Friday, April 11, 2008

I Don't Like The Terms of Tom Gilbert's New Contract

6 years/24M.

Unbelievable. From being one of the most over-performing contracts on the team, things changed.


I love the player. I think he's a player every team would love to lock up for 6 years.

But would every team sign him at these dollars?

This is another Dustin Penner contract. Pay-for-potential that may not otherwise be there. Tom Gilbert is not a 4M defenceman now. He very well maybe down the road, but he also may not be. He's also 25, so perhaps it's a case of what-you-see-is-what-you-get.

He scored a lot of goals - 13 to be exact. However, he boasted a 13.3 Shooting %, one that is highly unlikely to be sustainable over his career. He had 33 points with 2nd unit PP time. Definitely good, but at this age (25), you wonder how much upside there is.

I thought Lowe had the leverage in this negotiation. Gilbert only had 1 year of pro experience. Finding a comparable would be difficult, given Gilbert gives up 4 UFA years. You have to wonder though - whether taking him to arbitration (protecting against RFA offersheets) and a short term deal would have left the Oilers better off. Lets bypass the fact that the Oilers don't take him to arbitration - even if Gilbert received an RFA offersheet this was in the compensation range of 1st, 2nd, 3rd.

Just how many teams would be willing to throw 4.1M to Gilbert AND give up a 1st, 2nd, 3rd?

Lowe had the leverage, and he didn't utilize it.

Just exactly why he's a mediocre/sub-par GM

Above all, this sets a precedence for Joni Pitkanen, who is also 2 years away from unrestricted free agency. A much more proven player (46 and 43 point seasons), more TOI, tougher minutes, and younger than Gilbert. How much does he get? 4.5M? 5M? Or is there truth to the statement that Pitkanen could be on the way out, as speculated by Robin Brownlee and Bob Stauffer?

There are beginning to be too many contracts in the 4-5M range, and you wonder who is going to be pushed out the door when the pending free agents start needing contract extensions.

Perhaps Lowe is counting on a rising salary cap.

Whatever it is, at this point in time, I don't like the contract. Just when I started having faith in Lowe again.

Time for the player and GM to prove me wrong.


LittleFury said...

I guess if you're a HF head and you think the cap will rise to infinity, then it's okay. Now? Bad, bad deal. And I really like 77.

Only way this looks good short term is if Shouler Souray retires or if some salary is on the way out the door this summer. Even then, what happened to looking for bargains? Not like Gilbert had a whole lot of leverage.

If Pitkanen goes because of this, we're looking at a step back on the defence side. No vet d-man coming in. WYSIWYG.

Lowe you fucking dumb dumb.

PunjabiOil said...

I think Torres will be moved for sure. Staios could also be moved (sell high).

Pitkanen must be re-signed. Hopefully the rumors that his camp is seeking in the 4.5M range are true, and Lowe gets it done.

LittleFury said...

I don't see this team going forward with three D making $4M+. Gilbert, Pits and Souray aren't Niedermayer, Pronger and Schneider.

I don't ant to sound alarmist here, but I've just got a feeling that this is the start of Kevin Lowe Fucking Things Up.

By the way, what will Nilsson get? 10 years, $1 billion?

PunjabiOil said...

Nilsson gets 1M base salary, 2% ownership of Rexall, and the option to marry Katz daughter in 2018.

GSC said...

This signing will undoubtedly inflate the value of Nilsson, Grebeshkov, and Glencross. I'm not even going to mention Pitkanen, he's gonzo.

Lowe's history of overpayment based on the potential should come as a surprise to no one. It's amazing how quickly those forget how ridiculous the Penner signing was...although those folks feel that he's somehow worth that much in the long run.

mike w said...

How do I know this is a bit of an overreaction? You're equating it with the Penner deal.

Gilbert's 7 per cent of the cap. Even if the salary cap stays level, you can maybe even knock 2-3per cent of inflation of each year.

I think that's reasonable for a top 3, puck-moving D-man over 6 years.

For a defenceman, he hasn't even hit his prime yet (although I don't expect 40 points a season).

PunjabiOil said...

I think Lowe could have shaved 0.25-0.5M/year off the contract.

Gilbert will need to improve both offensively and defensively (he wasn't that good in 2008 on the defensive side) to earn his paycheque in my opinion. There are question marks however - will his Shooting % stay in the range? Can he be an effective PP option? Is there really upside, with him being 25?

I don't think the numbers are that terrible - at least not to the extent of the Penner/Souray contracts - but I'm comparing to Penner's contract on the basis of giving a large contract raise to a guy who has only had 1 year of professional experience. It's a pay for potential contract, in which the potential (upside) may not be there.

Of course Lowe is gambling that Gilbert will improve over the coming years. Time will tell.

Of course if Souray is traded, this changes everything. But given the constraints, I'm not sure I would be spending 4M for Gilbert, especially when a better player in Pitkanen needs to be locked up.

It will be interesting if the cap continues to rise. That can change things in a hurry.

mike w said...

Is there really upside, with him being 25?

25 still seems to young to already talk about a defenceman like Gilbert hitting a plateau, considering a D-men's development curve is longer than a typical forward.

My "saw him good" impression of Gilbert was that the dude was overplayed by the end of the year rather than his first half being a "flash in the pan" variety. He's simply made too many brilliant plays.

Lowe could have shave .25 - .5 million of his contract, but he wouldn't get the years. All contracts seem to be gambles now, and at least this one makes some kind of sense.

Man, I wish we could dump Souray. And Penner. And Roloson...

GSC said...

This is part of Lowe and Co.'s continuing mission to prove to the rest of the hockey world that there are talented players who want to play in Edmonton. It's the Ottawa Senator approach to keeping a core of young players together and letting them build over time and continuing to bring in talent from within.

I guess I can see two sides to this deal: If he continues to progress, it's a steal. If he stays stagnant and this is as good as it gets, it's an overpayment. Hopefully it's the former.

LittleFury said...

This is part of Lowe and Co.'s continuing mission to prove to the rest of the hockey world that there are talented players who want to play in Edmonton. It's the Ottawa Senator approach to keeping a core of young players together and letting them build over time and continuing to bring in talent from within.

Name me one Senator player who got that kind of raise after one good season. the Sens seem to be pretty good at both keeping their core together and keeping them on bargain deals. Alfredsson's and Spezza's deals are pretty sweet.

The Oilers now have two defensemen making $4M plus and two more left to sign. They've got Nilsson to deal with and Horcoff coming down the pike. There's going to be some money heading out the door: the big question is whether the return is enough to move the team forward.

mike w said...

...and what about the terms of Nilsson's deal?

Pretty nice I'm sure we'd all agree!

Jonathan said...

//Staios could also be moved (sell high). //

I think we can eliminate that from the list of possibilities (minus a major overpay by someone). The fact Staios wasn't dealt at the deadline, when he would have commanded an excellent return, shows IMO that Lowe wants him to be on our blueline, probably hoping that the younger players pick up some of his character traits along the way.

mike w said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mike w said...

I'd rather trade one of the Oilers' overpaid wingers than Staios.

Who else is going to jump face first into slapshots?

Sean said...

I'm gonna dispute the WYSIWYG statement. I'd bet on Gilbert to improve based on the style of game he plays (relies on anticipation, speed rather than size) and the fact he has played under 100 games. Barring an injury, I think its a reasonable contract. He was playing about 26 effective minutes a night on a team winning 15 of 20 down the stretch when the games counted most. Lock him up till he's 31? Sure.

PunjabiOil said...

You are probably right. Gilbert will likely improve his game.

To what extent? That's an unknown.

mike w said...

I still hate the Penner deal.


Dustan said...

Maybe if you knew what your were talking about, I'd bother to read the drivel you post.

LittleFury said...

Hey Dustan: don't you have hands to shake and dicks to suck at the CoC lunch?

Shove off.

PunjabiOil said...

Haha, that's 420OilersFan or whatever his handle is on HF. Just ignore him - he'll get tired of it soon. :)

Dustan said...

Hey Little Loser - get a fucking life. You're the laughing stock of HF. You're just another jealous fuck who can't stand successful people. I guess that stands to reason you pathetic loser.

LittleFury - well you got the 'little' part right. You're nothing.

Take PJO's cock out of your mouth and grow up bitch.

LittleFury said...

Nothing like being told to "get a life" by a blogstalker.

In fact, I think "blogstalking" is #3 on the list of Seven Habits of Highly Successful People. Or is it #4?

PunjabiOil said...

I momentarily thought about deleting his comment - but then I thought, why shouldn't everyone get the opportunity to laugh at this "World Class" idiot?