Rejoint: juill. 2021
Mentions "j'aime": 200
My first reaction to this was, “this is insane! He’s 35 years old. Do they really think he’s going to keep playing at that level until he’s 41?” But the more I think about it, the more reasons I’m coming up with why it’s not that crazy. First, let’s look at the player:
• He’s still playing at an elite level, and he’s been one of the most consistent defensemen in the league over the last 12 years when he’s healthy, which he actually has been most of the time over the last 5 seasons.
• If he had gone to free agency, he would have been the best defenseman available. Klingberg is the only one who’s close.
• Based on his recent body of work and recent contracts signed by other defensemen, he should be worth at least $9M AAV for at least the coming season.
Now, from the team’s perspective:
• As others have pointed out, their win window is based on Sidney Crosby’s contract and age, and also on how much longer Malkin (assuming he comes back) and Letang can continue their high standard of play. Cap space during that win window is much more valuable than beyond that, because that’s when they’ll want to have flexibility to add a player or two to put them over the top. If they can shift cap space from the next two or three years to beyond that – like getting a $9M player for a $6M cap hit – that’s a good thing.
• This is similar to a 3-year contract with the cost and cap hit spread out over 6 years – like those deferred payment deals that they used to give before they made them illegal – except that they actually have him locked up for 6 years, so if he turns out to be the next Zdeno Chara, that’s an unexpected bonus for the team.
This makes me think that it may have been the team that wanted the 6-year term, not the player. No matter how you slice it or spread it out, I still think it’s too much – for that term I wouldn’t have gone over $5M AAV – but it’s not total insanity.