BY DANIEL DI NICOLANTONIO – FAN FUEL BLOGGER
As CBA talks continue between the NHL and NHLPA, there have been discussions on allowing teams to buyout one player (and possibly two) and not take a hit against the salary cap. Even though they are being saved from taking a cap hit, the owners want to look at the cash they are saving in total as well. So it is not going to be about the biggest contract all the time. Let’s look at teams in the Pacific Division.
Buyout choices are based on players that have contracts that extend past 2012-13; salaries are the average per season.
Anaheim Ducks: Sheldon Souray (D) – Three Years / $3.66 million AND Bryan Allen (D) $3.5 million
There aren’t many choices but two that could potentially be bought out are Sheldon Souray and Bryan Allen. Similar contracts, a little separation in age but there are possibilities for Anaheim to make a splash in the summer, even after re-signing Ryan Getzlaf and/or Corey Perry.
Dallas Stars: Aaron Rome (D) – Three Years / $1.5 million
After the 2012-13 season, the amount of players that receive higher pay shifts from offence to defence. Dallas is another team that has a situation similar to Anaheim that cannot do anything but help improve the club. As a result, the not so big contract of Aaron Rome has been chosen.
Matt Greene appeared in all 82 games of the 2011-12 season and even though his big physique and style of play does assist the Kings, his $2.95 million can be available for young defencemen Slava Voynov and Alec Martinez.
Phoenix Coyotes: Derek Morris (D) – Two Years / $2.75 million
The entry level contract Oliver Ekman-Larsson will need to be satisfied. Phoenix will see quite a bit of contracts expire come this summer, other options for buyout are slim.
San Jose Sharks: Martin Havlat (F) – Three Years / $5 million
Well, San Jose was one of the teams with a difficult choice and it may or may not be a surprise considering the other options. Don’t think we will see a player like Dan Boyle bought out as he will have just one year left on his contract and could be a good bargaining chip in a trade. Martin Havlat’s $5 million for 2013-14 and 2014-15 may be more valuable back in the pockets of the Sharks depending on how the wealth is spread.
More NHL: Atlantic Division buyout options