My goal is to provide entertaining and thought-provoking articles and great videos. Thanks for visiting and I hope that you come again!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Predators to Trade Shea Weber?

Restricted free agent Shea Weber has signed an offer sheet with the Flyers, and the deal is huge at 110 million over a fourteen-year time period—according to TSN. Predators GM David Poile has indicated that the offer sheet is complex and that they will review it before making a decision to match the Flyers offer or to let Weber go and receive the compensation according to NHL rules. The compensation depends on the average annual value of the contract, and in Weber’s case it equates to the Flyers first round draft picks over the next five years. That might not sound too bad but when you consider that the Flyers are going to finish high in the standings over the next five years, that reduces the value significantly—yet, any first-rounder could turn out to be an elite player. One thing we do know is that this long-term contract is going to be similar to Crosby’s in that it will pay Weber a ton of money in the first several years (front-loaded) and then take a good-sized drop for another few years, and then pay very little for the last few years—which takes the cap hit down, and Weber won’t even play these low-paying final years because he will have lots of money and won’t want to risk injury. The Preds have seven days to match the Flyers offer if they choose to do so. Poile could match the offer and then trade Weber and we shall re-visit that scenario in a moment.    

Does Weber Truly Want to Go to Philly?

The Tennessean reported today that Weber’s agent has indicated that Shea wants to play in Philadelphia. I believe that to be true because Suter has left and the Predators gambled last year with trades and things do not look as bright as last year. Also, Radulov is probably going to return to the KHL.

What Should Poile and the Predators Do?   

Since Weber does not want to play in Nashville, there is no reason to force him to stay or you end up with an overgrown baby like Rick Nash.

What will be the best option for Poile? Should he match the contract offer and trade Weber, or should he take the five first-round draft picks? Honestly, I believe that he has to match the offer and then trade Weber so that he has a team this year (and future years) that has a chance to make the playoffs and that fans will pay to watch. For Weber, Poile could get two very good players or an elite player and a couple of draft picks. Weber has not been the easiest guy to deal with, and why let him go to the team where he wants to play? I would send him up to Toronto or Winnipeg and let him suffer there (no playoffs for either team for years in my opinion), but a more likely place would be Boston or even the Rangers since they have more talent to offer. We would expect Poile to try to do a deal with an Eastern Conference team if at all possible (increases Nashville’s chance of making the playoffs), but he would go anywhere if the deal is right. Certainly, Poile is not happy about Holmgren’s huge offer to Weber so it would be a little “shot” back if he could trade Weber to an Eastern Conference team.       

I think of the playoff series this year between the Red Wings and the Predators, and Weber putting his hand behind Zetterberg’s head and smashing his face into the glass. For that Weber, I hope you go to Toronto or Winnipeg and suffer!

TJ Stanley