Lou Lamoriello doesn’t like disclosing the details of his contracts, but he apparently has no issue divulging how he feels about them.
While speaking to reporters after signing centre Bo Horvat to an eight-year extension, the New York Islanders general manager declined to share any specifics about the contract before stating bluntly: “All I can tell ya is it’s too long and it’s too much money.”
“I mean, you want the truth? Next question,” he added, while chuckling.
Well, the Vancouver Canucks might agree.
Despite Lamoriello’s intent to keep things private, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman has since reported the deal is worth $8.5 million per season and, according to CapFriendly, it does not include any signing bonuses.
The contract comes just days after Lamoriello traded Anthony Beauvillier, Aatu Raty and a conditional first-round pick to the Canucks for Horvat, who was a pending unrestricted free agent before signing the extension.
Within Lamoriello’s blunt assessment of the deal, he had more than enough good things about the newly acquired player.
“I’m pleased that we’ve got a player of this calibre, who brings it every night, is a 200-foot player, and there’s no question he’ll be an asset to our team,” he said of Horvat, who has yet to play a game on Long Island.
Lamoriello later added: “Contracts these days are too long.”
Horvat, 28, had played his entire career with the Canucks, becoming captain, but couldn’t reach an agreement to stay in Vancouver, leading to his move to the Islanders.
“I believe we’ve taken our best shot. The contract we have on the table for Bo right now is fair value for what he’s done up to this year,” Canucks president of hockey operations Jim Rutherford said on Jan. 16. “It’s certainly under market value for what he’s done this year so we’re in a pickle here. He’s had a career year, and he’s looking for his money. He deserves it. I don’t blame him.
“Even with what we have on the table for him now without any changes … we’re well over the cap on projections. There are ways of moving money around but the fact of the matter is it’s always a tough fit.”
The Canucks, who entered the season right up against the cap, signed fellow centre J.T. Miller last off-season to a seven-year, $56-million extension which kicks in next season.