Posted on: July 30, 2011 4:12 am

Ark's Spots

A four quick items here.

First, thanks to the couple of people who have favorited me. I appreciate the shoutout.

Second, what the **** is disAstro GM Ed Wade doing? Was he hired to continually supply the Phillies (his ex-employer) with talent? Ironically, he's getting fleeced by the guy the disAstros should have hired, Ruben Amaro. On top of that, the disAstros are eating parts of these contracts- including RFA Hunter Pence (for two more f-n years!). If the idea is to rebuild the club, how about moving Carlos Lee, who's contract is bigger than his "conditional weight performance" clause! Up next: Bourne- who was one of the "prospects" Wade got the first he dealt with Philly! Houston we have a problem. It's called, "We can't hire a good GM since Hunsicker split!"

Third, I see that many Buckeye fans are quite sensitive to the piling on of the program and Tressel. (A friendly shoutout to elloyd1681 BTW). Look, you guys should have your heads high. Tressel did what was asked of him- Beat Michigan (like a drum), win the Big Ten (like a metronome), go to BCS bowls (like clockwork), and hey, even winning a NC. Regardless of what happens to the program (even the Death Penalty- a virtual impossibility), it's a good trade. You didn't have to give back any of the money. You did not get hit with "lack of institutional control". Do you think the fans or the players view the Sugar Bowl win or the Michigan win last year as anything but wins? Your team will not get immediate free agency (unlike USC).

Just don't tell me that they are being appropriately punished. The admin knew what they were getting with the Vest (who is one of the best college coaches in the last 50 yrs), when they hired him. It starts with QB Isaacs at Youngstown St. A violation a DI-AA school (DI-AA!) confessed to and got punished for. It continues when the Buckeyes reported more violations than any other DI-A program since 2001 to the Columbus newspaper (roughly half of the DI-A schools responded). When Gene Smith- who will not even lose his job- says "Tressel is safe" from the outset, that's all I need to know that lack of institutional control is present. Look, you paid your money, you got your results. It's worth it. Be happy. Just don't tell me the program is any cleaner than any of the SEC programs, USC, and the like. 

Fourth, Zach Parise signs a one year 6 per deal with the Devils. This is about the worst case scenario I can see for the franchise. The guy is UFA next season now. NJ isn't going anywhere this year with an aging G and no Lemaire to run the show. They should have traded him. VC was probably in the best position to get him with LA a reasonable 2nd. Is it just me, or has anybody else noticed that Martin Brodeur has done SQUAT since Neids and Stevens left?
Posted on: July 1, 2011 1:39 am

What to Look for in the NHL on July 1....

Forget about the UFA sweepstakes. There's only a few players out there that are potential game changers.

No, the action will be in the RFA market. There are TONS of names out there, and they will get action, particularly if the pay is under $3.2 mil per year.

Here is the RFA offer sheet compensation table for this year (in $mil per year)....

Under 1.1: Nothing to be given
Under 1.6: 3rd round
Under 3.2: 2nd round
Under 4.7: 1st and 3rd
Under 6.3: 1st, 2nd, and 3rd
Under 7.9: 2 x 1st, 2nd, and 3rd
Over 7.9: 4 x 1st

Now, teams have to have THEIR OWN picks available to sign offer sheets. That will take some teams out of the mix immediately.

Another factor will be teams that are under the floor. They will be a major players for these guys. Given that the RFA's are relatively younger, it won't be about winning a Cup for them as much as it will be "securing your financial future" which a 4 year, 8 million contract could do.

I mention 3.2 b/c notice that the compensation is merely a 2nd round pick. I can someone like Wayne Simmonds getting 3 per for 3 (3 x 3). 3 mil would put a lot more pressure on the Flyers cap sitch than 1.7 for example. If clubs start paying near the top of the compensation range for RFA's from better clubs with tight cap space, then those better clubs have tough roster decisions to make.

As I'm a Kings season seat holder, I ask "how much to re-sign Doughty?". Yea, he's an excellent D-Man, but could L.A. do better with a 1st/2nd and 3rd (or even FOUR 1sts) and the 8 mil per saved, particularly if an Eastern Conference team signed him that might not make the post-season? Should L.A. target somebody like Keith Yandle instead and put the pressure on a financially strapped team like the Coyotes? They could get 4 1st for a 1st/2nd/3rd, save 3 mil per and swap out Doughty for Yandle?

I'm sure you can play the same games with the teams that you follow. So many personnell decisions are made with the cap in mind. Remember this as you play GM over the upcoming fun and loving few days!
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