupov
    Perron – Gagner/Grabovski – Eberle
    Jonesuu – Gordon – Jones
    Smyth – Lander – Hamilton

  58. striatic says:

    LMHF#1: So, we’re giving up before we even start?

    essentially.

  59. SpotTheLoon says:

    Lowetide,

    I agree that Gagner is a complementary player. As such, fitting him in the existing team salary structure when he holds so much leverage is going to be problematic. I could see MacT offering 4.5 but Gagner asking for 5.5. It is coming down to the sort of negotiation you illustrated in your article.

    My guess is MacT will do everything humanly possible to get agreement, even if it is for something like 3 years. That said, I have a distinct feeling MacT has worked hard at finding a trade partner in the event things don’t go as anticipated.

    If it weren’t for the last minute, nothing would get done in this world. And I do suspect that the odds are an even split at this point as to whether Gagner is an Oiler by this time next week. The one thing that MacT wisely wants is options, which is evident in his list of D additions. I expect that he has various options available. If it becomes evident an agreement can’t be reached, I expect a trade to happen before arbitration to give the new team a chance to negotiate a contract.

  60. Jordan says:

    Lowetide: I’m shocked he isn’t signed yet. I expect a team (not the Oilers) have asked him to wait until they clear some room/roster space. Probably Lou, or Van.

    But that’s great news for the Oilers, isn’t it?

    The only way they get Gagner is if they overpay him. If they sheet him for more than 5M, the Oilers get a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in compensation, and can go sign Grabovski for the same money or less.

    If they sign him for less, you keep him.

    Win-Win.

    Hell, now I hope there’s an offer – Grabo plus the extra picks would be a lateral move at C, and free pciks!

  61. khildahl says:

    Given the state of UFA contracts in today’s NHL, I don’t think it’s at all unreasonable to say Gagner could get 5.5 x 5 next summer if he goes to the market. MacT needs to decide if he’s willing to pay the market price (as inflated as it may be), because he isn’t going to get him for any less.

    A few GMs with big budgets and small brains have completely destroyed the value scale in the league.

  62. russ99 says:

    Jordan:
    striatic,

    Just because I’d rather see them build Hemsky’s value towards deadline day…

    Hall – Hemsky – Yakupov

    AKA – the “EA Sports” line. Those three players are so well-suited for each other it’s ridiculous.

    Which is why it won’t happen. Plus Hall’s not moving to center. When you have a difference-maker at a specific position, you don’t move him to a place where he may not be one.

  63. russ99 says:

    Jordan,

    There’s nothing out there that says Grabovski – who made $6M last year – will take a pay cut. He’s probably the best UFA available and can set his price. Which is probably why he hasn’t signed yet – no offers to his liking.

    Personally, I think Gagner is a safer bet at less than $6M.

  64. commonfan14 says:

    denny33:
    bookje,

    I think the league watched in horror as the Edmonton oilers continued to sign and play 18 year old kids…..

    What could the possible CBA ramifications be for that action?

    Even Yak last year….

    Are you saying that Yak didn’t belong last year, or that most or even any other NHL team would have left him in Russia?

    Would any team have left Hall in Windsor?

    The Oilers have thrown 4 kids right into the league in the last 10 years, Gags and the 3 #1s.

    Every forward taken first overall comes right in because they’re just undeniably ready, or they wouldn’t have gone where they did. Nuge was probably the closest thing to a F project taken in that spot in forever just because of his build (and I think the Oilers actually intended to send him back to Red Deer), but his play made it clear that he belonged anyway.

    I also don’t buy the idea that smart teams always let guys develop slowly and would do so no matter what. Smart teams are usually good and don’t get to draft the super-gifted kids, but when a strong team like Boston got the chance to draft #2, we saw Seguin start right away.

    So if you throw the 3 #1s out, we’re down to Gags as the lone 1st rounder who started early. It’s become an accepted truth now that that was a mistake, but there was not a ton of debate at the time about whether he’d legitimately made the team, and then he went on to a rookie year on par to the one everyone was happy with from Eberle a few years later. And I know it killed his development, yet here he is as a player who some think can command upwards of $5 million per year.

    It’s also not like guys picked in his range have never started right away since. Carolina and Philly weren’t scared off by the cautionary tale that is Sam Gagner’s career when they started Skinner and Couturier right away.

    My point is that I think this characterization of the Oilers as a team that always irresponsibly throws 18 year olds to the wolves (with associated concerns that Nurse will make the team because Oilers) is unwarranted.

    There are a ton of things to criticize the team about, but I don’t think it’s really fair to bring this up as one of them.

  65. G Money says:

    Jordan: If they sheet him for more than 5M, the Oilers get a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in compensation, and can go sign Grabovski for the same money or less.

    I don’t believe you can offer sheet a player (if that’s what you’re referring to) once he’s filed for arbitration.

  66. till_horcoff_is_coach says:

    I like Gagner and feel he is a solid 2C, but based on on-ice play, I’d think grabovski better suits this team than Gagner. Remember the talk of moving him to wing? He is a very talented player but has gaps.

    Of course attitude, history, and contracts change things but I don’t think Gagner has all the leverage here.

    I think it was also good of mact to make it known he values Gagner and what he has brought all along, but at the same time if gags is chasing demands that upset team contract structure then there are other solid options. Hall left money on the table to lead the oilers.. no use letting Gagner set a new precedent.

  67. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    The Oilers schedule is out:

    http://oilers.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=678251

  68. G Money says:

    Ribs:
    Tyler’s take – Betting On Gagner

    Reading the article, two things spring to mind:

    - His suggestion of 5 x $5.25M is probably reasonable, but it wouldn’t surprise me if Sammy’s asking for a lot more, and that would be the heart of the problem – too much uncertainty for that kind of cash

    - Looking at the list of 23-year old scorers – just how freakin’ good is Taylor Hall? (For ref, at 21 y.o., his PPG was 1.11)

  69. wordbird says:

    Lowetide,

    liked your idea the other day of bringing in Dan Cleary.

  70. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Tim Wharnsby ‏@WharnsbyCBC 7m

    NHL’s new division names: Pacific, Central, Metropolitan and Atlantic.

  71. godot10 says:

    A one year deal between the Oilers and Gagner is actually in the best interest of both sides.

    The Oilers have the Taylor Hall salary cap in place. The maximum Gagner can demand next year from the Oilers is $6 million, so the Oilers risk in a one year deal is minimal. To sign him now long term, they probably have to offer $5.5 million. So another one year contract just de-risks any future Gagner long term contract further.

    From Gagner’s perspective. He’s 23 going on 24, and still believes in his own ability and potential, and he’s not going to sign that away. Considering what other centres have gotten as UFA’s this year, he would be nuts to settle for less than $5.5 million on a long term deal at this point.

    Joe Flacco and the Ravens had really small differences, but Joe Flacco decided to go all in playing out the last year of his contract, rather than signing a long term extension that he felt didn’t reflect his value.

    I hope they settle on the steps of the arbitration hearing for 1 year and $5 million, and that will be a good deal for both sides.

  72. Lucinius says:

    Dead Cat Bounce:
    Tim Wharnsby ‏@WharnsbyCBC 7m

    NHL’s new division names: Pacific, Central, Metropolitan and Atlantic.

    Fucking horrible names.

    Only way to properly articulate my feelings on the matter.

  73. LMHF#1 says:

    Dead Cat Bounce:
    Tim Wharnsby ‏@WharnsbyCBC 7m

    NHL’s new division names: Pacific, Central, Metropolitan and Atlantic.

    In case we didn’t know the NHL is run by absolute morons…

    This wasn’t difficult. Adams, Patrick, Norris, Smythe. Done.

    Morons.

  74. Oilanderp says:

    My gob, sign him for 5 to 5.5/yr for as many years as you can get. That contract will be exceptional value in a few years. People say he is a complementary player as if that is a bad thing. We already have all of the river-pushers we need on the front end. Gagner is a sublime passer and his play will magnify the results of our thoroughbreds. Does he want a NMC? Give it to him! Gags seems to have the exact attitude and drive that we want on this team. Going forward, even if the Oil decide he is not what they want at center, he still makes a great winger.

    Stop looking over the fence and comparing grass-colours.
    Sign baby Gagner, and do it now you fools!

  75. Woodguy says:

    Oiler finish with 10 of their last 13 at home. Nice

    Oilers have 7 back to backs on the road. 2 in Oct, 2 in Nov, 1 each in Jan, Feb and Mar

    All 4 back to backs at “home” are first game in Edmonton, then second game in either Calgary or Vancouver.

    Longest Road Trip is 6 games:

    SAT, 12 OCT 2013 OILERS MAPLE LEAFS
    5:00 PM CBC
    MON, 14 OCT 2013 OILERS CAPITALS
    5:00 PM
    TUE, 15 OCT 2013 OILERS PENGUINS
    5:00 PM
    THU, 17 OCT 2013 OILERS ISLANDERS
    5:00 PM
    SAT, 19 OCT 2013 OILERS SENATORS
    12:00 PM
    TUE, 22 OCT 2013 OILERS CANADIENS
    5:30 PM

    A few 4 game road trips.

    Pretty good schedule, all things considered.

  76. linkfromhyrule says:

    Woodguy,

    yeah I think 11 or the first 14 games in October are against teams which were in the playoffs last year. It will be a good test of our off-season moves.

    I have to say I love the fact that every team will play each other at least twice this season. Makes things much more interesting!!

  77. Woodguy says:

    There will be almost a month with hockey at Rexall.

    Jan 29 at home vs Sharks.

    Next home game is Feb 27th vs the Wild.

    After the Sharks game Oilers go on a 4 game roadie out East, and then the Olympic break happens.

    How many Oilers will play in the Olympics?

    I think:

    Hall
    Smid
    Hemsky (if he’s here)

    Have good odds of playing

    Not super long shots to make it, but not favorites:

    Petry
    Belov
    Yak (if he comes out of the gates flying)

  78. bookje says:

    Dead Cat Bounce:
    Tim Wharnsby ‏@WharnsbyCBC 7m

    NHL’s new division names: Pacific, Central, Metropolitan and Atlantic.

    Apple, Orange, Firetruck, and Banana

  79. Woodguy says:

    linkfromhyrule:
    Woodguy,

    yeah I think 11 or the first 14 games in October are against teams which were in the playoffs last year. It will be a good test of our off-season moves.

    I have to say I love the fact that every team will play each other at least twice this season. Makes things much more interesting!!

    Not seeing some teams from the East for years was the worst decision in Bettman’s tenure.

    Glad its fixed.

    That 6 game roadie comes right in mid October vs some decent teams.

    They come back .500 from that and it will bode well for the year.

  80. Woodguy says:

    bookje: Apple, Orange, Firetruck, and Banana

    Blue, Green, Horse, Yellow.

  81. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Strombone ‏@strombone1 13m

    When does the schedule for the KHL get released??? I kid I kid…….

  82. Woodguy says:

    bookje: Apple, Orange, Firetruck, and Banana

    Duck, Goose, Microchip, Swan

  83. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Woodguy: Not seeing some teams from the East for years was the worst decision in Bettman’s tenure.

    Glad its fixed.

    That 6 game roadie comes right in mid October vs some decent teams.

    They come back .500 from that and it will bode well for the year.

    What if they don’t?

  84. striatic says:

    9 of 13 on the road in october.

    yikes. probably without RNH too.

  85. Kitchener says:

    My guess on MacT’s thinking:

    IF Gagner signs the current offer (whatever it is), good.

    IF Gagner doesn’t sign, then don’t budge, go to arbitration & pay whatever arbitrator says.

    THEN, next season:
    – IF a fantastic trade offer presents itself, take it.
    – IF Gagner plays unbelievably well, use the leverage and trade him OR spend up to $6M/yr on an extension if Gagner deserves it.
    – IF Gagner plays so-so, use that new leverage and offer him a new deal below $5.

    Bottom line:
    – The timing on Gagner’s contract worked out such that no-one knows if he’s a 4, 5, or 6 million dollar player. The situation isn’t great, but MacT has less to lose by sticking to his price-point until Gagner proves he’s worth the bigger contract. It might backfire, but there’s still 12 months to trade the contract as a backup plan.
    - A long-term deal offered 1 or 2 years ago would have solved all this, but now that we’re here, I’d argue that MacT still has a little leverage and he’s going to use it.

    —-

    OILANDERP: I’m with you – sign the guy and get on with it.

  86. Woodguy says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: What if they don’t?

    Armageddon

  87. linkfromhyrule says:

    striatic,

    Oh crap, I hadn’t even thought of him not being there… this could end badly

    Does anybody know anything about RNH’s injury progress?!

  88. Oilanderp says:

    Gagner…… to YakupovonetimerSCOOOOORRRRESSSSSS!

    I could get used to hearing that. MacT…. engage!

  89. Pablo Aimar says:

    If Gagner won’t sign long term for 5m at most then Mac T needs to trade him. 5.5 is a joke.

  90. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Andy Strickland ‏@andystrickland 2m

    Chris Stewart two-yr extension with #stlblues is imminent, totaling just north of $8 million #NHL

    Chris Stewart – 18G 18A 36P Cap hit $4M

    Sam Gagner – 14G 24A 38P Cap hit ???

  91. Factotum says:

    bookje,

    John, Paul, Darjeeling, Ringo

  92. fifthcartel says:

    I’m not sure which the Oilers can’t afford more, signing Gagner for 5M+ or not having Gagner on the roster.

  93. Andropod says:

    Does this thing with Gags have any parallels with trading Smythe over a $350k gap? Look what that did to the team. Smythe may not have been their best player but was widely regarded as the heart & soul of the tem for his dedication and work ethic.
    Or to losing Glencross the way we did?

  94. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Darren Dreger ‏@DarrenDreger 1m

    2 year deal for Stewart with Blues. $4.1 mil and $4.2 mil.

  95. striatic says:

    i <3 Nail Yakupov

    https://twitter.com/Nail10_1993/statuses/358288507468402689

    may he never change.

  96. Woodguy says:

    NHL on TSN ‏@NHLonTSN 56s
    Edmonton Oilers agree to terms with Taylor Fedun on a one-year contract. #TSN #NHL

  97. serum114 says:

    I’m not too concerned over this whole thing.

    I think the Oil and Gagner are trying to squeeze every extra dollar they can out of it, but in the end Gagner wants to be here and be paid for what he is–a very good, young, 2nd line C. That Dellow article lays out his relative historical value quite well. When he sees a guy like Weiss get paid 5 per, and he knows he’s a year away from likely 6 or more on the open market, he’s not going to capitulate for the sake of it.

    Similarly, the Oilers know his value to the team: age, position, production, respect in the room. They also know that they won’t go over 6 for him (the internal Hall cap). Furthermore, they’re fully aware that the cap will be rising over the course of that contract and player salaries rising along with it.

    If I had to put money down, I’d bet on a 6 year, 33 mil deal (5.5 per) being announced with some form of a limited NTC over the life of the deal. It may seem steep to some now, but in 2 years even, 5.5 mil for a 50-60 point center who can anchor an above average second scoring unit will be market value, if not a bargain.

    I’m confident both sides know that, and that before the hearing happens we see a deal in that ballpark.

    My 2 cents…

  98. Lowetide says:

    Good to see you, Serum. Interesting set (6 x 5.5), I didn’t want that long of a term but with the cap rising that might be a bargain in year three.

  99. Jordan says:

    Woodguy: Duck, Goose, Microchip, Swan

    Willis, Mitchell, Spector, Zona

  100. Tarkus says:

    Jordan: Willis, Mitchell, Spector, Zona

    Who are four people who have never been in my kitchen?

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/1/15/Cliff_Clavin_Jeopardy.jpg

  101. Jordan says:

    Tarkus: Who are four people who have never been in my kitchen?

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/1/15/Cliff_Clavin_Jeopardy.jpg

    What you don’t know won’t hurt you. Until you find out.

  102. Woodguy says:

    serum114:
    I’m not too concerned over this whole thing.

    I think the Oil and Gagner are trying to squeeze every extra dollar they can out of it, but in the end Gagner wants to be here and be paid for what he is–a very good, young, 2nd line C. That Dellow article lays out his relative historical value quite well. When he sees a guy like Weiss get paid 5 per, and he knows he’s a year away from likely 6 or more on the open market, he’s not going to capitulate for the sake of it.

    Similarly, the Oilers know his value to the team: age, position, production, respect in the room. They also know that they won’t go over 6 for him (the internal Hall cap). Furthermore, they’re fully aware that the cap will be rising over the course of that contract and player salaries rising along with it.

    If I had to put money down, I’d bet on a 6 year, 33 mil deal (5.5 per) being announced with some form of a limited NTC over the life of the deal. It may seem steep to some now, but in 2 years even, 5.5 mil for a 50-60 point center who can anchor an above average second scoring unit will be market value, if not a bargain.

    I’m confident both sides know that, and that before the hearing happens we see a deal in that ballpark.

    My 2 cents…

    Good post.

    I think the deal will get done.

    He wants to be here, they want him.

    Gagner’s agent knows he holds the hammer and he’s using it, as that’s his job.

  103. Truth says:

    Woodguy:

    How many Oilers will play in the Olympics?

    I think:

    Hall
    Smid
    Hemsky (if he’s here)

    Have good odds of playing

    Not super long shots to make it, but not favorites:

    Petry
    Belov
    Yak (if he comes out of the gates flying)

    I wouldn’t count out Eberle. He was used about twice as much as Hall was at the WC last year.

  104. Zipdot says:

    bookje: Apple, Orange, Firetruck, and Banana

    Michaelangelo, Leonardo, Banksy, Donatello

  105. godot10 says:

    Dead Cat Bounce:
    Andy Strickland ‏@andystrickland 2m

    Chris Stewart two-yr extension with #stlblues is imminent, totaling just north of $8 million #NHL

    Chris Stewart – 18G 18A 36P Cap hit $4M

    Sam Gagner – 14G 24A 38P Cap hit ???

    Chris Stewart has had 40 points once, pro-rated twice in his career (can you say inconsistent), and he is two years older than Gagner (less upside potential) and he is in a good situation.

    Gagner has never had below 40 points in his career and has as many 50 plus pro-rated seasons as Stewart, and is two years younger. (can you say consistent).

    Stewart clearer has less belief in his own upside potential. Gagner is going “Joe Flacco”.

  106. khildahl says:

    Zipdot: Michaelangelo, Leonardo, Banksy, Donatello

    I’m just going to call them all “Bruce” to avoid confusion.

  107. Amadeus says:

    godot10,

    Chris Stewart had:

    64 Pts in 2010 (28 Goals)
    53 Pts in 2011 (28 Goals)
    36 Pts (48 Games) in 2013 (18 Goals)

    I would rather have Stewart than Gagner…
    Especially with the fact that McTavish is contemplating Gagner on the Right Wing.

    It’s a good comparable for the Oilers to use.

    I would offer $4.7M/year on a two year contract.
    (Gagner is two years younger, but both players give up one year of RFA and one year of UFA)

  108. Doomoil says:

    godot10: Chris Stewart has had 40 points once, pro-rated twice in his career (can you say inconsistent), and he is two years older than Gagner (less upside potential) and he is in a good situation.

    Gagner has never had below 40 points in his career and has as many 50 plus pro-rated seasons as Stewart, and is two years younger.(can you say consistent).

    Stewart clearer has less belief in his own upside potential.Gagner is going “Joe Flacco”.

    this is the second time you’ve mentioned flacco.

    joe flacco’s contract is horrendous and has already cost the ravens the ability to resign core players. the ravens will be hamstrung by his contract until the day he is released.

    if sam gagner wants the flacco, jettison him as quickly as possible.

  109. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Amadeus:
    godot10,

    Chris Stewart had:

    64 Pts in 2010 (28 Goals)
    53 Pts in 2011 (28 Goals)
    36 Pts (48 Games) in 2013 (18 Goals)

    I would rather have Stewart than Gagner…
    Especially with the fact that McTavish is contemplating Gagner on the Right Wing.

    It’s a good comparable for the Oilers to use.

    I would offer $4.7M/year on a two year contract.
    (Gagner is two years younger, but both players give up one year of RFA and one year of UFA)

    This.

    Stewart has one 60+ point season. (with 28 goals)

    Gagner has never broken the 50 point mark (or 20 goals).

    Stewart had one down season while adjusting to Ken Hitchcock’s “win 1-0″ style of coaching.,

    Stewart plays the toughs and scores (3rd toughest QC)

    Gagner plays second level competition and, except for one season, gets handily outscored.

    Stewart is 6’2″ 230.

    Gagner isn’t.

  110. Bank Shot says:

    Ribeiro just signed for $5.5 and he has outproduced Gagner by a huge margin every year for the last 4-5. Derek Roy @ 4. Weiss and Filpula @ 5.

    All have produced at higher rates in their careers and Weiss and Filpula have more intangibles.

    All in all, small offense only players aren’t that highly valued around the league. I’ll be pretty disappointed if the Oilers give Gagner more then 5 per year. If they have to take him to arbitration next and replace him next season, so be it. Playing in the Oilers top six will likely be a pretty nice sell to free agents as soon as next year.

  111. Undisclosed_Personal_Reasons says:

    That’s a great deal for STL on Stewart and works in MacT’s favour.

    The Godfather, Scarface, Two for the Money, Heat

  112. Магия¹º says:

    Habitually goes right up to the arbitration deadline. NHL Dad has been on both sides of the table. This kid is leaving not one nickel on the table. Might be as keen on the 1 year pathway to Free Agency as Papelbon was.

  113. LoDog says:

    Amadeus:
    godot10,

    Chris Stewart had:

    64 Pts in 2010 (28 Goals)
    53 Pts in 2011 (28 Goals)
    36 Pts (48 Games) in 2013 (18 Goals)

    I would rather have Stewart than Gagner…
    Especially with the fact that McTavish is contemplating Gagner on the Right Wing.

    It’s a good comparable for the Oilers to use.

    I would offer $4.7M/year on a two year contract.
    (Gagner is two years younger, but both players give up one year of RFA and one year of UFA)

    I would also much rather have Stewart than Gagner.If he doesnt want to sign for that, trade him.

  114. G Money says:

    LoDog: I would also much rather have Stewart than Gagner.If he doesnt want to sign for that, trade him.

    Right, because no player will ever ask for more to play for the Oilers than the Blues – that about right?

    Also – recent years always count for more than older years. Whatever else happened, Gagner outscored Stewart *last* season.

  115. Jordan says:

    God, the temptation to troll everyone and claim Gagner’s signed for 6M per for 6 is so strong right now.

  116. G Money says:

    I’m mystified by folks who point to a contract that a player – usually a player who scored less than Gagner did last year – signs for $x to play in a warm weather city or on a contender (or worst of all, a contender in a warm weather city) and then believe that somehow forms a comparable for the Oilers.

    Take that contract, add $0.5M for the “teams that suck” premium, and then add another $0.5M for “cities where it gets really cold” premium – now you have your Oiler comparable.

    Gagner ain’t signing here for <$5M, and *no other comparable* centre is either.

  117. khildahl says:

    There’s another potential Gagner option (though I don’t see it happening for a number of reasons):

    Wait for the arbitrator’s decision and then walk away from it if it’s too high. If no other team signs him for the kind of money he wants, get him for less. It could work now with teams having already spent their money.

    Strikes me as a pretty dickish move that would send a bad message to players, so I don’t think we’ll ever see it happen.

  118. Captain Smarmy says:

    Man I’m torn on Gagner. I believe the cap is going to go up but the dollar is probably going to go down a bit and we don’t really know what the Katz cap is. (Will the Oilers spend to a 70 million cap with a 90 cent dollar?)

    Hall, Eberle, RNH, Yakupov.

    I would imagine that the majority of fans would say those four come before Gagner. Gagner is very much a complimentary player. Taylor Hall signed a contract that guaranteed him a lot of money long term but he knew he’d likely be leaving money on the table if he stayed healthy and was the player he knew he could be.

    I don’t think Sam Gagner has any right to demand full value in the face of the Taylor Hall deal and stay an Edmonton Oiler.

    If people think Eberle is overpaid @ 6 million what does paying Gagner 5.5 say? Can the team survive two overpays like that when we all know RNH and Nail are going to get paid? Can we get RNH and Nail to take Taylor Hall deals if Gagner gets that kind of money?

  119. commonfan14 says:

    This “Hall cap” thing gets mentioned a lot for a policy that was introduced under a former GM, especially since it was never actually introduced as a policy.

    It’s silly to think Hall will still be the highest paid Oiler in 5 years. What if Yak pots 50 next year?

  120. LoDog says:

    G Money: Right, because no player will ever ask for more to play for the Oilers than the Blues – that about right?

    Also – recent years always count for more than older years.Whatever else happened, Gagner outscored Stewart *last* season.

    In that oh so important most recent year Gagner outscored him by two points.

  121. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    G Money: Right, because no player will ever ask for more to play for the Oilers than the Blues – that about right?

    Also – recent years always count for more than older years.Whatever else happened, Gagner outscored Stewart *last* season.

    By 2 points.

    And Stewart scored 18 goals to Gagner’s 14.

    Goals are worth more than assists…always have been and always will be as long as they award 2 assists for almost every goal.

    Stewart also outperformed Gagner P/60 5V5:

    Stewart – 2.17

    Gagner – 1.84

    P/60 5V4

    Stewart – 6.55

    Gagner – 6.15

  122. Maggie the Monkey says:

    Never mind all this nonsensical chatter about Gagner – check out the rest of this video of “Jumpy the dog”:

    http://www.flixxy.com/jumpy-the-dog.htm?utm_source=nl

    Dogs are awesome. Especially this one.

  123. Магия¹º says:

    bookje: Apple, Orange, Firetruck, and Banana

    Might as well have done Central, Metropolitan, Bolshoi, and La Scala.
    Players want to play in “The Met” to reduce nights away from home.

  124. G Money says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: Goals are worth more than assists…always have been and always will be as long as they award 2 assists for almost every goal.

    Of course they are – except when an Oiler scores them, then something else like +- or size is worth more, correct? You’ll have to point out to me the particular clause in the CBA … I’m assuming there is a special DCB version.

    So, assuming for a moment that we compare the last TWO seasons of Stewart vs Gagner:

    Stewart: 79 g / 30 pts, 48 g / 36 pts
    Gagner: 75 g / 47 pts, 48 g / 38 pts

    AND one player is two years younger than the other. Gagner has outscored Stewart 85 pts to 66 over the last two seasons. That’s massive.

    So what’s the objective (i.e. non Cap’n) arbitrator’s valuation of the two?

    The question is not whether Gagner gets more money than Stewart – its HOW MUCH more.

    Add in the ~$1M premium that a player is going to want to play in Edmonton for the Oilers vs in St Louis for the Blues – and hey, you get to about $5.5M.

    Sounds right.

    Doesn’t necessarily make sense for the Oilers, but that’s probably the numbers they are looking at.

    Mental exercise for the “contract comparables” types – how much does Stewart demand to sign in Edmonton?

  125. Lowetide says:

    Maggie the Monkey:
    Never mind all this nonsensical chatter about Gagner – check out the rest of this video of “Jumpy the dog”:

    http://www.flixxy.com/jumpy-the-dog.htm?utm_source=nl

    Dogs are awesome.Especially this one.

    I love that dog!

  126. khildahl says:

    Lowetide: I love that dog!

    That’s nothing… I trained mine to sleep on command (she’s dedicated and practices often) and to fart on company.

  127. lazerguidedmelody says:

    Tomorrow, I’m expecting MacT trades Gagner, N Schultz and a 3rd for Gareth Bale

  128. Jordan says:

    lazerguidedmelody,

    Bwahahahaha… If you thought the Oilers had difficulty with the cap now, just imagine how bad it would be if they spent twice the cap on one player – And had to pay him in pounds!

    That was great. Thanks!

  129. TheOtherJohn says:

    I sure hope the cap goes up like everybody says, because if it doesn’t Gagner @$5m+ over multiple years with a NM/NTC could be a colossal boat anchor (potentially both unaffordable & unmoveable). That assumes the consensus is Hall, Yak, RNH, Eberle & JSchu are each better players. Paying a SCF calibre goalie will also cost $ 4-5m. So if we pay the first 4 $6m per, Schultz $5.5m and a goalie $4-5m plus Gagner $5+m, at a $65m cap we have $26m left for the other 16 players (or $1.625m per) At $70m we have $1.935m for everybody else. Not a lot of $$

    Kinda highlights just how smart the Oilers have to be on contracts moving forward. Or if the salary cap hits $75-80-85m it really does become irrelevant

    As to the salary cap “Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future”. Hope everyone’s predictions are right

  130. Lewis Grant says:

    Joe Flacco and the Ravens had really small differences, but Joe Flacco decided to go all in playing out the last year of his contract, rather than signing a long term extension that he felt didn’t reflect his value.

    Yeah, and the Ravens will regret that one for a long, long time. Flacco was like the Fernando Pisani of the NFL.

    After the Roughriders won the 2007 Grey Cup, their league MVP QB demanded a big raise. They said no, traded him, and still went to the Grey Cup two of the next three years.

  131. 83 days says:

    Hey LT,

    I’ve got the 1972 edition of that beautiful blue Valiant, slant six and all parked on my farm. Haven’t had her going in a little while but it does run- though I suppose I don’t need to specify, can you ever really kill a slant six? Want to buy it for $16,000? lol

  132. Lowetide says:

    83 days:
    Hey LT,

    I’ve got the 1972 edition of that beautiful blue Valiant, slant six and all parked on my farm. Haven’t had her going in a little while but it does run- though I suppose I don’t need to specify, can you ever really kill a slant six? Want to buy it for $16,000? lol

    Slant 6. Man. That takes me back. When I was little, my Dad had a flathead Ford, then the slant 6 and then some British thing (Voxall? Don’t remember). But those cars went forever.

  133. Hammers says:

    TheOtherJohn:
    I sure hope the cap goes up like everybody says, because if it doesn’t Gagner @$5m+ over multiple years with a NM/NTC could be a colossal boat anchor (potentially both unaffordable & unmoveable). That assumes the consensus is Hall, Yak, RNH, Eberle & JSchu are each better players. Paying a SCF calibre goalie will also cost $ 4-5m. So if we pay the first 4 $6m per, Schultz $5.5m and a goalie $4-5mplus Gagner $5+m, at a $65m cap we have $26m left for the other 16 players (or $1.625m per) At $70m we have $1.935m for everybody else. Not a lot of $$

    Kinda highlights just how smart the Oilers have to be on contracts moving forward. Or if the salary cap hits $75-80-85mit really does become irrelevant

    As to the salary cap “Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future”. Hope everyone’s predictions are right

    That’s why we should have kept Paarvi . $ 1.5 probably for 3 years. Looks like McT is trying to get best value from his “D” and so far so good .

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