Blog Entry

Small contracts can be bad contracts, too

Posted on: October 25, 2010 8:39 pm
 

There has been a lot of publicity about teams up against the salary cap and the large contracts that got them there. In Chicago, there was Brian Campbell and Cristobal Huet, with Huet being shipped overseas to dump his contract. Long time veteran Wade Redden is playing in the AHL with Hartford so the Rangers could clear his $6.5 million cap hit. And most recently, the Devils played with only 15 skaters thatnks in large part to the high contracts of Ilya Kovalchuk and Brian Rolston.

However, there have been a few contracts given out this season that were quite puzzling and, despite their relative low value, can be a significant contributor to a team having limited cap space with which to work.

While all the talk about the Devils player shortage earlier this year was about Kovlachuk and Rolston, I for one saw the contract that was given to Johan Hedberg this offseason as a contributing factor. While it is only for $1.5 million per season, had New Jersey signed a backup goaltender for a more appropriate price, they would have been able to afford calling up a player or two to help alleviate their roster shortage. I am not saying that Johan Hedberg is not good enough to earn $1.5 million, rather, the backup to Marty Brodeur, a 70 game per season goaltender, should not be one of the highest paid backups in the league. Of the 61 goaltenders on starting day rosters, Hedberg makes more money than 29 of them. For a position that will most likely play less than 20 games, that is way too much.

Another contract that was significantly too much money for the player acquired was the deal given to Derek Boogaard by the Rangers. Boogaard is nothing more than an enforcer, yet the average value of his contract is $1.825 million per season. This is three times as much money as was given to Raitis Ivanans, another enforcer that fulfills the same role for his club, the Calgary Flames. Most enforcers make between $600 and $800 thousand per season. That extra million dollars per season could be used much more wisely somewhere else on the roster, although the Rangers have never proven themselves as shrewd cap managers.

These are only tow of quite a few deals that, while smaller in value, can contribute to a team’s inability to field the best team possible in this new cap era of hockey.

Follow me on Twitter: @Ed_Welsh

Comments

Since: Feb 22, 2008
Posted on: October 27, 2010 10:39 am
 

Small contracts can be bad contracts, too

A goaltender that will play 15-20 games can be had for $500K. Hedberg is making 3 times that much. Hardly reasonable, which is exactly my point. The $1 million they are overpaying Hedberg could have been used to call up 1 or 2 minor leaguers to help cover the roster.



Since: Jan 11, 2007
Posted on: October 26, 2010 11:28 pm
 

Small contracts can be bad contracts, too

Moose came at a reasonable price.  no, the obsene amout going to Kovi is really what is keeping them from making moves.  play with fire, expect to get burnt.  their near future situation isn't really rosie either with the guys coming up for FA after this season too.



Since: Feb 22, 2008
Posted on: October 26, 2010 7:24 am
 

Small contracts can be bad contracts, too

It isn't solely Kovalchuk. The Rolston contract hurts. My point to Hedberg is that what they are paying him is too much, and it is. The extra money could have been used to call up a minor leaguer to help cover games.



Since: Jan 11, 2007
Posted on: October 25, 2010 10:11 pm
 

Small contracts can be bad contracts, too

the Devils situation has nothing to do with the Moose, solely with Kovi.  they put too many eggs in that basket, and now they will have to pay the price. 


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com