For those of you that watch the show Jeopardy, you will understand that when answering to get money, you ask the question, with the answer given to you. Hopefully that is a given, but around these parts, you just never know.
In our case, today, the answer is: Taylor Hall & Shane Doan contracts, and Kevin Bieksa's comments on diving. The question: What are three things making news in the NHL that make you want to move to Mars and die slowly with the Sarcastic Rover?
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, there are three stories surrounding the NHL, and not one of them has anything to do with a CBA getting done anytime soon. In fact, talks broke off early yesterday, which is always encouraging. Our stories to follow are: Taylor Hall signing a $42 million / 7 year contract with the Edmonton Oilers, Shane Doan reportedly being offered $7.25 million per year for four years by the Buffalo Sabres, and Kevin Bieksa on a committee pushing to make an example of diving players.
Let that all roll around in your head, and then make the jump for discussion.
Taylor Hall Signs for $6 million per season with the Oilers
We have a running joke here at Hockey Wilderness. For those who don't quite get it, it's OK, but Hall can now by a large amount of moose pie should he desire to do so. A player with two years of experience in the NHL, a combined -12 rating, and having 95 points total just scored a $6 million a year pay day, despite his team owning his RFA rights for another five years.
The owners wanted entry level deals to last five years, and for UFA status not to come for 10 years (rather than the current 7). Unless, of course, you are Steve Tambellini, who apparently doesn't understand that Hall is, at best, a second line player, and the Oilers are the only team allowed to sign him for five years without the Oilers being compensated.
But hey, Tambellini did say it was "not just numbers with Taylor. He brings a compete level." Which, of course, may be true. I don't buy it for a second, as I think the kid is a flop, but that is neither here nor there. You don't pay a kid $6 million a year through five years of RFA status for anything but numbers. Sorry, Steve. In fairness, though, Tambellini did just piss off every stat head in the Edmonton fan base, which makes me happy so... great job, Steve!
Shane Doan Has An Offer from Buffalo for $7.25 million per Season
Uh... what? Are there two Shane Doans in the NHL? Because as I see it, the only one I know of is nearly 36 years old, and has broken the 70 point mark just twice in his career, never making it to 80 points. To put that in perspective, Zach Parise got just over $7.5 mil per, is 8 years younger, and has cracked 80 points twice, including a 94 point season.
But hey, let's bring up the fact Parise is signed for 14 years. As if that matters here.
The Sabres think they know something the rest of the world doesn't. Let me help you out Sabres, because I can tell you what is going to happen - Doan is going to be hurt more than he isn't, and if he isn't, his production is only going to go down. If you want to spend $30 million on nothing, just send me a check.
Kevin Bieksa Calling for a Crackdown on Diving
In what can only be called the best thing to happen to Wild fans in the CBA negotiations, Vancouver Canucks d-man Kevin Bieksa is calling for a crackdown on diving. Yes, really.
From Dan Rosen of NHL.com, via Pro Hockey Talk:
The players in the session, including Ottawa center Jason Spezza, Vancouver defensemanKevin Bieksa and Toronto defenseman John-Michael Liles, led an impassioned discussion on enforcing the diving/embellishment rule (Rule 64.1), Campbell told NHL.com. He said the players want to distribute a list of divers around the League so it can be posted in all 30 dressing rooms and be delivered to the on-ice officials.
"They want to get [the list] out there," Campbell said. "They want the player to be caught, whether it's on the ice by the referee or by us on video. They are all tired of diving. The object is to make them stop eventually and, by doing that, they can get it out there around the League, embarrass them. The referees will know it, too, so the divers don't get the benefit of the doubt."
A list of players that are notorious divers, you say? I could go for that. Let's help out Mr. Bieksa, shall we?
So, Mr. Bieksa, shall we crack down on a rule that would take four of your top 6 off the ice for the better part of any given game? I'm fine with that, I'm just a bit surprised you would be.
Let the Stupid Wash Over You
Just soak it in for a few minutes. Then, give us a comment on what your brain can actually process through all of this. It took me a good two hours to wrap my brain around the fact that these things actually happened. Enjoy trying to get work done at this point.