(dont you hate it when you write some long diatribe, forget to hit send, then come back to hit post, and realize Zach already said what you were thinking but with only 2% of the words!!)ahh, good old fashioned FCP hockey talk. I like it!It seems like most of your arguments center around the financial angle, and not the hockey angle, or how the financial hit affects the Preds hockeywise in a cap world.Danny, first, can you tell me what you mean by "this contract means they cant do anything for 10yrs"? Whats the anything? I dont see how this stops them from doing anything, other than spending 8mill a year on also rans like Anisimov+Dubinsky.And which player in the NHL is a "perennial MVP"? Who is that?Weber is perenially, to use your word, in the Norris Trophy conversation, in his mid 20's. How much more valuable does it get outside of Crosby/Malkin/Lundqvist?You follow the NHL closely enough to know a first pairing D is just as hard to find out there as a solid #1 gtd, and a top C. The guy averages half a game TOI!I would argue he is easily one of the most valuable pcs in the NHL, possibly top 5/10.But you guys arent really speaking about this in hockey terms, just in financial terms of what Nashville can afford.Here's how I see this financially:1. We dont know anything really about Nashville owners' pockets or next CBA. (ie revenue sharing)2. Losing Weber would further cripple the long term viability of the franchise, IMO.They cant afford NOT to match. This isnt a 1year thing in Nashville, these are people trying to keep a franchise relevant, and profitable, and increase the overall worth. Look at who owns Nashville....I believe, for the most part, local people who need a team to fill that arena, and keep season ticket holders happy.I never understand, and please dont misunderstand this part, why once the cap was implemented, hockey fans all decided we are now smarter then the business minds who own NHL teams. or know anything about running an NHL franchise financially.These are people who have managed to rise to the heights of financial success, and but we can make better business decisions then them and their hired guns? Hockey wise maybe, but financially speaking? I dont think so. I dont get why you guys think Nashville cant afford Weber's signing bonus? Do you know the owners personally, do you have access to their personal tax returns? We all dont know a thing about what they can or cant afford. This isnt Phx or Florida who are literally broke, and ownerless.As far as we know, they have all the money in the world, and just didnt have anything to spend on til now. The Predators, as far as I can recall, have never let a star player walk away without making a financially equivalent offer. They want to pay, players just dont want to stay there. The only top player who left for money was Radulov, and that wasnt a guy ready for max NHL dollars, as has been proven. They traded for Forsberg, they have signed free agents who were willing to come, and have traded for bad contracts (Fisher comes to mind). Also, they stepped up with Rinne, they offered Suter the right money, and they matched Weber. Can you think of a time when they had an asset and had to let it go for money? Timonen? Hartnell? Maybe those were hockey decisions, and they got value in trading those guys once they realized they couldnt sign them. Any goalie they let go of (Dunham comes to mind), it was proven they had better behind it.We all dont know a damn thing about what this team can or cannot afford to pay over the next year. We can make assumptions about how much money they have, how much they value winning, but hockey wise, this isnt holding them back from keeping any other player, or signing some free agent as far as we know. They kept saying they can afford Rinne+Suter+Weber, and maybe they were being honest? They have 2 big contracts, and a bunch of other average players. As far as I can see, Id rather have Weber then 2 of the many stiff D around the NHL who get paid 4million a year.As far as hockey wise being able to afford what they have....this team has no other asset that holds anywhere near the value of Weber. I ask you to find one other player apart from Rinne who they should be worried about being able to afford to pay in the next 3 years. If I look at capgeek.com, plain to me to see they can afford this.I would argue this franchise had to keep Weber, to keep their reasonably strong built up fan base from leaving, and crippling them financially. Not to mention this team needs to let players know they are willing to ice a contender, at all costs. If your gonna have a successful franchise, the words "we cant afford the best D in the NHL at a contract that someone else is willing to pay him" might as well be a death sentence. It says to everyone your never the place to play+win, to both your fans+other players especially.Adam, I dont really agree with you that Edmonton and Philly are the same thing, and Im guessing you dont either. I guess we never know, but I dont think Philly would have finished last 2 years in a row with Weber+the talent they already have. Oh, Id trade Myers+Paajarvi+2 most first rounders away in a second to get Weber.And what would it matter anyway, since if they get the next Hall+Nugent Hopkins, they can only keep them until they turn 26, and then let Philly take them in their prime with an offer sheet? If your gonna start not keeping your talent, youve already chosen your path.In my opinion, this is what you had to do, this is what everyone does. Match, and let it be known you wont let an asset get away.If they are really unhappy with Weber in 12months, Id be shocked if a team like Philly/Toronto wouldnt give up 5 first rounds picks to get him, if not very valuable NHL players. The only thing you've lost is money in signing bonus, but maybe what you gained is the ability to keep a franchise running, and definetly increased the worth of an asset.I dont necessarily think Nashville is thrilled to be matching, I just think they had a no win situation and had to make the best of it.
haven't read the rest of the thread yet, but this is a great post Arp.