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The great E Staal Has Been Traded Thread

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Taking Coastal's comment in another thread...I agree that the discussion regarding Eric's standing with the team this season regarding his possible contract talks deserves its own thread.

 

At this stage, I don't see how we're going to make the playoffs this season, even though I like our off-season additions.  If we're sitting out of range by early Feb, I say trade him to the highest bidder, wish him the best of luck, and then look for a bidder to take Jordan as well.

Edited by remkin

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Taking Coastal's comment in another thread...I agree that the discussion regarding Eric's standing with the team this season regarding his possible contract talks deserves its own thread.

 

At this stage, I don't see how we're going to make the playoffs this season, even though I like our off-season additions.  If we're sitting out of range by early Feb, I say trade him to the highest bidder, wish him the best of luck, and then look for a bidder to take Jordan as well.

 

For me, the way Ronnie is putting the team together and with the picks we should have at the end of this year, I think we will be competitive more quickly then most rebuilds. Because of that, I think it is worth keeping Eric on the team as it is very difficult to get the space eating, possession and scoring center that he is. Of course, this is all dependent on what contract it takes to keep him. If he would sign for a $7M over a 5 or 6 year term, then I think that is fair market value and worth keeping him. However, if he is truly looking for some figure in the $8M per year or more range, I would trade him at the deadline.

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I'll just repeat a post I made in the other thread.  I don't see much possibility of coming to an agreement with E until we know what he is at this point in his career, and I think it will take the first month or 2 of this season to get a good enough feel for that to make a good decision.

 

 

The problem with pinning a number on what E Staal is worth at this point is that we don't know what E Staal IS at this point.  We know what he was before he blew out his knee (pretty damm good).  We know that his play declined significantly the 2 seasons after that, but we also know that part of the 2nd season he was playing with a broken foot.  I suspect part of the difficulty in current negotiations is that, going forward (and now presuambly 100% healthy), E sees himself as returning to close to pre-injury form. The Canes have to factor into account his past 2 sub par seasons and the possibility that they weren't due solely to the injuries but also indicate a general decline.

 

I suspect that we'll  need to see what E IS at this point before there's much chance of a contract agreement.

Edited by LakeLivin

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I think that on one level it is wise for Francis to wait some. If he mostly Francis wants to move on from E., he will need to at least "try" to sign E for the appearance of it. If he really does want to sign E at fair value, and so long as Staal isn't insisting on something the Canes can't live with, say a NTC or a 7 year deal, we will pay him near his market value, then waiting is probably more good than bad.

 

It will allow Eric to show what he can do. An historical slow starter, if he comes out strong, and the team does better than expected, then we will have to pay more, but fine. Pay more. If he comes out slow and the team does poorly, then the price should go down, and the rebuild will be on.

 

That said, there is a point, not sure where it is, where E might be open to a trade, and there could come a point in the process where he won't. The key thing to me is that we get return if we can't keep him.

 

So one downside of waiting too long is that he and the team come out strong, but GMRF stays hard line and won't up his offer in response. This could become a bit uncomfortable, and could get to the point where the team is in contention, but E is not signed. Now you can't trade deadline deal him really, and if you tried? He might well veto the trade. "Why would you trade me if I'm having a good year and the team is in contention?". And indeed some would say, "yeah, why trade him then?"

 

I say because its all about the future. If this team gets a near miss on the playoffs or even a first round exit...but loses E for no return? Not good.

 

The other downside would be that he and the team struggles, but he still wants a big contract, and things deteriorate to the point that he will only accept the perfect trade and Francis can't make the deal.

 

To me there are two good outcomes: 1. E. signs for fair money, term and no or limited NTC. 2. We trade him for a nice return.

 

I would prefer #1, but #2 is ok. But the only way keeping him for this year and losing him works for me is a cup or a deep run. That is not a very good bet this year.

Edited by remkin

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I think that Eric sees the business side of the game as well...which leads me to believe that he and RF have a mutual understanding that they'll wait to see how both he and the team are doing come early Feb.  RF won't trade him to a non-contender...and I doubt he'll ask for the moon on a contract extension if it's warranted.

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Okay, I lay it out in detail below, but here's the Reader's Digest version: I believe Eric is here on October 1, 2016. But ONLY if his performance over the next six months earns his keep. If you care why I think Eric's future is totally tied to his upcoming performance, read on. If not, no worries, we're good :)

 

I fully believe what RF and BP said when they held their first press conference together: Everybody was coming in with a clean slate, and last year would be an eval year. That year is now over. BP has made some decisions about what role he wants each guy to play, and worked with Ronnie to clear out the dead wood and get the guys he wants.

 

When I picture the often-cited PowerPoint presentations BP reportedly gave during his job interview, I have to think he said Year Two will be about figuring out whether the guys we kept and have acquired are willing to play the roles he lays out for them. I try to put myself in RF's and PK's place, in the room with BP as he maps out his plan. He's talking to the two longest-term members of the organization, at least one of whom absolutely reveres every move they've ever made in Detriot and has done his best to model his org on Detroit, because he's from Detroit--and because what Detroit does works. And here's a guy from that org who's totally down with duplicating it here. 

 

The other guy in the room played heart and soul for this franchise forever, and is now running it. While he just missed the raising of its first Cup, he hoisted it elsewhere and knows what it takes to get there.

 

So (in my mind) BP says: 

 

"Year One: We evaluate everybody, players, coaches, scouts, the whole thing. On the ice, there's going to be endless line changes and combinations, but that's what I need to see as coach to figure things out. 

 

"At the TD, we make our best offer to the guys we want to keep--no haggling. If they re-up great, if not we wish them luck and get as many high picks as possible and maybe a quality prospect or two coming back. When year ends, we get rid of the dead wood and anybody who clearly doesn't fit with my system or hasn't bought in. We fill those roles with guys who have proved capable of filling them elsewhere. To get them, we give what picks we can and throw in the guys in the system that we're pretty sure will never see an NHL rink without buying a ticket. We trade with playoff contenders in the other conference with cap issues to bring over quality guys on short deals. Those orgs will be more willing to trade a quality guy to a team in the other conference, and we're trying to build a team that can compete with the west anyway. Plus they are already deep, and will be more worried about re-stocking their farm system, especially if it helps them stay under the cap.

 

"Year Two: We put the guys we've kept and those we've acquired in the roles we've slotted them for and leave them there, to see if they execute. Much less line jockeying this year. Guys get assignments and either fill them or don't, but we give them the whole first half to try to figure it out. We also challenge them to call each other out when guys don't complete their assignments. I can scream at players all I want, but it never means as much as when it comes from a guy's line-mate. 

 

"If we do this, I believe we'll know by Christmas whether we got lucky and everything works exactly as I'd hoped. If so, great, we're in business. If not, we have some tweaking to do - but if we've been smart about who we've signed for how much and how long, we'll have guys in the system or pieces we can trade to get there. 

 

"Building this way also sets us up to address our biggest contract, which expires at the end of Year Two. By following this plan, we'll know whether Eric fits or doesn't. It's hard, but we should feel no obligation to him. We've paid him a boatload of money over the years and we're setting things up so he can succeed, if he plays the role we need him to play. He can do this, we know that. But HE has to go out and do it. If being in the final year of his deal and wanting to end his career here and maybe win another Cup isn't enough motivation, there's nothing any of us can add to that will be enough, either. 

 

"If he responds and fills the role I believe we need him to play, we're good to go. If not, we wind up with a lot of money to seek out the player who can fill that role in Year Three."

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Okay, I lay it out in detail below, but here's the Reader's Digest version: I believe Eric is here on October 1, 2016. But ONLY if his performance over the next six months earns his keep. If you care why I think Eric's future is totally tied to his upcoming performance, read on. If not, no worries, we're good :)

 

Top, I have to hand it to you, and say thanks.

 

As a member who really hates to try and fish out a point in a 3,000 word post, it's nice to see an effort to at least summarize the point so it's easy to find.  Maybe others will take note.  ;)

Edited by coastal_caniac

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"At the TD, we make our best offer to the guys we want to keep--no haggling. If they re-up great, if not we wish them luck and get as many high picks as possible and maybe a quality prospect or two coming back. When year ends, we get rid of the dead wood and anybody who clearly doesn't fit with my system or hasn't bought in. We fill those roles with guys who have proved capable of filling them elsewhere. To get them, we give what picks we can and throw in the guys in the system that we're pretty sure will never see an NHL rink without buying a ticket. We trade with playoff contenders in the other conference with cap issues to bring over quality guys on short deals. Those orgs will be more willing to trade a quality guy to a team in the other conference, and we're trying to build a team that can compete with the west anyway. Plus they are already deep, and will be more worried about re-stocking their farm system, especially if it helps them stay under the cap.

 

I'm going to guess that any coaching candidate that came in and started telling the GM how to GM probably didn't get a second interview. I'm also going to guess that what BP did was actually show how he could take our core players and make a system that they can work in...I suspect very few GMs would extend a second interview to coaches that said "I can't make it work with these guys."

Edited by MinJaBen

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As a long time canes fan. This franchise will take a step backwards if E produces and is bot resigned. All good teams have a formidable 1 - 2 Center punch. Staal has had a great career. I am very optimistic that he will not disappoint this season.

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I think the plan to have basically two months to decide what to do w/ Eric is a good one, so long as we are willing to pay the price if he comes out strong and that price is not crazy. It is so hard to really effectively comment on things when we don't know where the sides each at in the discussions.

 

I will say this. If I'm Eric, I'm in no rush to sign. Outside of injury or a terrible start, I'm thinking "I'm better off basically betting on myself after the worst season I've had odds are good I'll do better. If they want to sign me now, they'll have to pay me like that already happened. Otherwise, I'm fine waiting."

 

If true, Eric is at a pretty high number and Francis really has very little choice but to wait and see if he thinks Eric is worth it. If Eric comes out strong, we'll have to come up closer to his price. But that may be ok if it's not crazy high.

Edited by remkin

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At first glance, the general logic should be re-sign him for the right price if he plays well.  But there are several other factors that should play into this.

 

What if Eric gets off to his normal slow start?  If that's the case, this team likely won't be doing well in the standings.  Even if he can be had on the cheap, do you still re-sign him?  This is a defining year for him.  How can you call him the leader of the team going forward if he doesn't lead by example.  At that point, is he a legit #1 center/player?  Do you strip him of the C and make it more awkward for him in the locker room?  Does he want to leave at that point?  If he gets off to that slow start, do you trade him?  His value would've decreased by then, and he probably won't get the best of returns.

 

What if Eric gets off to a great start, but the team is still at or near the bottom of the standings?  Would that be a sign of a total rebuild?  If so, would you trade Eric, your best asset, for a roster player, a prospect, and a pick to tank for Austin Matthews?  At that point, we could have potentially 2 lottery picks, an additional 1st rounder, and a solid prospect to go along with a solid list of prospects.  Would he accept that?  Like I've mentioned in other threads, Eric's grown to a certain standard of living here in Raleigh, and he has the NTC (which he said at the end of last season he'd waive under certain circumstances).

 

What if Eric gets off to a slow start, but the team is still snooping around the cutoff?  If the season ended, and we finish 9th or 10th in the standings without much help from Eric, where do we go from there?  Would signing him for cheap be enough?  He's suppose to be our leader.  How could the organization keep him as the captain with a straight face?

 

Just a few perspectives I wanted to throw out.  However, I think as he goes, the team goes.  It would behoove him to get off to a great start to secure his future with this organization.  The clock has been milked long enough.

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Top, I have to hand it to you, and say thanks.

 

As a member who really hates to try and fish out a point in a 3,000 word post, it's nice to see an effort to at least summarize the point so it's easy to find.  Maybe others will take note.  ;)

I did it with you (okay, and maybe super_dave!) in mind :)

 

And for the record, after that lede paragraph, it's "only" 791 words  :P

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I'm going to guess that any coaching candidate that came in and started telling the GM how to GM probably didn't get a second interview. I'm also going to guess that what BP did was actually show how he could take our core players and make a system that they can work in...I suspect very few GMs would extend a second interview to coaches that said "I can't make it work with these guys."

Please show me exactly where I ever suggested BP came in and said "I can't make it work with these guys."

 

Other than that, you may be right that BP came in docile. Because that's clearly his nature  :rolleyes: 

 

Then again, when you look at the players Ronnie has brought in since BP was signed and their connections to BP (Malone, Nestrasil, and now Ryan--and Malone was signed two weeks after BP was hired), and look at the new veterans' connections to the Western Conference (Wisnewski, Versteeg, Lack) - a conference BP knew very well, since he coached in Spokane and in Detroit, which only recently returned to the East - you may be wrong.

 

Based on close observation of deals made and the way we're patterning ourselves after Detriot, it's pretty obvious that the GM/Coach relationship in this organization is whole lot more collaborative than it's been for a very long time. And why not? What GM wouldn't first go to his coach and at least ask, "Hey, I'm looking at this guy, what do you know about him?"

 

I'll tell you who if necessary, but here's a hint: He's the GM in Pittsburgh now.

Edited by top-shelf-1

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I want the trade and the resign. Ideally, I'd like us to rent out Eric at the deadline similar to Arizona with Vermette. Resign him in the summer and make a nice deal. Eric gets a reminder what playoffs are like and RF gets 3 first rounders come June.

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I want the trade and the resign. Ideally, I'd like us to rent out Eric at the deadline similar to Arizona with Vermette. Resign him in the summer and make a nice deal. Eric gets a reminder what playoffs are like and RF gets 3 first rounders come June.

 

That'll be 4 when we trade Cam too ;)

 

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Since most teams are close to the cap, I don't see many teams lining up to sign high price FAs  with a recent track record like Eric's. I think too many focus on Eric as the future of this team. 

Edited by winger52

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So you think it's a good idea to let E hit UFA and then try and resign him while competing with offers from other teams who win more often and have more money than us?

Well, the teams that have $8million+ in cap space at the moment are us, Nashville, the Peg, the Devils, the Panthers(Florida, not Carolina), and the Slugs.  The only Cup competitive teams in that group mare the Jets and Preds, and thy both have 3+RFAs to sign next year.  In any case,  if E.  doesn't crack the 60+ point level, I don't see a market for a $8mil, 50 point ,32 year old player. :deadhorse:

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Well, the teams that have $8million+ in cap space at the moment are us, Nashville, the Peg, the Devils, the Panthers(Florida, not Carolina), and the Slugs.  The only Cup competitive teams in that group mare the Jets and Preds, and thy both have 3+RFAs to sign next year.  In any case,  if E.  doesn't crack the 60+ point level, I don't see a market for a $8mil, 50 point ,32 year old player. :deadhorse:

 

It is a valid point. His remaining contract will be more palatable at the deadline, but early in the year, and before proving himself, there are probably not many if any reasonable trade offers on the table or near the table. It could change if teams panic with what they have in camp, but there is little doubt he will be marketable a couple of months assuming a bounceback year. Of course, can we really trade him if the team is doing well? I guess, but we'd have to get something good offensively back in that case, not just draft picks.

 

On the other hand, a trade now or soon, could involve signficant cap money coming back to us and off the other team's roster in the form of another high paid veteran, especially one with only a little time left on their contract. The rumored Toronto deal way back when was E for Kessel, Kadri and a first rounder. Doubt we'd get offered that deal now, but clearly, more salary was actually coming our way in that deal than going the other way. I understand Kessel has way more time left on his deal, but that might be why we got so much, at least on paper, coming back.

 

Anyway, if a team currently near the cap, moves cap hit our way in such a deal, it could still happen.

Edited by remkin

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I am a 10+ year ticket holder so let me say this is said only with thought.

 

I am amazed that people are letting how they "feel" about E. Staal as a person cloud their judgement.

 

Eric Staal is a "+" 3 times in his entire NHL carreer and "-" 8 times.  Let that sink in a moment, and keep in mind he was put out on home ice vs the other teams 2nd offensive line with Maurice, Kirk and often Lav. 

 

Under no circumstance is he worth 8 million to any team including ours.  His pay scale places him as one of the highest paid in the entire league and he has enjoyed that for years.  Currently I doubt he would even make the Canadian Olympic squad.  If he did he may make 4th line.  He has put up some good stats, but he probably would not make the first line with any top 15 team in the NHL.  He is good yes.  Hall of Fame no - despite the fact that is where he was and is paid.  He loafs up the ice defensively often, takes poor penalties, and is best as a junk goal scorer parked in front of a net he no longer will park in front of.  No one on his line (save one year with Semin) has he made better as a center distributing the puck. 

 

I appreciate his work for which he was over paid dearly, but hes hardly the best player even on our team and has not been often. He needs to leave even if we get nothing in return.  5+ million (which I assume he will think he is worth) is better spent on any other or two other players which will play both sides of the ice, can pass, and make their linemates better which he has almost never done.

 

Remember he scored 100 points one time.  That was as our teams 2nd line center when teams did not focus on him and we had about 6 - 20 goal scorers.  He has otherwise proven he was a good 70 or so point player for about 5 years which places him about 20-25th in the league, more recently he has posted averages in the upper 50's with lots of his goals coming when the game was over and in a losing effort. 

 

With average defense, finally 50/50 on face offs, less than average puck distrubition he just finished 73rd in points last year, and 60th in goals.  40th in points the prior year, and 81st in goals the prior year which he and Jussi Jokenin had almost the exact same goals and points only Jussi was plus 12, had a better FO% and did it with 50 less shots.

 

This sounds harsh to some I know, but its a reality check.  We need to wish him well be happy for him and move someone else in.

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I am a 10+ year ticket holder so let me say this is said only with thought.

 

I am amazed that people are letting how they "feel" about E. Staal as a person cloud their judgement.

 

Eric Staal is a "+" 3 times in his entire NHL carreer and "-" 8 times.  Let that sink in a moment, and keep in mind he was put out on home ice vs the other teams 2nd offensive line with Maurice, Kirk and often Lav. 

 

Under no circumstance is he worth 8 million to any team including ours.  His pay scale places him as one of the highest paid in the entire league and he has enjoyed that for years.  Currently I doubt he would even make the Canadian Olympic squad.  If he did he may make 4th line.  He has put up some good stats, but he probably would not make the first line with any top 15 team in the NHL.  He is good yes.  Hall of Fame no - despite the fact that is where he was and is paid.  He loafs up the ice defensively often, takes poor penalties, and is best as a junk goal scorer parked in front of a net he no longer will park in front of.  No one on his line (save one year with Semin) has he made better as a center distributing the puck. 

 

I appreciate his work for which he was over paid dearly, but hes hardly the best player even on our team and has not been often. He needs to leave even if we get nothing in return.  5+ million (which I assume he will think he is worth) is better spent on any other or two other players which will play both sides of the ice, can pass, and make their linemates better which he has almost never done.

 

Remember he scored 100 points one time.  That was as our teams 2nd line center when teams did not focus on him and we had about 6 - 20 goal scorers.  He has otherwise proven he was a good 70 or so point player for about 5 years which places him about 20-25th in the league, more recently he has posted averages in the upper 50's with lots of his goals coming when the game was over and in a losing effort. 

 

With average defense, finally 50/50 on face offs, less than average puck distrubition he just finished 73rd in points last year, and 60th in goals.  40th in points the prior year, and 81st in goals the prior year which he and Jussi Jokenin had almost the exact same goals and points only Jussi was plus 12, had a better FO% and did it with 50 less shots.

 

This sounds harsh to some I know, but its a reality check.  We need to wish him well be happy for him and move someone else in.

Thank you so much for spelling out what a few of us have been saying for years.

 

Shorter: JR ponied up too soon, with too small a sample size, and we fans have been paying the price ever since.

 

IMO: If Eric Staal doesn't "start on time" this year, AND if the Hurricanes are not in a playoff spot by Thanksgiving, RF will begin shopping him. (In other words, he can start slowly and if his teammates "pick him up" early, he'll be safe until Christmas.) If we've climbed into (or are still in) a spot by Christmas, he will stick until the TD. If we're in a playoff spot then, he'll be here thru the end of the season. If we make the playoffs, he'll be offered an extension at something closer to what he's now asking than what the team is offering, after our season ends - but ONLY if that number works for the org. If we can't get together on a number, we'll thank him for his service, wish him luck and say goodbye. And I think that's true even if we were to get to the Final - indeed, even if we were to win.

 

I've said it elsewhere on these boards: RF believes that another player who can give you what you need can always be found. I believe that, organizationally, we're moving away from a "superstar" culture and toward one focused on role players--the very model that has worked so well for so long in Detroit.

 

I know some people don't want to hear it, but Eric is an old man by hockey standards, and an injury-prone one at that. If he'd gotten out of the gate quickly every year, played at a high level in spite of his injuries (as so many truly elite players do), and if the Canes had competed for a playoff spot every season, he'd still have real value. If the Canes had MADE the playoffs more often than not, he could maybe get in the $7-8 million range after this season - for three years, max. If they'd made the playoffs EVERY season, he'd probably find someone to give him a five-year deal at those numbers (the hockey equivalent of a "golden parachute").

 

But the reality is that Eric has been injured enough, and he has allowed those injuries to affect his play enough, that any clear-eyed GM is going to look at that, at his age, and at his numbers, and do exactly what RF is doing. He's going to say, "Prove to me you're worth what you're asking for." If Eric doesn't do that this season, the only tool RF has left in trying to unload him is telling potential trading partners, "He needs a change of scene." Before the TD in a player's final contract year, you might get something back for that. After? Rotsa ruck.

 

The obliviousness of Eric's go-to-the-wall-for-him fans to these facts is breathtaking. I'm just thankful that RF sees things more objectively. 

 

But let's say Eric fills the role BP asks him to this season, as I think we all hope he does. If so, I believe the most RF can offer is $6.5 for four more years. If he doesn't meet expectations, however, I think ANY extension becomes very tough--because at some point I think a GM has to decide that a clean start for his org is not really possible without bidding farewell to the guy who has been its face throughout so many losing seasons.

Edited by top-shelf-1

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I did it with you (okay, and maybe super_dave!) in mind :)

We do thank you.

What I'm hoping happens is that EStaal comes out strong and earns an extension of say 4 years at $7m. A strong ES is going to help the Canes more (in the near future) than the pieces that he will bring back in a trade. I'm tired of the losing.

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"I've said it elsewhere on these boards: RF believes that another player who can give you what you need can always be found. I believe that, organizationally, we're moving away from a "superstar" culture and toward one focused on role players--the very model that has worked so well for so long in Detroit."  ......Exactly, time to move away from NTC / over-ego-superstar contracts.. just my opinion but E doesnt come close to 7 mil nor should he receive anything beyond a one-year deal.. 


 


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Shorter: JR ponied up too soon, with too small a sample size, and we fans have been paying the price ever since.

 

IMO: If Eric Staal doesn't "start on time" this year, AND if the Hurricanes are not in a playoff spot by Thanksgiving, RF will begin shopping him. (In other words, he can start slowly and if his teammates "pick him up" early, he'll be safe until Christmas.) If we've climbed into (or are still in) a spot by Christmas, he will stick until the TD. If we're in a playoff spot then, he'll be here thru the end of the season. If we make the playoffs, he'll be offered an extension at something closer to what he's now asking than what the team is offering, after our season ends - but ONLY if that number works for the org. If we can't get together on a number, we'll thank him for his service, wish him luck and say goodbye. And I think that's true even if we were to get to the Final - indeed, even if we were to win.

 

I've said it elsewhere on these boards: RF believes that another player who can give you what you need can always be found. I believe that, organizationally, we're moving away from a "superstar" culture and toward one focused on role players--the very model that has worked so well for so long in Detroit.

 

I know some people don't want to hear it, but Eric is an old man by hockey standards, and an injury-prone one at that. If he'd gotten out of the gate quickly every year, played at a high level in spite of his injuries (as so many truly elite players do), and if the Canes had competed for a playoff spot every season, he'd still have real value. If the Canes had MADE the playoffs more often than not, he could maybe get in the $7-8 million range after this season - for three years, max. If they'd made the playoffs EVERY season, he'd probably find someone to give him a five-year deal at those numbers (the hockey equivalent of a "golden parachute").

 

But the reality is that Eric has been injured enough, and he has allowed those injuries to affect his play enough, that any clear-eyed GM is going to look at that, at his age, and at his numbers, and do exactly what RF is doing. He's going to say, "Prove to me you're worth what you're asking for." If Eric doesn't do that this season, the only tool RF has left in trying to unload him is telling potential trading partners, "He needs a change of scene." Before the TD in a player's final contract year, you might get something back for that. After? Rotsa ruck.

 

The obliviousness of Eric's go-to-the-wall-for-him fans to these facts is breathtaking. I'm just thankful that RF sees things more objectively. 

 

But let's say Eric fills the role BP asks him to this season, as I think we all hope he does. If so, I believe the most RF can offer is $6.5 for four more years. If he doesn't meet expectations, however, I think ANY extension becomes very tough--because at some point I think a GM has to decide that a clean start for his org is not really possible without bidding farewell to the guy who has been its face throughout so many losing seasons.

 

First, I agree with a lot of what is in this post. JR definetly overreacted to the cup and E's 100 point season, and in trying to lock down what appeared to be the superstar of the future, went overboard, with little care for the distant future, and threw in a NTC to boot.

 

I think is it always difficult to respond when there is a call out nugget burried in a post, to wit:

 

The obliviousness of Eric's go-to-the-wall-for-him fans to these facts is breathtaking. I'm just thankful that RF sees things more objectively.

 

A bit strong. Leaves people thinking :"did he just call me breathtakingly oblivious?" Anyway, I like the rest of the post, though not fully onboard with all of it, I am with most of it and the general points of it.

 

This idea that we are moving away from the "superstar" culture is true and a good one. And focusing more on role players. Yes, but...there is always another side of the coin. When swinging the culture away from the star culture, one must take care not to swing it too far the other way. Teams full of nothing but role players do nothing. Every cup-winning team is stacked with talent, including those Detroit teams. Take Datsuk and Lidstrom and Zetterberg etc. off those teams and you don't get cups. I've heard a quote that a team needs a minimum of 4 legit All Star level players to even think about the cup.

 

Further, the conventional wisdom says that two of those elite players must be your #1 defenseman, and your #1 center. The very reason that Arizona took Dylan Strome ahead of Hanifin is their belief that you can't win without a true #1 center and they've been struggling for years trying to find one.

 

I can already hear it: E. Staal is really a winger. OK, fine, but he has had some very good years at center along the way. And he's the closest thing we've got. My main point to those who disparage Staal is the old "be careful what you wish for" line. We went strong on the D in the last two drafts and that should serve us very well in the long run, but we also did not pick up a #1 center prospect or an elite scorer. So, if this team bids farewell to E. we will have a glaring hole at 1C, which is not a good place for a hole. And be a scoring challenged team that just lost it's top scorer. Future 1C: Rask? Maybe, but a stretch at this point. Jordan? No. Nash? Ryan? Lindholm? maybe...

 

Even in a trade, the trading team, in need of a first center is not going to send one back to us. Draft? Well maybe, but the elite centers tend to go at the very top.

 

The idea that Francis thinks he can find guys to fill any role is far easier with the true role player positions. I will give him major kudos if Lack ends up as a #1 goalie. That could be a steal of Sekaraian proportions. But first line elite centers don't go for late draft picks or back up goalies. That is a role that some teams (see Arizona) go years without finding.

 

After all of that, I do agree with many of your contentions though. While I am nervous about waiting too long to fish or cut bait on E, there are two sides to a negotation and my suspicion is that E is in no hurry and is sitting on a big number at the moment. Francis has little choice but to see what he will do in the first couple of months since he absolutley can't sign a big number on Staal now. So if true, there probalby isn't much choice but to go into the year as is and see how it goes.

 

Ultimately the team is better off w/ E under a reasonable contract than not because we do not have a first line center. (That's not go-the-wall for Eric is it)? Take E. off the team and pretend he is on another team being shopped. We would be amoung the teams that should be interested in trading for him. If only we had full on Buffaloed last year, we'd have Jack Eichel and E could be shopped immediately. But no one was going to out Buffalo Buffalo, so that's just dreaming. Still I can dream.

 

I do agree that E needs to be on a more reasonble contract though. I main hope that if he won't come to that, he will allow a trade, because getting zilch for him would be tough. Best option: Sign E for a reasonable deal. Second best option: get some return including a forward and a #1 pick at minium. Worst option: wait too long, try to strong arm Staal, anger him to the point he blocks all trades at the deadline and we get zip. I really don't think that last one will happen, but it is a possibility. It has happened.

Edited by remkin

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Remkin, your normally a reasonable poster.  Not saying your not here but I would say your seeing it a bit "rosey."  I wont go so far as to say you've moved back to an island but I will say this:

 

Someone still must pick up an overpaid player for us to get 'return' AND the player must approve the trade due to the NTC.  That's a lot that has to occur given a midyear move is still almost $4 mill for another team to pickup and he must approve it.  In fact I would say to lose him for nothing is a return unto itself because at least we pickup the money. 

 

I would say given the stats, if you lose all of his salary, can you pick up a player for 70th in points / 60th in goals for $8mill?  Of course.  The question you need to ask yourself reasonably is could you spend $4 mill on two players each and get more than 70th in points and 60th in goals combined better defense etc...?  If Staal were to re-sign for about $4 mill for 3 years I could tolerate it.  More than that another team needs to pay.  We are not deep enough for an Erik Cole salary of high pay, flash and little team help as the Oilers and Stars Habs ... discovered.  I think BP is smart.  He's looking for CoryStillman Justin Williams Aaron Ward type of players which aren't easy to find but hard to get when you have a few people eating all your salary.

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