Rangers Scouting Souray

Despite another loss, there is some good news for Oilers fans. And no, I’m not referring to the fact that the team is one step closer to a high draft pick.

According to Sportsnet’s Mark Spector, the New York Rangers are scouting Sheldon Souray, and Glen Sather has been to Hershey to watch him play.

The Edmonton Journal’s Jim Matheson asked Steve Tambellini about the Souray situation, and Tambellini seemed perfectly willing to place the defenceman on re-entry waivers, if a team ever expressed interest:

“I would like to get an asset for Sheldon. If that’s not a player or draft pick, then the asset is the money we would be saving — half of what he’s owed.”

If Tambellini is willing to place Souray on re-entry waivers, one has to think he would be claimed. It’s become fashionable to deride the defenceman since his outburst against the Oilers last year, but the fact is that when he’s healthy he’s a pretty good player: big, tough, with a heavy slap-shot and an effective game in his own end.

On re-entry waivers, Souray would only represent a cap hit of $2.7 million. That’s Steve Staios money, and pretty darn cheap for a top-four defenceman. I’m betting Souray is placed on re-entry waivers, and that somebody claims him, finally ending this bizarre saga.

I have my doubts it will be the Rangers, though. For teams like Carolina and Atlanta, fighting for the last few spots in the Eastern Conference playoffs, doesn’t it make sense to deny the Rangers that player? If I’m Rick Dudley or Jim Rutherford, I’d argue it does.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    The Islanders grabbing Nabakov for the sake of having another asset to move in the off season is a good example of what would happen. Someone else will get a draft pick for Souray instead of the Oilers. Edmonton will pay 75% of Sheldons salary (this year and half of next, or worse if they buy him out this summer) If they choose this re-entry option another team will get the draft pick for him if they choose to move him again. What would a motivated Sheldon Souray fetch with a 2.75 million dollar contract for just one year, a second or third rounder maybe? This is Edmontons loss because of the way this has been handled.

  • If we bought him out this summer I think it would be 2/3 of his salary over 2 seasons against our cap. Not that that is a big deal, but if Tambellini is willing to eat half his salary for next year he would be saving money. If he was put on re entries, one would have to assume there is absolutely no market for Souray. Not now, definately not in the summer.

    NY is 10th in the league, there are probably a couple other teams that would risk taking him depending on their cap situation. San Jose would probably consider it too.

  • bigrroberto

    JW or anyone

    Do you know, if say the Islanders pick up Souray on re- entry waivers, are they allowed to trade him this season to say the Rangers, or do they have to send him through re-entry waivers again first??

    thanks

    • bigrroberto

      If you pick a player up on waivers, you can’t trade him without first making him available (via waivers) to every other team who made a claim on him.

      For instance, if the Islanders put in a claim, but so did the Red Wings, Rangers, Sharks, Stars & Canadiens, you’d need to offer him via waivers to all of those teams first, then you could trade him.

  • From the CBA, Paragraph 13.20 (b):

    A Player who has been acquired by Waiver claim shall not be Traded to another Club until the termination of Playoffs of the season in which he was acquired unless he is first offered on the same terms to the Club(s) that entered a claim when Waivers were requested originally and the offer has been refused.

    Or in other words, what those other guys said.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Just wonderin, if you bring a player back through re-entry waivers, and he doesn’t get claimed for one reason or another, what do you do with him? Can you simply send him right back down again?

    I think unless you get a return on Souray, leave him where he’s at. The Oilers are already paying him his full salary to keep him where he is. Why would they want to continue paying half of that to give him what he wants? He gets what he wants, we get nothing, and we still have to pay half his salary. Is it worth the cap savings?

    To hell with Souray and any other spoiled multi-millionaire who cries about his treatment while playing a game for a living.
    Life is good, yet I’m still shy a few hundred for next months mortgage payment.

    • book¡e

      I don’t think this is about ‘what he wants or not’. I for one never thought this was as much about punishment or personality as it was about an untenable situation for the Oilers. You simply cannot bring a player who said what Souray said (twice) back to the team – added to that is the ‘dressing room impact’ issue that we heard about. He ended up in Hershey because nobody wanted to pay him what the Oilers were paying him. The Oilers would have been happy to give him to another team and probably even take a few million $$ back in bad salary.

      Why bring him through Re-entry and ‘give him what he wants’. Well, for one, it ends the saga once and for all (assuming he doesn’t bash Edmonton in the press every second week). Two – Daryl Katz is rich, but he knows the value of $2.7 million and would probably prefer to keep it as opposed to give it away. The salary cap hit is probably not a problem, so its not a concern there.

  • stevezie

    I’m not dumb but I can’t understand why, if the oilers are willing to lose Souray on re-entry waivers, they wouldn’t have done so at the beginning of the year and saved themselves some money. Why not keep him until the summer? Unless it’s as a favour to Sheldon/to improve the team’s image throughout the NHLPA, and I have my doubts.

    • I imagine that with pro-rated contracts the other teams in the league would have needed more Cap Space at the beginning of the year to accomodate Souray, even at half price.

      Now they dont need 2.7 million, they need significantly less.

      I’m also not sure, but they were saying on the Gregor show that if he was traded but kept in the minors he wouldnt have to clear waivers. That makes me think that he could stay in the AHL until Playoff time when he could be brought up without clearing waivers.

      Those are just my initial thoughts on this whole thing.

  • @ stevezie:

    Based on Tambellini’s comments, my guess is that the Oilers felt Souray probably wouldn’t be claimed on re-entry waivers.

    As for why they should put him on re-entry waivers now (assuming they get interest), they probably won’t get anything other than ugly salary back in a summer deal, so why not save seven figures by moving him now?

    • Who knows what could happen by the end of the season. Souray remains healthy, plays like an NHL player for the rest of the season in the AHL…teams MAY gain interest. How much interest? Perhaps not much, but it’s definitely a possiblity for enough to make an ugly salary trade.

      Obviously, that kind of trade is worse than re-entry waivers if we’re talking about a guy like Commodore. But if we can find an overpaid guy with 1 year left (like how we got Vandermeer for O’sullivan)…the salary savings would be identical to the re-entry option, but we also get a possibility of a player (worst case, he continues to underperform and we send him down to the AHL…doesn’t matter to us bcuz we’d be paying that equivalent salary if we put Souray on re-entry anyways).

      If we can’t find that…and all we get are offers of overpaid guys with long-term contracts…then we pass and take the re-entry option at the beginning of next season. That option isn’t going anywhere.

      It doesn’t make any sense to rush things now, just have some patience, wait it out and see how it goes.

  • @ HOFFFF:

    Your mileage may vary, but if I’m the Oilers organization a miserable Souray isn’t worth $2.25 million in actual dollars next season.

    That’s real money, and if the cost of saving that much is having Souray be happy, I’d find a way to live with it as Oilers GM.

  • book¡e

    I’m also not sure, but they were saying on the Gregor show that if he was traded but kept in the minors he wouldnt have to clear waivers. That makes me think that he could stay in the AHL until Playoff time when he could be brought up without clearing waivers.

    While I was certain that they Oilers would have to bring Souray up, after spending about 30 minutes combing the CBA, I don’t see anything that would prevent the Oilers/Rangers from making a trade that keeps Souray in the Minors.

    However, the wording does suggest that the Oilers would retain the risk of the re-entry costs even if they traded him to the Rangers (if the Rangers brought Souray through re-entry and a team claims him, the Oilers would be on hook for the 50% costs of salary).

    With that said, the language of the CBA is rather unclear on some of this and I wonder if Sather and Tambelownie are looking for some kind of loophole.

  • 99thOilerfan

    What do Souray and Brian Burke have in common? Their criticism of Oiler (mis)Management was spot on. Oiler management confirmed this by the way they handled the Souray situation. Further proof why no free agents (that are any good) would want to play here.

    • If you want to play “who is most at fault” here I think it’s pretty obvious:

      1. Are the Oilers the first team to not cater to a self-centered player the way he wants?

      2. I find it rather telling that the same player who blew off his end-of-season interview with a team that had “attitude problems with it’s veterans” would throw his team that pays him millions under the bus publicly. It’s obvious that Souray was a dressing room problem, to the extent that we removed him from all team contact, tanking our D this year.

      3. Do other NHL teams make management mistakes that are worked out in private with the player involved? Every day.

      4. What are we asking of our players for $5 million? I think it’s fair that for our money, we are allowed to have a “team first” philosophy, not having to cater to anyone’s “me first” attitude.

      By your logic, I guess every GM in the league that passed up Souray is guilty of mis-management for passing up such a team player. Our management team works for us, and I was pleased that we didn’t give in to this guy.

  • I think this comes down to whether Katz enjoys dishing out $4.5M for a guy who isn’t playing right now or not. To Tambellini, it makes absolutely no difference. Although it sure would look good if he helped his boss save some cash.

    Really, we’re not going to get anything for Souray at all. I personally have no problems seeing Souray rot in Hershey (and I like the guy.. I just am tired of Edmonton being pushed around), but I couldn’t even fathom having $4.5M, never mind just pissing it all away in one year.

  • Don’t rush Tambellini. He will need to get a good evaluation on this situation. We don’t want him to make a mistake, by moving too fast.

    Ahhhhhhh! Put Stevie on waivers. Please end this festering sore called the Tambellini/Souray pissing match. Like Stevie always says, it’s what is best for the team. If that were the case, he would resign.

  • Spec just followed up on what I put down 13 days ago…

    23 Nate sans Hate Hockey Outsider January 24 2011, 12:58PM

    “Maybe the Oilers and Rangers have something in the works…?”

    Y’all think I’m a kook but maybe I’m on to somethin…

    Your welcome.

  • There is two ways for NY to get Souray
    1. Sather makes a deal with the Islanders to take Souray on wavers as they get first dibbs on him and then trade him to NY for an asset
    2. Steve T ( and he may already have this deal in place ) has the Islanders take Souray on Wavers and then TRADES him To Edmonton for a Asset and then Edmonton Trades him to NY or some one else for a pre arranged asset .