Blues sign four

Discussion in 'HFNHL Talk' started by Dr.Sens(e), Apr 7, 2011.

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  1. Dr.Sens(e)

    Dr.Sens(e) Registered User

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    Unconfirmed reports are circulation the St. Louis Blues have re-signed four key free agents, including three pending unrestricted free agents that have made up the core of the team for over 5 years.

    The report indicates Joe Thornton, Zdeno Chara, Chris Pronger and Jeff Carter have all signed long-term deals that will see the quartet return to the Blues next season.

    While there had been several early season rumours Blues management were considering breaking up their team's core, after the Blues resurgence to the top of the Western conference again this season it seems management has decided to stick with their current leadership group.

    It is expected the four signings will put the Blues perilously close to the salary cap for next year and severely limit their participation in free agency, however.
     
  2. Dempsey

    Dempsey Registered User

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    Huge signings for the Blues, congrats. Never expected to see any of them become UFA's though :)
     
  3. Canuck09

    Canuck09 Registered User

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    Is there such a thing as a high talent UFA in the HFNHL or is that the same as asking if Sasquatch exists?
     
  4. RedWingsLegacy

    RedWingsLegacy Registered User

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    There are some pretty talented UFAs I mean come in Aaron Voros is gunna be a real steal at the very talented UFA group we have coming up :p
     
  5. HFNHL Commish

    HFNHL Commish Registered User

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    It's the nature of the beast. NHL teams buy and sell based on projections of future performance. In the short term, with UFAs, we pay based on historical performance.

    Case in point - I've got a pretty good feeling that Magnus Paajarvi will be outperforming Andrew Brunette by next year. However, the ratings won't reflect that. As such, I at least have to give some thought to retaining Brunette for one more year...based on historical performance.

    Again, nature of the beast. Besides, people generally like to keep assets once they've paid for them. For what it's worth, I'm 80% certain I'll be letting Brunette (and John Madden) walk, and he would be a solid UFA addition for anyone the way a guy like Recchi has been for the NHL Bruins.
     
  6. Canuck09

    Canuck09 Registered User

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    Not that there's often franchise level players available in the NHL there's generally much more quality options than there is for us. To me the biggest reason for this is lack of choice for our players. I know it's virtually impossible for us to do but as long as our UFA's will accept any offer that's presented to them (assuming compensation is appropriate) we'll never have quality UFA's available.

    In the NHL a player can make the decision that he's going to test the open market and that's that. He goes on the market, gets courted by various teams so he feels loved and makes his choice based on any number of factors. He wants to win. He wants to be close to home. He wants to cash in. His favorite escort lives in a particular city. Etc etc.

    Our factors are...contract offered? Check. Is the pay appropriate? Check. Done deal! ;)
     
  7. HFNHL Commish

    HFNHL Commish Registered User

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    You're right - it's impossible for us to have a scenario similar to that of Dan Hamhuis last offseason. Philly trades for his rights - he doesn't want to sign there. Pittsburgh then trades for his rights - doesn't want to sign there, either. He was determined to go to Vancouver, no matter what. That can't - and shouldn't - happen in the HFNHL. Everyone's dollars need to be, more or less, treated equally. Home team usually gets some degree of advantage unless they've been complete jerks during negotiations.
     
  8. HFNHL Canadiens

    HFNHL Canadiens Registered User

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    I think the amount of trades we have in the HFNHL relative to the amount trades that take place in the NHL off-sets the lack of quality free-agents in the off-season. Star players can be acquired in this league, just through trade and not through free-agency. In the NHL, star player can be attained more frequently through free-agency, and not as frequently through trade, especially with all of the NTCs and NMCs that the players in the NHL get.
     
  9. Hossa

    Hossa Registered User

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    This is always my response when the complaints about a weak free agent pool are brought up. There is as much or more player movement in our league as the NHL when you combine the different kind of transactions that exist. We've even had to institute rules at different points to try and curb the excessive movement of players (eg. restricting/fining teams who trade re-signed free agents). We try to mimic the NHL, but we'll always have our own dynamic as well.

    The NHL free agent landscape has changed significantly in the last 10 years because of the CBA, but even in the last couple of years we've seen major changes in the NHL, particularly as teams are sobering up about long-term contracts for RFAs. We can't and shouldn't go overboard trying to replicate the trends in the NHL.

    We have a salary cap and we've seen plenty of examples of cap teams in our league losing key players who then end up in other situations. The Blues have lost lots of talent last over the last couple of years. Last year I had to part ways with Matt Cullen as a UFA, and Tomas Kaberle, Kevin Bieksa and Mike Ribeiro through trades. This summer Martin Brodeur won't be re-signed, and others will be traded. There are plenty of ways to acquire talent in this league other than drafting and developing them, and if anything by removing some of the human element it's even more equitable. The HFNHL Oilers don't have to worry about being the least desirable destination as the NHL Oilers do.
     
  10. MatthewFlames

    MatthewFlames Registered User

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    Just look through the top 50 scorers in the HFNHL this season and note that 10-15 percent of them moved this season in a trade for evidence of this point. No way that happens in the NHL. In fact, has even one of those players moved?

    Well I don't know about that. :naughty:
     
  11. kasper11

    kasper11 Registered User

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    That is partially true...we have always had a weaker free agent pool because of this; any GM that isn't looking to re-sign a player will see if he can trade him. It has also led to GMs being more willing to throw money at a pending UFA rather than lose him for nothing...there will always be somebody willing to pick up the player later.

    BUT...our free agent pool has dried up even more in the past two years since the auto-sign rules. It used to be that, while the market wasn't great, there would be a bunch of top-6 forwards/top-4 d available, and if you were willing to pay, you could find a player. Last year's pool was by far the worst I have seen, with maybe 3-4 players that are anything more than checking line/bottom pairing guys.

    Hopefully the change involving trading for pending UFAs will help this year.
     
  12. Canuck09

    Canuck09 Registered User

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    Please. You mean stars like Dany Heatley don't want to come to the hockey hot bed that is Edmonton??
     
  13. Wildman

    Wildman Registered User

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    Couple of things we can implement:

    1) Increase the $8M max cap to 20% of total HFNHL cap. The $8M cap was implemented when total cap was $40M. This will force high end teams to move some players via free agency or through trades.

    2) The auto sign rule should only apply at the begining of the season. I have noticed that teams are waiting close to the end of the season before using auto sign priviledges.

    3) 10% loyalty factor should be played both ways...agents should be able to ask for 10% more if NHL team had loyalty but HFNHL service was less than 5 years.

    4) Reduce the roster to 30 and prospects to 40 - this will free up lower end players.

    5) Players traded after the Allstar are eligible to elect to test free agency rather than sign with the new team.
     
  14. Lord Stanley

    Lord Stanley Revoluccion Leader

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    I like a couple of these ideas. I think Auto sign should have to be done prior to the mid point of the season. After that the player will go to FA. This should be for UFA eligible players only. RFA's can still be auto signed.

    Players traded after the all-star break should automatically go to FA if they are a pending UFA. The team that traded for them should get a slight advantage in signing them in the off-season however, since they showed that they wanted the player by trading for him.

    I think those two rules alone would increase the amount of players hitting the market in the off season and it would also likely increase the quality of players as well.

    As far as increasing the max cap hit and 10% loyalty rule teams have enough problems generating the revenues to pay the salaries now. There is no need to try and increase those currently. As they already are going up on average due to the NHL cap raising every year. We keep trying to spend more money but it isn't coming it for us to spend.
     
  15. kasper11

    kasper11 Registered User

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    My thoughts:

    1) I agree. We should be using the NHL rules whenever practicable.
    2) I am definitely in favor of this. Personally, I never auto-sign a player before the end of the season. What if they have a horrible year? Since there is no penalty, it is too easy to wait and see. This is an option the NHL teams don't have when signing the contracts. I do think, however, we may want to add a 1-week window if the player signs an extension in the NHL during the season.
    3) I agree.
    4) I disagree with this. 30 just isn't enough to me. If we want to limit the number of waiver eligibles or something, that would be fine, but if you figure a team needs about 25 players to get through the season (2 extra forwards, 2 extra dmen and a goalie) minimum, that doesn't leave enough room for prospects. Plus, I don't think lower end players are the problem.
    5) I agree, although this would probably be subsumed by #2.
     
  16. Wildman

    Wildman Registered User

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    That is my point, if your team is not generating enough revenues than there is no point for you to max on your salary cap numbers. In other words, GM should be looking at both end...revenue and expensejust like in NHL where teams like the ISL,MIN,PHX,CLB,EDM cannot compete with PHI,TOR<DET.
     
  17. MatthewFlames

    MatthewFlames Registered User

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    1 - I'm not in favor of this. I don't think that this will force teams to move players via free agency. It will only encourage more financial mismanagement - 10, 12 million dollar a year contracts (which would only be elite players anyway). I had thought about suggesting longer term contracts now that the sim can handle it - but again - I think this will start an ugly trend of mile long contracts for average players.

    2 - I'm in favor of being quite hard on limiting the auto-sign rule.

    Here is what I suggest: Auto-Sign can only be used in the off-season up to a certain point. I would suggest earlier than than mid-season or the all-star game. Say 25 games (or Christmas in the NHL).

    If you trade for a player after that you have to negotiate with the agents. No auto-sign. This will not only increase the players on free agency but will bring a return to a fun part of the HFNHL experience which has disappeared. I know that this is VERY frustrating for GM's (negotiating with the agents) but it's also a real part of the NHL experience. It's time it returned. And perhaps an influx of new agent blood if those in those seats are tiring of the experience... If not, I believe our system can handle it.

    3 - Agree

    4 - I'm in favor of a small reduction here. Mostly in the prospects side of things. This will increase the number of ncaa, euro and CHL free agents available in the off-season. I would say that we keep our present 80 player limit, but limit the prospects lists to 40 (it's 50 right now). 50 for roster players. So you can skew the list to 40/40 if you have 40 prospects, but other wise you could also have 50/30.

    5 - There is a giant problem here - I would say that if you did this it would be all players or no players. We can't have agents deciding which players decided to use this rule. Only because the accusations of bias and impropriety would go through the roof and nobody wants this. Instead, the changes to the auto-sign rules could cover this.

    I'm against this. It's enough already that teams like the Oilers have such small revenue compared to other teams because they're attendance is always going to be lower. I think a level of parity amongst what GM's can achieve based on their ability rather than which franchise they inherited is important.
     
  18. HFNHL Commish

    HFNHL Commish Registered User

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    As I've said before, I'm fine with cutting off the auto-sign at a certain point. This year, it's June 1st. If we want to make it the trade deadline next year, I'd probably be okay with that.

    But let's not lose sight of why we created the auto-sign in the first place. It was a combination of our finances becoming closely tied to the NHL's in the salary cap era, and, more importantly, contract negotiations with agents becoming way too contentious and exhausting. Unless we have five guys willing to volunteer their services as full-time agents, leaving their GM responsibilities behind, I don't think we want to go back to a "free-for-all" system of negotiations.

    Does the auto-sign have its flaws? Yes. But we all play by the same rules, and those rules are "fair" because they're governed by forces outside our control. I'm against tearing it apart just to try to create volume on the UFA market. Besides, as others have pointed out, we have all kinds of player movement in the HFNHL that you don't see in the NHL. For example, if NHL teams started trading players right after they signed them on the open market the way we do, the NHLPA would probably be up in arms.
     
  19. MatthewFlames

    MatthewFlames Registered User

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    We need an HFNHLPA. ;)
     
  20. HFNHL Commish

    HFNHL Commish Registered User

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    About as much as I need a heart attack. :)
     
  21. Wildman

    Wildman Registered User

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    All I am saying here is that teams need to pay a bit more attention to their finances along with talents. It is one thing to acquire a 1st or 2nd line talent with high salary that can push you to the playoffs but it is other thing to pick players just because it has some values. I know first hand about small market team because I have the lowest arena capacity and one am at the lower end of attendance as well.

    I also think that teams like Edmonton and Islanders can pick up added revenues by signing attendance incentives as it is easier to fill 15,000 seats compared to 20,000
     

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