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Kovalchuk's Next Contract

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As the Thrashers head towards free agency one factor they must consider is that in two years from now Kovalchuk (assuming he re-signs) will probably eat up close to $10 million in cap space. There is a hot rumor over on that Vinny Lecavalier has re-signed for for 9 years $77 million ($8.55 per year cap hit). Last year Alexander Ovechkin re-upped with the Capitals for an average of $9.5 million per hear. Both of those guys are top 10 scorers and comparables for Kovalchuk.

Now I don't think that the Thrashers are going to come anywhere close to spending the cap maximum of $56 million this year, but they do have to make sure to leave some room under the cap for his eventual enormous salary.

It also makes me wonder how much money Hossa will ultimately receive as a unrestricted free agent. He has reportedly turned down two offers of $7 per year from both the Thrashers and Penguins. Perhaps, his agent is telling him that as one of just three premier UFA under the age of 30 (Redden and Campbell being the other two) he could end up receiving a huge payoff if a few teams get into a bidding war for his services.

I can imagine a team like Columbus which has sold out many games but never made the playoffs making Hossa an huge $9 million per year offer. After all the Blue Jackets have been raking in the money from their fans and still have not yet made the playoffs. Of course, if Hossa is serious about wanting to play for a contender he wouldn't accept that offer--only time will tell.


Here are a couple of interesting things I've been reading lately:

Earl Sleek over at Battle of California posts about how scoring continues to fall in the "New NHL" and has a nice looking chart to illustrate it.

PuckDaddy speculates the new ownership in Tampa Bay may target Marian Hossa.

Seth Rorabaugh did a great survey where he looked at all the current NHLers and showed per team what round the guys one their roster were drafted. James Mirtle turned those numbers into a cool graph which shows that 48% of all current NHL players were taken in the 1st or 2nd round.