Blog Entry

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

Posted on: August 3, 2011 3:25 pm
Edited on: August 3, 2011 3:31 pm

By Brian Stubits

The ruling in the Shea Weber arbitration case has come down, and you can chalk it up as a win for Weber.

Per Tim Wharnsby of CBC Sports, the Norris Trophy nominee was awarded a $7.5 million deal through the arbitration process, a pretty substantial ruling in his favor. Entering the process, the numbers being floated around for the asking prices were $8.5 million for one season by Weber with the Predators holding an offer of $4.75 million.

With the massive number going to Weber, he takes home the biggest award ever given in arbitration.

It's pretty easy to see why. Weber has established himself as one of the elite defensemen in hockey. After scoring 16 goals with 32 assists last season while racking up more than 25 minutes of ice time per game and Norris nomination, he was due for a nice raise from his $4.5 million salary. How the Predators were going to argue Weber didn't deserve more than they were offering was a tough case to make. It must have been hard for the team to keep a straight face when trying to discredit Weber.

Obviously they came into the negotiations low as a starting point, but can't imagine they wanted to go this high. Whatever they said didn't seem to convince the arbiter much. Now, according to, Weber becomes only the second defenseman in the NHL with a cap hit of more than $7 million, joining just Brian Campbell in that department.

The $7.5 million makes him the highest salary cap hit among defensemen in the NHL and it matches the hits of Steven Stamkos, Dany Heatley and Marian Gaborik for the seventh highest in the league.

But hey, the big award does sneak the Predators over the salary cap floor. So there's some good news for the team.

Not many ever thought the case would make it this far, figuring a last-minute deal would be struck like we saw in every other arbitration case this offseason. Especially when you consider how important locking up Weber is for the long-term outlook of the Predators, it seemed like only a matter of time before a long extension was announced.

Instead, you are left to wonder if this isn't the beginning of the end for the Predators/Weber union. There will be plenty of time to try and come to terms with Weber between now and next year, but arbitration has been known to cause fractures in relationships in the past. Fans in Nashville will be keeping their fingers crossed that isn't going to happen here.

As a result of this, you can probably hear Drew Doughty in Los Angeles jumping for joy. The Kings had been waiting to make their next move in the negotiations with their young defenseman, presumably to see what kind of money Weber would be taking. Not that the two will have concurrent deals, but it helps give the Kings an idea of the market value.

The fun part? The two might have to go through this all over again next season as Weber will have one more go around as a restricted free agent.

Photo: Getty Images

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 16, 2011 3:18 am
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Jan 15, 2008
Posted on: August 7, 2011 9:24 am

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

Actually, this is not true NSBengals and redwings.  Teams can only walk away from arbitration rulings if it's the player that asks to go to arbitration.  If the team asks to go to arbitration, which happened here, the team cannot simply walk away.  They have to buy out the contract if you don't want it.

Since: Dec 1, 2006
Posted on: August 5, 2011 4:49 pm

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

RedWings covered it there Lemonstyx... I think Predators had the choice to offer Weber more money, however knowing worst case scenario would be 8.5 million, they went for arbitration to allow a neutral party to find fair market value.  Hence any offer sheet on Weber would likely have to be higher than 8.5 mil... and then compensation would have been 4   1st rounders.

So I guess in a sense I am under the impression they had a choice, because they did, unless they did offer Weber 8.5 mil or more and he still wanted to walk.. although that would be odd since the ruling was 7.5 mil.  I am pretty sure they expected it to be higher than whatever they bid... and going to arbitration they most likely  wouldn't have been surprised at 8.5 or 7.5 mil.  Anyways, I am pretty sure they had some choice.


Since: Jan 2, 2007
Posted on: August 5, 2011 2:07 pm

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

I honestly believe you and if I came off cocky towards you I apologize, that really wasn't my intention.
Now that we're being so nicey-nicey, let me first thank you for your thoughtful response.  I also want to make clear that I did not take your comments as disrespectful.  There are others that take the anonymity of the web to extremes.  You do not do that.

This is not the first time that you have disagreed with me, and at times you have done so forcefully.  That's being provocative, which to me is one of the highest compliments that can be bestowed.  You cause me to think!

The adage that "we only learn from those with whom we initially disagree with" is axiomatic.  If someone writes something that I like and agree with then I may be pleased, but what did I really gain?  Keep it up until the next time we muck it up.

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: August 5, 2011 11:48 am

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

It seems you are under the impression that the arbitrator awarded Weber $7.5M and that the Predators had a choice of whether to accept it or not.  This is not true.  The team asked for arbitration, which means that they had no choice - they had to accept whatever the arbitrator awarded.  I'm pretty sure they didn't expect the award to be $7.5M.

Lemonstyx.  Every NHL team has the option to reject the arbitration ruling, but if they do that player immediately becomes an UFA and of course that means they get nothing for compensation in return.  Obviously the Predators would never reject the 1 year deal, they would be idiots to do that.  They still have control over Weber for one more season after this one and if they can't negotiate a long term deal will easily be able to trade him for a nice package of players and/or picks. 

Based on the 4.5 million dollar offer they put in for arbitration I think  they were hoping the decision would come in smack in the middle for about 6 million dollars.  A lot of arbitrators do that and have in the past.  I believe the Predators were more then willing to pay Weber 6 million dollars this year but Weber's people asked for a lot more then that..... and in the end they got it.

I can't see Weber being in Nashville for much longer then one more season, if he even makes it that long.  When a guy like Wisniewski are is signing a 6 year deal for 33 million dollars  and a 35 year old over the hill Jovanovski is getting over 16 million for 4 years, Weber is going to demand a a huge long term deal.  Look at Erhoff.  He got 40 million for 10 years but 18 of that in the first 2 seasons.  None of the players I just mentioned when compared to the talent and play of Shea Weber are good enough in my opinion to shine his shoes.....

The NHL is back to the days of crazy contracts and i find it funny because today's hard cap number of 64 million or so is around the same number the Wings used to spend when everybody used to say they "bought" players.

Funny how in such a few short years things change so drastically..... 

Since: Jan 15, 2008
Posted on: August 5, 2011 10:27 am

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

NSBengal, I'm not sure what you mean.  It seems you are under the impression that the arbitrator awarded Weber $7.5M and that the Predators had a choice of whether to accept it or not.  This is not true.  The team asked for arbitration, which means that they had no choice - they had to accept whatever the arbitrator awarded.  I'm pretty sure they didn't expect the award to be $7.5M.

Since: Dec 1, 2006
Posted on: August 5, 2011 9:52 am

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

I meant arbitration, not that the Predators went to compensation.  Accepting any ruling of an arbiter would lean me to think that they were willing to settle with 8.5 mil.

Since: Dec 1, 2006
Posted on: August 5, 2011 6:12 am

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

JUst a note on the RFA compensation... Shea Weber's $7.5 million was accepted, and Nashville Predators were likely to accept $8.5 million since they went to compensation, which means an offer from another team would have to be higher than $8.5 before the Preds refuse to match... therefore any Weber deal would have demanded 4 1st round draft picks.

That would be insane to give up, unless you are going to win the cup soon, or planning on winning the Cup, and have $8.5 million of cap space in your lineup to work with ( and still a legitimate contender).  The RFA rules are pretty much as restricted as you can get without being a Free Agent at all. 

Since: Mar 26, 2011
Posted on: August 5, 2011 1:23 am

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

Guelph: thanks for the props. When you disagree or make an observation, you do it respectfully. It actually took me 20 minutes to put those stats together b/c I knew how I wanted to frame things beforehand. It took me another 20 minutes to write it. I too am on vacation (my work is 6-7 days a week and takes me out of town for months at a time), but I'm on holiday myself. Don't worry though, I'll be in the hole next week some time. BTW, one of my old working buds was from Guelph. He was/is a good Joe. C U down the road, pal.

Since: Oct 16, 2007
Posted on: August 4, 2011 11:53 pm

Predators' Weber awarded $7.5M in arbitration

Hey Steel Wood and Ark razor, I noticed you guys have a good scrap going on here. At approx 3;38 ,Steel wood carved on Ark Razor and then Ark Razor came back at approx. 5: 13 with a VERY impressive set of stats and figures that obviosly took him  One and a half hours to compile..I assume you don't know each other personally so why you would spend that kind of time  trying to impress each other, unless you don't have jobs and so have lots of time to do this. I am a fairly active poster ,but I certainly put THAT much time into them, good for you I guess. Why don't you learn from a REAL PRO like that dude redwings 1969 whoseems in my humble opinion doesn't just back up his thoughts with some googled statistics. Oh, and the only reason I am taking this much time on such a long wided post is because, I'm on holidays, wife and kids are in bed ,and I'm here getting maybe a bit drunk. Cheers

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