Paul Holmgren Slammed It Down on the Negotiating Table, Hard
TSN’s Darren Dreger, who broke news of the Shea Weber offer sheet, says the Flyers put that option (threat?) on the table yesterday as a way of incenting the Predators to trade Weber. But, the Preds wanted a substantial (and completely ridiculous) haul: Brayden Schenn and Sean Couturier.
Homer no like dat.
Dreger told 97.3 ESPN: [must-listen audio here]
“There was unbelievable dialogue yesterday between Paul Holmgren and David Poile trying to get a trade done that would appease both sides. Umpteen deadlines had passed. Holmgren had enough, and in true Philadelphia Flyer philosophy, he said, “Alright, we’re going to do things our way.” And he gave Weber a 14-year, $110 million offer sheet."
“I don’t know if the Predators can handle such an enormous financial monster.”
I giggled at that last line.
Dreger went on to say that he believes the Predators will match it, based on everything they’ve said so far about matching an offer, but wonders if they can really afford so much money up front, especially when there may not be hockey next year.
Homer's offer of $110 million, including $27 million in the next 12 months, is brought to you by Xfinity Live! Philadelphia. You see, in Nashville, they don’t have a cash printing plant 200 yards away from their Zamboni tunnel. Or the backing of Comcast. $110 million is one thing, but with the Flyers offering $56 million over the first four years of the deal, the Predators are between and rock and a ha Homer’s manhood, and now they will have to match the Flyers’ offer if they want to keep their captain.
Weber's view? Daily News beat reporter Frank Seravalli reports that Weber spent time in Philly two weeks ago touring the Skate Zone and meeting with the front office (something we heard as well, but couldn't confirm at the time). Weber’s agent, Kevin Epp, said that his client signing the offer sheet had nothing to do with money. No, really. He did.
Epp told CSN’s Sarah Baicker that his client signed the offer sheet for “security for his family with a long-term contract.” Interestingly, Baicker is reporting that the offer sheet doesn’t include a no-trade clause, which, with Holmgren, is, um… ah, never mind.
Both the Flyers and Predators have plenty of cap room. Weber’s cap hit would be $7.85 million per season ($110 million divided by 14). As pointed about by Seravalli earlier, the Flyers are currently almost $13 million under the temporary $70.2 million cap. If Pronger goes on long-term injured reserve, they will free up another $5 million. The Predators are actually under the salary floor, so they have more than enough room to squeeze that $7.85 million under the cap.
Barry Petchesky, of Deadspin, made a good point in his post about what a great offer this was for the Flyers. Besides the obvious benefits of stretching the contract out until Weber is 40 (which lessens individual season cap hit– remember: total dollars divided by total years), the Flyers, anticipating a new CBA that limits salaries (something that could be retroactive), offered Weber $13 million in signing bonuses over each the first four years of the deal, plus another $16 million, total, in bonuses in years five and six. That means, no matter what happens with the new CBA, Weber will be guaranteed $68 million in signing bonuses. Additionally, even if a new CBA were to limit contract lengths, that change wouldn’t be retroactive. Weber will be a Flyer or Predator for a long time, and he’s guaranteed a substantial portion of that $110 million contract. And that’s why he signed the offer sheet.