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Canada Hockey

Worst NHL Contracts

Posted by sxeraven on 2009.01.27 at 19:01
I read it in Puck Daddy's Yahoo!Sports Blog.

And had to comment, and add my two cents.


Worst Contracts, based on opinion, term, age, value, production, salary cap, etc...

The worst NHL contracts according to his blog are broken down into categories.
Necessary Evils such as Shawn Horcoff on the Oilers, a $5.5 mil/year cap hit until 2015. Expensive, long, but he's entering his prime and is, according to Puck Daddy, an "offensive dynamo". And Brian Campbell, a hit of $7.1 mil/year until 2016, but that's bidding wars.

The Unforseen Boondoggies / Boggles like Jean-Sebastien Giguere for $6 mil/year to 2011. But did the Ducks really know that two backups would be giving him a run for the starting job when they signed him?

The Worst Contracts in Hockey, no questions asked --the absolute disaster contracts -- such as Sean Avery for the Stars, at $3.8/mil until 2011/2012. And the blatantly obvious Rick DiPietro for the Islanders. Fifteen years at $4.5 mil/year... and DiPietro's as fragile as fine china.

Additional from Puck Daddy:

Wade Redden, NYR, $6.5 mil/year until 2014
Dainus Zubrus, NJD, $3.4 mil/year (until 2013 makes it worse)
Ryan Smyth, COL, $6.2 mil/year to 2012

I have to say on the Ryan Smyth deal, #1, yes, it's a lot of money to be throwing at a guy who's 32 and is leading the team in points by default. However, you have to figure another team would have shelled out that much or more for him considering that he's a consummate team player, a tough, gritty player who can grind it out along the boards or play finesse depending on who he's on a line with, and a guy with experience at nearly all levels of the game. For a team like the Avs, considering their veteran leadership without Smyth would have been coming from Joe Sakic, who's out now and isn't guaranteed to be there for many more years, it's probably even more important to have a guy like Smyth on the roster.

Ok... now... other bad contracts:

Scott Gomez, NYR, $7.3 mil/year until 2013. This for a guy who has one power play goal this year, and who isn't cut out for the Rangers team (not his fault) because he's far too fast for anyone else on the roster to keep up with. That, and he was highly overrated with the Devils, and thus highly overpaid with the Rangers. Of course, the Rangers overpay most everyone.

I swear that Vanek at a hit of $7.1/year for Buffalo is a bad contract. Last year it was obviously bad. This year, not so much, but I still think it's bad. Especially until 2014.

Tom Gilbert, EDM, $4.0 mi/year until 2014 for a career -3 with 64 points is a contract I'm not terribly fond of. Then, I don't really follow the Oilers, so perhaps I shouldn't pass judgment. And I think that Visnovsky for $5.6/mil a year until 2013 is worse.

$5.7/mil a year until 2011 is just way, way too much for the likes of Bryan "minus" McCabe.

For everyone who complains about Legwand, $4.5 mil/year until 2015 for Martin Erat isn't great shakes either.

The Devils, who used to be so good about this... well, not only do they have Dainius Zubrus, who is entirely useless, but they have Brian Rolston signed for $5 mil/year through 2012, and he's 35 years old and probably not worth $5 mil a year anyway. They're also paying Bryce Salvador $2.9 mil/year through 2012.

Ottawa has Mike Fisher (who is a -12 this year with 15 points) until 2013 at a hit of $4.2 mil/ year. They are also paying Jason Spezza $7 mil/year until 2015, though I suppose that falls into the 'necessary evil' category, because he is going to put up the points of a $7 mil a year player, but his play in his own end is possibly worse than Ilya Kovalchuk's.

Puck Daddy said it, and I'll agree completely, $7mil cap hit for Briere until 2015 is way too much. I thought so when the Flyers initially signed him. And especially with Cater coming up the way he has.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic, SJ, at $3.1 mil/year until 2013

Eric Brewer, STL at $4.25 mi/year until 2011 is just mind-boggling. Barret Jackman at $3.6 mil/year until 2012 is just as baffling.

Jeff Finger (TOR) at $3.5 mil/year until 2012

Sami Salo (VAN) at $3.5 mil/year until 2012

Alexander Ovechkin, WAS, $9.5 mil/year until 2021. Sure. $9.5 mil/year for Ovechkin's services is quite worth it, and comparable to players in his class. My issue is not with the cap hit, or Ovechkin's age (he's only 22). It's with the length of the contract. How do you sign anyone for 12 or 13 years? This is slightly less ridiculous as the Isles' contract with DiPietro (because Ovechkin is not a goalie, and doesn't appear to be made of glass). But it's still ridiculous. So many things could happen in that amount of time. Injury. Maybe he just loses his touch. Or he loses his desire. Or he turns into a distraction. And it makes it terribly hard to move him should something like that happen, or should money under the cap become that much of a problem. Sign him for $10 mil a year. It's Ovechkin. He's absolutely incredible. Beyond incredible. But for 5 years or something. Not 13.


Other contracts you think are ridiculous?


lady_lilith at 2009-01-28 01:27 (UTC) (Link)
Are you kidding?! Do you watch the Devils at all? Do you watch any of these players? I disagree completely with about 3/4 of what you said. I can go through one-by-one if you want. But yikes! Really off.
sxeraven at 2009-01-28 01:44 (UTC) (Link)
I unfortunately do watch the Devils. Far too often considering I have season tickets. I personally don't like Brodeur, but objectively I'm not putting him on this list. He is worth it, irrespective of what I think of him. I also watch the Sabres, and I'm sorry if you disagree on Zubrus, but he is painfully not worth what he is being paid. Although I am willing to wait to pass judgment on him, because the Devils do seem to have this ability to make incredibly mediocre players halfway decent when playing for them, so maybe the Devils is just what Zubrus needs. Or vice versa.

I tend to think most defensemen are overpaid, mostly because salaries for defensemen have just ballooned over the last few years.

I also think a lot of this is going to really come back to bite some teams with the economy going the way it is. So it's probably a lot easier to say contracts are bad right now.

I don't watch much of the Blues, mostly because I don't want to. Brewer never impressed me, not even with Edmonton. And I said when I commented on Gilbert and Visnovsky that I don't follow the Oilers.

Vanek I suppose I could give the benefit of the doubt to, but in watching him for pretty much every game for the last 2 full seasons and most of this season? There's a reason I call him 'over'. And i'd love for him to prove that he's worth it, but I don't think he is. That, and I think the Sabres could have far better spent the money they're giving to him.

Gomez I stand by everything I said.

Finger I watched with Colorado. Not worth $3.5 mil a season.

Salo is hurt, pretty much for half the season every season, like clockwork. Any player on the shelf as much as he is isn't worth what he's being paid, I don't care if their name is Sidney Crosby or Alexander Ovechkin.

Spezza being bad in his own end is something even the Ottawa Senators have been vocal about, so that's just stating fact. He is worth it in the sense he's going to put up the points, and he's a hell of a playmaker, but when your team is looking to move you and specifically has complaints about your play in your own end? It could be a problem. So okay, he's probably worth it, but it's still not a good contract considering it's a big salary the Senators are thinking of moving and big contracts are hard to move and will be harder to move in this economy.

Edited at 2009-01-28 01:53 am (UTC)
sheesusnat at 2009-01-28 01:37 (UTC) (Link)
I thought the Fisher contract was ridiculous in the first place, even when he was actually putting up points. He's MAYBE a 2.5/3 mil a year player, but 4.2? Ridiiiculous. Finger is just fucking insane, and I think everyone knows that. Again, Spezza's makes sense, to me--he's not a Crosby/Ovechkin, that's why he's not in the $9 mil/year range, $7 mil makes more sense.

The Pens having Fleury signed at $5 mil/year for six years makes me CRINGE. Especially when he only lives up to his potential if there's a capable 1B backup, and even then, he gives up shitty goals in the Finals, and puts the Cup winning goal in his own net! (Also I still resent Malkin getting the same as Crosby, but whatever)

And Lecavalier's contract is just ridiculous for the LENGTH of it.
sxeraven at 2009-01-28 01:49 (UTC) (Link)
I should have put LeCavalier in here, because it really is ridiculous just for the length of it. And considering my main issue with Ovechkin's contract is the length, I definitely should have put LeCavalier's in here.

I can't put Malkin or Crosby here, because really, they're both worth it. And being objective, I can't resent Malkin for getting the same. The Pens signed their big two to reasonable contracts that, depending, could end up being really good deals (considering Ovechkin's $9.5 mil and Briere getting $10 mil for 3 years of his contract)

I'll go with what I said on Spezza. He'll put up the points, and yeah, it probably is worth it, and shouldn't be a BAD contract, maybe a necessary evil. The issue comes in that the Sens are thinking about moving him, and with his contract it will be difficult, and even the Sens have had comments about his play in his own end. And really, the Sens are in no place to complain about anyone's defensive play. *L*

wicebray at 2011-04-10 00:49 (UTC) (Link)
found your site on del.icio.us today and really liked it.. i bookmarked it and will be back to check it out some more later

philysi at 2011-11-01 14:26 (UTC) (Link)
hello, I sent an email to you about this post, its not coming thru for me. Can you connect with me when you get a chance.

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