Free Agency Day 1 – Final Stretch


It has been a crazy day. As we speak the Calgary Flames are pitching a plan to Brad Richards. Yes, the Calgary Flames are apparently in the race as well. Fitting, considering it has been a day characterized by the vast overpayment of free agents. Be it the free spending Terry Pegula with his 10 year defensemen deals, or with signing Ville Leino to a six year, $27M deal. Or is the definition of crazy perhaps better applied to Florida, a team that – in reaching the cap floor and then some – signed no less than six players in two days to a total sum of 68.6 million dollars, including Thomas Fleischmann on a four year, $18M contract. Remember, that’s the guy who missed nearly 3/4 of the season because of a serious illness that almost cost him his hockey career. How about rivals signing their most hated rival players?

Don’t worry, we have that too. The Flyer signed former Penguin favorites Jaromir Jagr and Maxime Talbot to contracts earlier in the day. Talbot signed a multi year deal (5 years, $9 million) while the ninth leading scorer in NHL history, Jaromir Jagr, signed on for one year/$3.3 million. Crazy enough? Well it’s only getting crazier with the big fish still out there.

While the Rangers and Kings seem to be getting the most mention in the Richards’ sweepstakes at the moment, with the ridiculousness of the money going around the trade route for a better contract might make increasingly more sense. Not only that, it could give the Leafs a distinct cap advantage over some of these other in-conference teams that are sloppily throwing around money today. To a certain extent though, these type of salary figures are something we’re going to have to get used to with the new heights of the cap floor and ceiling.