FINDING THE NUMBER

Lowetide
July 21 2013 09:52AM

Making a case for Sam Gagner at $5M a year isn't hard to do, but for the Oilers it's more difficult to find a way to include him in their future at that number. Well beyond $5M? Almost impossible.

GAGNER HAS REAL VALUE TO EDMONTON

The case for Gagner making 5 large has been made ably at ON in recent days:

  • Robin Brownlee: "I don't think it's a stretch to believe that Gagner is a reasonable buy at $1 million less a season than Hall and Eberle just signed for. That means $5 million a season.Ka-ching. Pay the man."
  • Jonathan Willis: "My view is that I’d be comfortable signing Gagner at five million per season over five years, but that I’d be calling Grabovski’s agent just in case."

I'd also draw your attention to Tyler Dellow's summary of the situation (here) and his conclusion "deferring this issue by letting the arbitrator deal with it doesn’t seem likely to me to produce a better result. Make a longer term bet on him now seems like a reasonably smart bet to make to me."

BRIDGING THE GAP

The Oilers have five 'impact' players who could reasonably be regarded as having superior futures to Gagner: they are Taylor Hall, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Nail Yakupov, Jordan Eberle and Justin Schultz. Hall and Eberle are signed long term for $6M per year, and that's probably the organizational 'outer marker' for contracts.

Assuming that the club signs Nuge and J Scultz long term for $5M+ (or near) in the next 12 months, and have Gagner come in around $5M as well, the Oilers will be looking at about $27-29M for their five best players when the Yakupov contract comes up for review. This assumes the Nuge is willing to sign for less than $6M, and that my friends is a large assumption.

The cap will go up next year, and if it hits $70M plus then the pressures will be eased; however, signing Sam Gagner long term with a no trade mean Craig MacTavish could box himself in if:

  • he signs Gagner to a multi-year deal with a no trade clause for the free agent years
  • the cap goes up, but does not sky rocket
  • Gagner performs below his established level

These are legit concerns, and things MacT must measure as he readies to sign Sam Gagner.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

I think the Oilers call in forensics on this, pore over the numbers, and deliver a long term contract shy of $5.25M per year. Sam Gagner has been consistent and is entering his prime. Buying an uptick in performance is a good bet.

We wait.

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Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on Team 1260.
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#101 a lg dubl dubl
July 21 2013, 04:00PM
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@Dale

why not Pittsburgh seems to do all right

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#102 David S
July 21 2013, 04:14PM
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They're $hittie wrote:

accuracy? Gagner wins or finishes second every year at the oilers skill competition. Has only lost to Tom Gilbert

Finesse? Highlight ability? Gagners Shoot outs clearly have finesse. 8 point night!

PP Specialist? Lead the oilers in PP/60 by a wide margin

PK specialist? Lead the oilers in corsi rel and pk points last year. Was only on the ice for 3 goals against. Maybe not a specialist but one of the oilers best.

Hocky IQ? You have nothing to measure this but I think the majority of the hockey community disagrees with you.

Passing? Are you on crack, he is the best passer on the oilers. While Nuge's vision may make you believe nuge is better gagner is the more accurate passer.

He is an elite passer, he has elite finesse, and he is good to great at everything else I listed.

Put me in a room for arbitration with you. I will convince them to cut your hands off so you are not able to type something so stupid again.

^ THIS.

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#103 Craig1981
July 21 2013, 04:14PM
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@Quicksilver ballet

I actually hope so. I think he is a standup guy and an great fit for the Oil. I think this is very different than the other 2. He is 23, which is very different than Horcoff at 29. It was always known Horcoff was not a high end scorer (aside from a few fools). And Hemsky was coming of a bunch of injuries and a terrible year. *Arb is only for 1 year so 10 over 2 is not possible

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#104 admiralmark
July 21 2013, 06:22PM
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$5 Million x 3 years with a NTC. Thats my prediction. Hopefully the cap substantially rises in the next 3 years as I believe this is an overpay. And Yah i get as a UFA he might command $5.75+ x whatever years. There's always some GM willing to pay more then what a player should get.

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#105 BaldOldMan
July 22 2013, 08:42AM
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Mark-LW wrote:

You are expressing concern about Gagner's career point average and then you use Eberle's single season outer marker as a benchmark?

Also, Gagner had a pro-rated 65 point season. Using your method of comparing it to Eberle's season of 76 points that is 86% of his production.

86% of Eberle's contract is 5.13 million. And Eberles contract is buying RFA years NOT UFA years. That is a huge huge huge huge item. You can't just ignore it.

So by using your logic, you should actually be arguing FOR paying him MORE than 5 million a year.

...

I did not take into account any prorated seasons therefore I did not include Gagner's or Hall's. I took a full 82 game season because that is actual fact and not just pretend. Looks like Gagner's cap hit is 4.8mill. Read above!! I said it 4.8. Thank you mister 5.13!! I don't think at any point he doesn't make 5 million at some point, I'm talking cap hit..

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