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RUMOURS – Will Lucic for Eriksson ever die?

It’s Thursday! That means it’s another opportunity to dig around the NHL and discuss some rumours that could have an effect on the Oilers offseason plans.

This week, there a lot speculation and for the most part, it’s really dividing the Oilers fan base.

LUCIC FOR ERIKSSON WILL NEVER DIE

This rumour has been around for over a year now but I will say that it’s never reached the point it’s currently at. It seems like every week there’s a new wrinkle being added to this rumour and lately, it’s been the talk that the Oilers will need to add a sweetener.

We’ve heard everything from a mid-round pick to Jesse Puljujarvi, which Elliotte Friedman suggested on Sportsnet Radio in Vancouver.

Simply because Eriksson has one less year on his deal, I could see why the Oilers might need to add something to make that trade work but if the cost is anything more than a fourth-round pick, I think the Oilers should just hold onto Lucic.

We are just over a week away from the draft and I expect we will hear a lot more about these two names between now and the end of the draft weekend in Vancouver.

JETS & OILERS A FIT?

Dec 16, 2018; Winnipeg, Manitoba, CAN; Winnipeg Jets forward Nikolaj Ehlers (27) is congratulated by his team mates on his goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the third period at Bell MTS Place. Mandatory Credit: Terrence Lee-USA TODAY Sports

I’ve mentioned this a few times, but I really think we could see these two teams swing something this summer. The name Nikolaj Ehlers has been thrown around a lot but lately, I’ve been hearing more and more about Jack Roslovic potentially being traded away this summer. The rumours I’ve been reading suggest that Roslovic wants to go somewhere he could get regular minutes and there simply isn’t that opportunity in Winnipeg.

Roslovic is a 22-year-old who can play both centre and right wing meaning he could fill one of two holes on the Oilers roster. In 109 NHL games, he has scored just 14 goals and 24 assists, but I think it’s reasonable to believe that he’s going to start taking some big steps forward. There were some extended stretches this season where he was riding shotgun with Winnipeg’s big guns and he didn’t look out of place.

If Roslovic does indeed want out and Winnipeg wants to recoup some future assets or young players, then I think there could really be a fit here and I believe Roslovic would thrive in the Oilers top sip.

PERRY RUMOURS FLY

Pierre LeBrun has been reporting for about a week now that the Anaheim Ducks will be aggressively shopping veteran forward Corey Perry and if they can’t find a trade partner, then they will likely buy out the 34-year-old.

The buyout route makes very little sense to me. He only has two years left and his buyout isn’t pretty.

Why not just bite the contract for one more year and hope Perry bounces back a little bit. He did battle injuries last season, only playing in 31 games, and the Ducks have $9 million in cap space with 13 forwards, four defensemen and a goalie signed for next season. That’s not including the fact that Ryan Kesler will go on LTIR when the season begins, freeing up another $6.8 million. A buyout makes little sense, but it appears as though they might do it.

Earlier this week Darren Dreger was on TSN 690 in Montreal and mentioned that Edmonton might be a fit if Perry becomes an unrestricted free agent. I don’t think Dreger was saying that the Oilers would 100% go after Perry, I think he was just saying it might make sense for them to consider it. While I can see why Oilers fans would be angry at that suggestion, I agree with Dreger and think it might make sense.

I can’t stand watching Perry torment the Oilers with his dirty hits and cheap plays. I honestly cannot stand him as a player. But, the bottom line is that the Oilers need scoring wingers and even in an injury-riddled season where he struggled to get in a groove, Perry scored at a 15 goal pace. The Oilers could use 15 goals and the Oilers could use wingers. Maybe a full offseason worth of training will turn things around for Perry?

If the deal is for around $2.5 million and is only two years long, I think that could really benefit the Oilers, but I expect a lot of you will disagree with me.

COYOTES EYEING DUCHENE

Pierre LeBrun had a handful of very interesting nuggets in his recent notebook and the piece on John Chayka and the Arizona Coyotes being interested in a big-ticket free agent like Matt Duchene caught my attention.

The Coyotes were decimated by injuries this season and still almost managed to squeak into a playoff spot. Next season, they will be adding Antti Raanta and Nick Schmaltz to their lineup, which will bolster their group. Add in youngsters like Clayton Keller, Christian Dvorak, Christian Fischer, and Alex Galchenyuk and it’s easy to see why some think the Coyotes might take another step forward next season.

If they manage to land Duchene or any high-end free agent then the competition for playoff spots in the Pacific Division will grow even more and that’s obviously not good for the Oilers.

THE 2019 DRAFT PARTY

  • Where? At the Canadian Brewhouse (Lewis Estates – 1320 Webber Greens Dr NW)
  • When? Friday, June 21st, doors open at 4:30 pm
  • How much? $10 per ticket
  • What do you get? Free pizza card from the Brewhouse, $10 Oodle Noodle promo card, Nation stickers, chance to win a signed RNH jersey provided by ATB Financial and draw prizes.
  • Where can I buy? Get your tickets here before they sell out!
  • Why? Because we love to party

Tickets are available here and will be on sale straight through until the date of the party. Thanks so much for the support and we look forward to seeing you there.

  • Hemmercules

    Chia would have dealt Lucic for Louie already just because he felt like it and probably would have thrown in a top prospect to boot. I expect Holland make a more calculated decision there. I don’t think it happens. Lucic maybe gets moved but I doubt its to Vancouver. No thanks to Perry unless its very cheap.

    • J-rok

      We still need Lucic for playoffs for his bruising presence so don’t give up on the big guy, besides Eriksson is another soft player like I said before that we don’t need. The Oilers would regret trading Lucic.

      • Hemmercules

        So, keep Lucic and his 4 million dollar overpayment just in case you maybe make the playoffs? What about the 82 games before the playoffs even happen? If he’s a bum in the regular season I can’t see him suddenly elevate his game in the playoffs. Keeping 6 mil on the books for nothing more than some playoff toughness seems crazy to me. That said, I don’t want Eriksson either, never said that.

        You never know that they will regret it until it happens and we see the return, it could be the best move they ever make for we all know. Time will tell.

        I’m actually fine with keeping him this year and seeing if he can bounce back a bit under Tippet if they don’t find a reasonable deal this summer. I see this next season as another playoff miss anyway. History tells me he’s no better and maybe a bit worse this year but I hope he proves us all wrong and puts in time this summer to improve his game enough be a competitor again.

        • J-rok

          Ya I do agree it’s crazy to have a player just for playoffs but I like Lucic I’d like to see get a chance to turn things around and like you said could be another playoff miss. I really hate the idea of playing against Lucic and some players the oilers trade away excel, I don’t want him to have success after trading him.

  • GoOilersGuy

    Lucic/Ericsson straight up is the only fair trade. Adding a late round pick, at worst, to sweeten it. Lucic is the better player and is younger. Adding JP is ridiculous. If that’s the ask then let’s hope Lucic has a bit of comeback season with the Oilers so his trade value improves going forward.

  • TKB2677

    When I hear rumors, especially when they come from some hockey sites, I listen but don’t pay much attention. But this Lucic rumor just keeps coming and keeps growing and more and more people are picking it up. Now more credible people are picking it up. I have even heard Stafford, the mouth piece of the Oilers talk about it. Usually when Stafford picks up something, he does it a week or 2 in advance of it happening, basically prepping the fan base for it. So I actually think Lucic will get moved, there is just too many people talking about it. Plus Benning comes out the other say saying he wants to get bigger, stronger and more physical at forward. I really doubt JP is the sweetner though. If Chia was here, I would believe but not Holland.

    Sure Eriksson if that is the trade has 1 less year but he’s also 2 years older which makes a difference and Lucic brings a dimension that if you watch the playoffs still have a place and teams value. If Eriksson was making way less money or had way less years then I could see a sweetner but he makes the same, is older and has no dimension when he isn’t scoring. So I don’t think much of a sweetner will be required.

  • RyanCoke

    I read in a David Staples article that Milan Lucic’s no movement clause is gone when they trade him. So the team he is traded to will not have to protect him in expansion. That makes it much easier to move him.

    • Jason Gregor

      That isn’t correct. He will agree to waive it to the team who acquires him, but once there he gets it back. Numerous GMs and Agents confirmed this with me. The players waives it for the trade, but gets it back when he arrives to his new team.

      • FISTO Siltanen

        Jason – this rumour about losing a NMC after being traded probably comes from PK trade to Nashville.

        He had a NMC that kicked in July 1st that year but Nashville chose not to pick it up.

        How is this possible?

        Thanks

      • crabman

        What I have read in another article, sorry can’t remember where, that a NMC isn’t a set in stone part of a player’s contract. A player may be asked to waive his NMC for the purpose of the trade but the team trading for the player may request it be waived entirely. The player is also within his right to say that he will only waive his NMC for the trade. At that point the team trading for him can choose to trade for the player with the NMC attached or pass on the trade.
        Not sure if this is exactly accurate considering Staples says his NMC goes away when traded and Gregor says it doesn’t.

      • OriginalPouzar

        This in not 100% correct Jason – the acquiring team gets the option of allowing the clause to continue or fall away. Presumably, most would make the clause continuing a condition of their waiving.

      • RyanCoke

        Maybe David Staples should do a little more digging before writing it in articles because when I read that I assume it’s been confirmed because his reputation is on the line when he writes something.

  • McDude

    I’ve heard a lot of people talking about a sweetener in a Lucic for Eriksson deal. No thanks. IMO, at this point in their careers, Lucic is far more valuable than Eriksson, even if his hands are now encased in cement. The ONLY reason you trade him is for the one less year. Personally, I wouldn’t make that deal anyway. If you can’t find a taker for him on a deal that is reasonable, keep him for another year and see what happens.

    Kurt Leavins also brought up a very good point last week. Do you really want to have Lucic playing for a division rival? He’s still an intimidating presence–having to play against him seven or eight times a year and potentially in the playoffs would not be fun. Remember how he intimidated that prick Tkachuk into backing off after the game in December? I’d rather he wasn’t doing that to our players all the time.

    • TKB2677

      I agree with what you said. However, I think moving Lucic might be necessary just to change the room and the feel of the team to the player. If you think about, Lucic was the first really big player acquisition that Chia did. He had signed Sekera the year before and that was important but Lucic was the first big one. In his UFA year, he was the big name. Supposedly he had other offers from other teams similar in term. There is rumors Montreal offered him more money but he CHOOSE Edmonton, which at the time was huge. Chia traded Hall and then brought in Lucic which those 2 moves was Chia putting his stamp on the team. Then they go out, almost win the Pacific Division and get screwed out of the West finals.

      Then the bad stuff happens.

      They lose Sekera on a cheap hit. Klefbom struggles with injury. Lucic’s game falls off a cliff. Larsson’s dad up and dies. Talbot forgets how to play goal. So they go from being a contender to crap in a year. Then it continues. Lucic still can’t play, guys are underperform, Talbot can’t stop a beach ball, Chia starts making knee jerk, stupid moves, and they are crap again. So a move of Lucic is probably more about just hitting the reset button. Chia put the team in the wrong direction and hamstringed the team so trading Lucic is a signal those days are over.

      • McDude

        Yup, I can see that. Moving Lucic would certainly be good for the team as a reset and because of the cap relief. But I wouldn’t trade him within the division if I can avoid it, and certainly not for a player who has much less value than he has. And this stuff about Eriksson and Tippett is nuts. That was a decade ago.

        I read an article on another site this morning about a proposed trade for Nikolaj Ehlers. It went Ehlers for Puljujarvi, Bear, and the second round pick. The problem I see is that the Oilers can’t afford it. If they could get rid of Lucic without retaining too much salary (and without giving up too much), I’d be tempted to do that trade. The trick is getting rid of Lucic.

      • All Ice

        Agree that this may be a good thing within the room if you’re bringing a character player back. Eriksson might cause as many issues. Currently doesn’t get along with his coach and complains about it publicly. It might just be his current situation that triggered it but it doesn’t bode well. Not like he’d suddenly be playing 19 minutes a game here and if he can’t handle that reality…

  • Glencontrolurstik

    I’m taking a moment to congratulate the Blues on winning the Stanley Cup last night. It was a hard fought battle as we all saw. The one positive for the Oilers is that, the Blues are first-hand proof that a team in utter turmoil can come back in such a short time and win the prize. That said, with very little change to the line-up. Mindset in their case had so much to do with that. The Oil could learn something there. Congrats Blues, for downing the Bruins, I hate that team.

    • FISTO Siltanen

      Felt the same way both this season and last. Felt Oilers were a week away from having a 9-1 streak to squeak into the playoff races.

      Never happened. Glad for the Blues. Good things happen when you work hard as a team.

      Screw the Bruins.

      • Glencontrolurstik

        100% agree. It also helps to have Cinderella playing in your goalie farm. What a story for the Jr. Vet, who was (previous to being called-up) loaned out to another team cause he was basically useless…

        • Redbird62

          Binnington was never useless. In the minors he had one slightly off season back in 15-16 with an okay .907 save percentage and a .500 record, but otherwise generally had good to excellent save percentages and a winning record throughout his minor career. The one year he was loaned was because St. Louis went that season without an AHL affiliate. Before being called up, he was 11-4 with a .927 save % for the Rampage, the Blues new AHL affiliate.

          • Glencontrolurstik

            9 years in the minors without being called up, does not depict the essence of a great goalie. He’s 26 years old and hadn’t played in the NHL yet, but one game as a back-up. Throw stats out all you want, but he basically was a bench warmer at the NHL level only to play lights out for the last 5 months to win a Stanley cup…. That to me is a “Cinderella Story”. A career Junior Player is a useless NHLer, not in this case.
            Most players would find another calling after 9 years in the minors, approaching their 30’s.

          • Redbird62

            Kind on loose with numbers there. First he had 2 more seasons of junior after his draft shouldn’t count as time in the “minors”. Then he had 5 and a half years in the pro minors, almost all of it in the AHL, so that is still a total of 7 and and half seasons after draft not 9. Being 25 and a half when finally making the big jump to the NHL is not approaching 30 and is not that far off a lot of NHL starters getting their big break. Ben Bishop and Pekka Rinne are two of many examples of goalies who didn’t make the big time until 25. I agree however, it is still a great story and a pleasant surprise to the Blues, but again the Blues were wise and perhaps a little lucky to keep his rights the whole time.

  • Just facts

    Every rumour and report I’ve seen notes that the Canucks are interested in a Lucic/ Ericsson deal, I don’t recall seeing any reports that the Oilers have expressed interest in the deal.

  • Spydyr

    The only issue I have with Lucic is the ridiculous contract Chia gave him. If Lucic was making two million I would keep him all day long. The Oiler need his intimidation to keep the other teams honest. Just remember back to the days when the Oilers were getting sand kicked into their face every game

    I have absolutely no use for Ericsson whatsoever. If anything Vancouver should be putting in the sweetener.

    • Glencontrolurstik

      Finally,… That last line says everything. I am forced to watch every Canuck game if I want to watch TV when they are playing (daughter is a Canuckl-head) and I’ll tell you that if you as an Oiler Fan are upset with Lucic’s play & effort, don’t get Eriksson as a replacement. You haven’t seen ineptitude and a frustrating player yet. Holland would be just throwing away money.
      Interesting about Eriksson, Wasn’t he another Peter Chiarelli bust? Tyler Seguin or something? I seem to recall that?

    • Kneedroptalbot

      Spyder, I have to disagree with you on this one. (I’m usually in your corner).
      Ericksson can be put on the ice in all situations (PK and PP), he is a good checker and can shadow 1st line players. Lucic on the other hand, you have to pick his spots, doesn’t skate well enough to check fast forwards.
      Also Lucic had a full NMC and will require protection for Seattle.
      Ericksson is a poor contract, but much more versitile than Lucic. Also 1 year less on the contract.

    • Hemmercules

      Looch’s intimidation factor is becoming more and more useless every year. He couldn’t even intimidate a goalie. And with his limited minutes against bottom lines he’s never out there to protect anyone worth protecting anyway. These days guys just skate away if they dont want to fight. There was a grand total of 3 fights in the playoff this year, all in the first round. I agree though, if he was 2 mil great, but they can’t pay 6 mil for a third line guy that doesn’t really do anything that well. Hopefully Holland can move him but maybe Tippet wants to get ahold of him for a year and see what he can do.

  • Axe

    If this trade goes down then It better be a one for one..like numerous fans and some writers have stated lucic’s age and physical dimension make up for the one less year in contract ..I also see lucic as having more potential to rebound slightly (not saying he is gonna go back to his Boston self )than Erickson. If the Oilers are gonna throw in a sweetener (which I dont agree with )…it better be like Tyler said a fourth round or less ..otherwise lucic can play here next year ..would rather that than giving up a good prospect or high draft pick …

  • OriginalPouzar

    I’d like to see some actual reasoning as to why Eriksson has less value.

    If skill in the bottom 6 and help on the PK are things that Oilers could use:

    Lucic has this mystique of intimidation and deterrence which, although I think is overblown, has some value.

    Other than that, Eriksson is the better player with a broader range of “skills”. Lucic has produced at average to below average 4th line rates for three years. Eriksson has been producing at 3rd line rates (apx 1.5 P/60). Eriksson has PKd essentially his entire career, averaging 1:30 on the PK during his 3 years in Vancouver and, the numbers while he is on the ice are excellent to very excellent. If you add in the PK numbers while in Boston they border on elite. Eriksson has also shown to be able to play tough minutes against elites and take on a high amount of defensive zone starts.

    Eriksson is essentially an extremely overpaid 3rd line player while Lucic is an extremely overpaid replacement level player.

    An argument can be made that the ages and further cliff falling could favor Eriksson – Eriksson is 3 years older, there is a good chance he’s already fallen off his cliff due to age. Lucic has fallen off his cliff during the end of his prime years in his late 20s and, I believe, now 30. What happens when he’s 32 – he could fall even farther.

    • Rock11

      OP you are preaching to the knuckle draggers on this one. A significant portion of Oilers fandom still longs for Dave Semenko cracking heads. It is questionable as if that player type ever had value and even if it did the value of an enforcer type has never been lower.
      Lucic had a PP heater 3 seasons ago that mask his complete and utter futility as an Oiler. He simply should not be in an NHL lineup based on his play the last 2 seasons. As for the comments about his character and great attitude I call BS. Frustrated Taylor Hall had better body language than Milan. I think it is eminently fair to question Lucic’s effort particularly towards the end of the 2017-18 season.
      Final point is this. If one area of the Oilers team had been, to use an OP word, materially better over the last two years that may have gotten this team into the playoffs it is the PK. For all his warts Louie is still an excellent to elite player on the PK. That alone has more value than anything Lucic is bringing to the ice these days.

  • Rama Lama

    If this deal is made, I suspect that history will NOT be kind to our new GM……….I’m not sure in any scenario Lucic for Erickson is a good deal, add players to “sweeten the pot”, is bordering on insanity!

    Yes Lucic had a bad year, but I would rather a player that has a great attitude, physicality, than a soft player whose best year have come and gone. If Ken Holland makes this deal he is as stupid as some of our past GM’s .

    Good god, where are we going now?

  • kormega

    @DarrenDreger
    Trade discussions will heat up in the days leading up to next weeks draft. Mentioned Vancouver’s interest in Nikita Zaitsev last week. Sounds like the Oilers have some interest as well.

    • Glencontrolurstik

      Now you are really driving up the comments?… Put it this way, Zaitsev would be a perfect Canuck with Hutton… As Spydyr so eloquently stated,… there is a “give a fart meter” that has to be taken into account when talking about Zaitsev. I think his cap-hit is 5+, so if you want a D-man who can ice the puck consistently & pay him 5+, go for it…
      Ask any Leaf fan about their level of frustration with this guy. I have to hope the pro-scouts (whoever they are now) will realize this.

    • I really don’t want Lucic traded in the division for a player who is cashing pay checks. We all know that he is going to make Ken look bad and snap out of his comma, If he wants a trade then play your way out of here. A move to Vancouver sounds like his dream move and we get a player that we can’t wait to rid of. We can’t be scared to press box him when he is mailing it in. I don’t think we have ever tried it.

  • Goaltender Interference

    Way I look at it this will be the first big test for Holland. If this ‘trade’ happens (or doesn’t happen) it will be the first indication for us fans who we having sitting in our GMs chair now.

    Anything less than a simple one-for-one swap means we’re stuck with Chiarelli v 2.0. Hell, Stinky Pete would have already made the trade by now and thrown in Bouchard and our 2nd for good measure.

    So the fact the trade hasn’t happened yet is a good sign. However the fact that everyone keeps talking about it isn’t. You’d think if there was no truth to the rumours that they would have died by now – not picked up momentum.

    Even at one-to-one this is a terrible trade for the Oilers that Vancouver wins hands down. If Holland doesn’t decline than we know that nothing has changed and the inmates are still running the asylum.

    • Cageyvet

      One for one Canucks lose this trade (I’m a Canucks fan). Neither player is worth 6 million, so an extra year sucks, and you can’t even send Lucic to the farm, as well as having to protect him for expansion.

      I don’t understand Oilers fans who think Lucic being younger or better (if he is) makes any difference. He is brutally overpaid, so an extra year is another year of garbage value. You are dumping an abysmal contract, not trading Lucic, and your contract sucks worse than the one we signed with Eriksson.

      I don’t blame anyone for not caring for Eriksson, and not wanting to pay Vancouver to take Lucic, but I think every GM in the league in Holland’s spot would make a one for one deal. Cap space is valuable, especially 6 million. Just ask Tampa, Winnipeg, etc.

      To be clear, these are contract dumps, nobody cares who the better player is. They both have extreme negative value to their team’s salary cap and trade flexibility.

      Maybe I can make it clear. Pretend you’re in prison for 3 years, a fairly crappy prison. Do you agree to go to a marginally-less-crappy prison for 4 years and tell yourself that was a good move? This is why the Canucks will not do a straight up trade. We need conjugal visits tossed in to survive another year.

      • Goaltender Interference

        Who cares about contract term. It’s essentially six of one or a half dozen of the other in this case…

        Let’s use your prison analogy. Would you rather go to prison alongside the guy who everyone else in the yard is afraid of? Or the weakling who won’t even stand up for himself, let alone his friends?

        McDavid takes enough cheap shots as it is. I can’t imagine how many more he and the rest of the team would be taking without the presence of Lucic on the roster. Who cares whether he scores or not? Saying he has no value is like saying Semenko had no value playing with the team in the 80s.

        Yeah – you’re obviously a Canucks fan. You guys should go find another sucker to peddle your trash to. Chiarelli doesn’t work here anymore.

        • Cageyvet

          I’m just saying the Oilers also need to find another sucker. I didn’t say Lucic has no value, just that at 6 million, 4 years, a no move clause that may or may not stick, and if it doe costs us an expansion protection slot, is negative value.

          Why do the Oilers want to ditch him? Bad value. I’ve already said I don’t see the Oilers paying what the Canucks want. You’re best served with a better deal than Lucic+ for Eriksson, but one for one you’d win. You suck up one year with Eriksson and have a ton of teams to dump him on and escape on the cheap. That’s our plan with Eriksson, unless you still had Chiarelli and we could fleece you.

          Just don’t tell me how much value Lucic has, he’s a boat anchor that your fanbase has been trying to run out of town all season. If he was so valuable, there wouldn’t be ten thousands posts on OilersNation about what a useless sack of crap he is. I refer you to Canucks Army for similar about Eriksson. I personally hope both teams find a better way to deal with their respective problems.

  • Gary Chalmers

    I would take Ehlers or Perry, Jesse P is an overpayment to get Erickson out of Vancouver, not worth it on a guy 3 years older than Lucic, nice try J Benning.

  • crabman

    What if Lucic for Eriksson is step 1 in clearing cap space? Trade 1 for 1. Pay Eriksson’s $4M signing bonus July 1st and move him to a team that prefers players with higher cap hits than actual dollars owed. He would carry an annual cap hit of $6M but only be owed $9M over the 3 years. If the Oilers had to they could retain some salary. Even retaining $1M per would save the Oilers $5M a year and be out of the contract all together 1 year sooner than the Lucic contract. Ofcourse to make this work a 2nd deal would need to be in the works. But a creative GM could make a Lucic for Eriksson trade work.

    • Goaltender Interference

      You’re assuming Eriksson can be moved after the trade.

      If there was any interest in the guy from other teams out there, The Canucks would have already moved him.

      No – what people are talking about here is replacing one boat anchor with another – but without the functional toughness of the first. Overpaid as he is, at least Lucic brings another aspect to the game.

      • crabman

        maybe Vancouver is unwilling to pay $7M just for him to not play for them. Maybe Edmonton isn’t either. I’m spitballing ideas of how a Lucic dor Eriksson deal could actually work for Edmonton. Ofcourse I am no more an insider than you and that’s why neither one of us know enough to make a blanket statement that no teams are interested in him.
        Does a team get interested in him when they only need to pay him $3M real dollars per year? How about if a prospect or pick are added in as a sweetener? Fact is we can’t know because we are not in a position to know.