It's never to early to think about the future. The future being, July 2007.
Sykora's contract ends. So does Smyth's. Ditto for Tjarnqvist and Staios
Fact: We're not going to be able to sign all these guys.
Unload one of the larger salaries if possible (Pisani, Moreau), and re-sign Sykora for a slight raise 3.3-3.5M for a 3-4 year deal.
I like Pisani and all, but I cannot emphasize enough what a stupid contract that was. He's simply not a 2.5M player. Worse thing, is it's a 4 years in length.
People will argue that we would not have made the cup if not for Pisani, so re-signing him at 1.1M in January would have been a mistake, as he would lost the motivation.
My response: If a guy can only get motivated by money, then you don't keep him on the team, or you try to find other ways to motivate him....and what exactly is Pisani's motivation right now?
If that were the case,shouldn't the Oilers be signing everyone to 1 year deals?
I stand by my opinion that it was a brutal contract that will hurt chances to sign other guys, unless traded.
Hey, one bad contract isn't the end of the world. Multiple bad contracts collectively hurts a team financially.
Moreau's contract was pretty bad as well, although not to the same extent as you know he's a tough as nails type of guy who will take any pain to help the team win hockey games.
Hopefully Lowe doesn't get strike 3 with Staios. Rumours are going on a 3 or 4 year deal is in the works.
Nothing more than 2 years IMO is appropriate at 2.5M. There won't be teams lining up to sign him at 3.0M so it makes little sense for paying him a premium at this point.
Why should the Oilers give in for Staios's wants?
Lowe should do what is in the best interests of the organization.
Or let him test UFA. Just because he gets there,doesn't mean he will get the 2.5-3.0M.
Guys like Samsanov, Dvorak, Peca didn't get as much as they anticipated (and short term deals as well).
There is a cap in the new NHL. Teams just won't be able to throw money (see JP Dumont). It's a zero sum game. If someone wants to take on a bad contract on Staios, let them.
I'd really want Lowe to show some guts this time around. He has yet to go to arbitration with a player, and not let a player he wanted back (other than Spacek) to test UFA markets...the premium paid for signing a player prior to July 1 can be excessive.
Lowe missed the boat with poor contracts in the past (Cross, Conklin, Cleary, etc.) Let's hope it's not the same old song this time around.
You have to have a good balance. You should not always give in to the players wants, especially if these said guys can be replaced for much less. Guys like Dean McCammond, Radek Dvorak, etc are all solid bottom 6 players that can be signed for dirt cheap on the UFA market.
Guys like Sykora, Smyth, cannot.
Potential UFA's will go. In our case, we'd lose our leading point scorer on the team because of the poor contracts given to guys like Pisani, Moreau, and possibly Staios.
Or worse, we'll lose the heart of the team in Ryan Smyth.
Then again, who am I to complain about giving 32 year old's 3 or 4 year deals, with decent prospects (Gilbert, Chorney, Peckham, etc) coming up.
Mind you, Lowe should be given some well deserved credit.
The Pronger deal was robbery. Spacek deal was decent.
Peca deal was a gamble, but paid off in the playoffs.
Roloson trade was solid.
The rental deals were probably only to make the playoffs, as this team was just fighting to make the playoffs. Missing the playoffs last year would hurt the team's bottom line in the future (missing playoffs for 2 years in a row). The Cup was not expected, but Lowe did his job in making the playoffs.
I'm just not willing to call him a genius that some people seem to think he is. The objective view is that this team barely made the playoffs last year, until the 81st game. Missed them 2 out of the 3 previous years. Lowe has made a couple of poor moves IMO that will hurt us next summer. So is it wrong to show concern if he's about to make another likely poor move giving Staios the rumoured 3-4 year deal? at over 2.5M?