Here are the ugliest contracts in the NHL today
One of the first things you realize when you make a list like this is that a few of the guys on it are sure to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame someday. But for now, the only place they’re dedicated is the Bad Deeds Hall of Fame.
Erik Karlsson, Drew Doughty, Carey Price, all rightly on this list. I mean, this is bad superstar level business. And the worst part is that they are all going to last a very, very long time. There were only two criteria for a contract to appear on this list. No. 1, that must be bad. No.2, he must stay at least five years after this season. So that means Phil Kessel, Loui Eriksson, Andrew Ladd, Brent Seabrook, PK Subban (let’s catch our breath here), Kyle Okposo, Milan Lucic, Jamie Benn, Jakub Voracek, Nikita Zaitsev, Frans Nielsen and Mikko Koskinen are exempt.
Probably a few things to keep in mind as you read this. First, things can change. We doubt they will, but they can. Second, don’t blame the player. There isn’t a person among us who wouldn’t take advantage of our talents and would gladly accept this kind of money and term if someone was willing to give it to us.
So, without further ado, here is our list. We put them in alphabetical order because, well, they’re all pretty loose:
It’s that simple. If Doughty ends up being selected for the Canadian Olympic team in 2022, it will only be on reputation and reputation. Because there is very little in his game over the past two seasons that suggests he is one of the elite defensemen in the NHL. But he certainly gets paid like that, now and for the long term future. At $ 11 million a season, he has the second-highest NHL success among defensemen.
The only thing preventing this from being a stalemate with teammate Ryan Johansen is that Johansen’s deal only lasts for another four years and is therefore exempt from this list. But the two players essentially signed the same contract for the same reason. And neither of them delivered. In his never-ending quest for a No.1 center, Nashville Predators general manager David Poile pays both center Duchene and No.1 Johansen money without the production. With five years older at $ 8 million a season, Duchene has to be more to the Nashville Predators than a good guy who really enjoys country music.
One of the weird things about this deal is that it came after the 2017-18 season, when Ekman-Larsson was a bit of a disaster defensively. But that didn’t stop the Coyotes from signing him to a contract with a cap of $ 8.25 million for each of the next six seasons after this one, which will take Ekman-Larsson past his 35. years.e birthday. There may still be time to save this one, but after what was a difficult year last season, the Coyotes must fear that their centerpiece of the franchise could turn into a waning asset.
Part of what makes this deal so bad, and what’s hard to separate, is what the San Jose Sharks gave up to get Karlsson. Among other things, the Ottawa Senators got Josh Norris and the draft pick that earned them Tim Stutzle. That and the fact that his cap of $ 11.5 million has hit this season and six more afterwards is the league’s highest among defensemen right now. It’s clear injury and mileage have taken their toll on Karlsson, who is nowhere near being productive offensively as he was and worse defensively. The weird breakout passes are still there and the zone entries are strong, but it’s pretty clear that Karlsson has lost a good deal of the speed that made him effective on both ends of the ice.
CAREY PRIZE / SERGEI BOBROVSKY (TIE)
Like other guys, Price and Bobrovsky are on this list through no fault of their own. In a cap world, especially a flat cap world, you just can’t give a goalie that kind of money and term. Complete stop. Or in this case, not enough point. The difference in their salaries is only $ 500,000 a year, with Price at $ 10.5 million and Bobrovsky at $ 10 million, with the two on contract for five more seasons after this one. Another reason these guys are on the roster is that, almost without exception, a team can never really say what they’re going to get from their goalie from season to season.
The Skinner contract is one of the many reasons we refer to Jason Botterill as “former Sabers general manager” these days. And maybe it’s not fair because he would have been toasted for letting Skinner go after a 40-goal season in 2018-19. But 14 goals last season and zero in 10 games this season? As the kids say, woof. But the good news is that the Sabers are on the hook for just $ 9 million in cap space (which is 11% of their allowance), this season and for the next six after that. And he has a full no-move clause, which means the Sabers have to use one of their spots on him for the expansion draft. Sometimes it’s better to let a guy walk.
When Trouba forced his exit from Winnipeg, the Jets received in return a little-known merchandise by the name of Neal Pionk. Almost three years later, the Jets would be doing this trade every day of the week and twice on Sunday. At $ 8 million for five seasons after 2020-21, Trouba earns almost double what Rangers’ next highest-paid defenseman does, which shouldn’t come as a surprise given that Rangers also employ people like Brendan. Smith, Jack Johnson, Tony DeAngelo (for now) and Adam Fox on an entry-level deal.
A few years ago, a defensive tandem of Erik Karlsson and Marc-Edouard Vlasic would have struck the fear of God in almost any opponent of the San Jose Sharks. But now it’s the Sharks, and whoever signs their players’ paychecks, who are waking up in a cold sweat. Part of the problem for Vlasic, who is on the books for $ 7 million in cap space for five seasons after this one, is that there was a time when he was incredibly underpaid. And now he’s incredibly overpaid. It often works that way in hockey because there are still people who are willing to pay a lot of money and eventually for what a player has done rather than what he is going to do.