Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Dollars and (no) sense

Ladies and gentlemen, the Deuce:

Since everyone is raving about the Rangers' "Free Agent Coup," I thought I'd take a look at their roster and see what their outlook looks like for the next few years:

Salary Cap Hits for NYR (in millions, of course):

Jagr (now 35 years old): 8.36 - expires 09/10
Gomez: 7.35, 7 more years (will be 34 yrs. Old)
Drury: 7.05, 5 more years (will be 35 yrs old)
Straka (now 33 yrs old): 3.3, expires next year
Mara: 3
Cullen: 2.8, expires 10/11
Malik: 2.5
Rozsival: 2.3
Montoya: 0.984
Tyutin: 0.95
Staal: 0.850
Betts: 0.615
Hollwed: 0.513
Orr: 0.538
Callahan: 0 .575
Thomas: 0.668
Girardi: .550

Free Agents Yet to Be Signed
Shanahan (37 yrs old): UFA, made 4 million last year
Avery: RFA - made 1.1 last year
Rachunek: RFA, made 1.8 last year
Hossa: RFA - made 0.6 last year
Prucha: RFA - made 0.55 last year
LUNDQUIST: RFA - Made 0.817 last year; Will make A LOT MORE this year!

TOTAL: 42.9 MILLION - WITHOUT NEW CONTRACTS FOR RFAs Shanahan, Hossa, Prucha, Avery, Rachunek, and LUNDQUIST! The Rangers have just under 10 million dollars per year to sign those 6 players (say goodbye to Rachunek). It would seem to me that they can sign Lundquist, Hossa, and Prucha with that money, but not Shanahan, and they may have to cut ties with Avery. Regardless, this is the Rangers' roster for the foresesable future (with the exception of Cheraponov coming over with a rookie contract in 08/09).

Grumpy Outlook: They'd better win in the next couple of years, because unless the Cap continues to skyrocket, they have very little flexibility to make changes (unless they let Lundquist walk, which I don't see happening). Remember, Hossa and Prucha should command substantial raises. If Marc Staal turns out to be the player they hope he will, they will need to start looking at resigning him come 08/09. The same may be true of Montoya (aka Trade Bait). Regardless, they will still lean heavily on Jagr…a fatal flaw for any team in the NHL. Especially considering his team just spend around 100 million dollars and he's whining about them letting Nylander go. We'll see, but in 5 years, when Drury and Gomez (two smallish centers whose games depend quite a bit on speed) are getting long in the tooth are counting 14 million against the cap, they'd better be producing like superstars. We've all seen what Tampa Bay has done since they had to let everybody but Lecavalier, St. Louis, and Richards walk. The Rangers will also have to let their roll players walk with that kind of money tied up in their "superstars." And as we've seen this offseason, experienced blueliners don't sign contracts worth under a million a year.

Basically, what I'm trying to say is -- The Redskins, er, Rangers, are making the classic Big Market Big Spender mistake in a Hard-Cap System -- throwing max money at two guys, neither of which I would classify as a "superstar," simply because they can, with no though as to the ramifications down the line. Here's to hoping it blows up in their faces.

1 comment:

Gabe said...

I hate the Rangers with a passion. This makes hatin that much easier.