Author Topic: The 50 Contract Limit  (Read 2921 times)

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Offline cw

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The 50 Contract Limit
« on: July 11, 2011, 10:08:37 AM »
Had another look at the 50 contract limit (a thread that was active in TMLfans prospects section). I was writing it when the site went down. Capgeek has updated the Leafs Reserve list a little with Zigomanis and Dupuis added.
http://www.capgeek.com/reserve_lists.php?team_id=4&year_id=2011

With Schenn to come, they have 48 contracts total right now. McKegg & Crescenzi are obvious to slide back to junior and not count. Lombardi is on LTIR until further notice and while he is, I don't believe he counts.  So that reduces it to 45.

Assuming they land the good-sized, good-at-faceoffs 4th line center they seek, that will add one contract to the NHL roster leaving two spots open among the NHL forwards that a number of Marlies will contend for.
Lupul          Connolly              Kessel
MacArthur   Grabovski            Kulemin
Kadri          Bozak                  Armstrong
Brown         4th line Center    Orr
________                              _________

Goal and the D on the NHL roster seem fairly set to open the season with 9 contracts.

If Dupuis became a Marlie, he can probably play an effective center role in the AHL, working with Scott & Hamilton on a checking line like Foster did last year. With Zigomanis signed, they arguably would have Colborne, Zigomanis & Dupuis to provide them with three Marlies centers - needing a 4th.

For this stage of their development, junior eligible Blacker & D'Amigo probably have to play for the Marlies. Ouwya could go back to Euro to give them relief here but I also think for his development they have to see how he does in the NA game (probably ECHL). Ryan and Devane are options to send back to the CHL which would open up two contract spots if they had to. Ryan apparently skated well at the prospects camp so my guess is he gets a good look for duty on the Marlies. Not sure about Devane.

The worst case is if no one they have already signed fills out the three sports open for forwards on their NHL roster because they would have to sign/acquire three more NHL contracts. I also think they'll probably have to burn one more NHL contract to make sure they have a respectable 4th center for the Marlies (ie Boyce for example). If both those things happen, they would be at 49 and their only relief outside of trade (Mitchell & Greenop seem vulerable as dumps or Finger as a dream) would come from Ryan, Devane or Ouwya going back to their leagues of last season.

Next season, they only have 25 contracts signed right now. They'll have a lot of RFAs in the minors that will allow for some purging. So they'll get a chance to reset some. But since they're such a young NHL club, there's likely to be a little less movement from the minors than in recent years and as the good drafted kids come along, it's going to be somewhat tighter and something they'll have to manage more closely than they have in the past.

So it's not quite a bad as my first post on this was concerned with. If they do experience problems in the future, it's likely because this pool of good prospects they've drafted is developing which to me is a nice problem to have and one they haven't ever had under this CBA or in recent memory before that.

Offline BlueWhiteBlood

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2011, 11:33:34 AM »
Am I missing something here? Why do we need contract space? Other than signing a couple free agents, I think Burke has all the space he needs and if he needed more, I would think he would just pull off a trade, like he has in the past.

I think he intends to have Dupuis on the NHL team, unless something better comes along, but it sure feels like that is the plan. I only see Marlies signings from here on out, unless, as I say, something comes along and Burke just has to go for it.
BWB

Offline cw

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2011, 11:39:22 AM »
Am I missing something here? Why do we need contract space? Other than signing a couple free agents, I think Burke has all the space he needs and if he needed more, I would think he would just pull off a trade, like he has in the past.

I think he intends to have Dupuis on the NHL team, unless something better comes along, but it sure feels like that is the plan. I only see Marlies signings from here on out, unless, as I say, something comes along and Burke just has to go for it.

Ideally, you keep some slack for making deals - which we know Burke is prone to do.

If Dupuis does crack the NHL roster, they'll need two centers for the Marlies (assuming Zigomanis & Colborne stay with the Marlies). I think it'll be tough to attract two decent ones if they don't get some sort of a SPC and are offered AHL only deals. And the penalty there may be another non-playoff Marlies team.

Offline BlueWhiteBlood

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2011, 11:52:23 AM »
If Dupuis does crack the NHL roster, they'll need two centers for the Marlies (assuming Zigomanis & Colborne stay with the Marlies). I think it'll be tough to attract two decent ones if they don't get some sort of a SPC and are offered AHL only deals. And the penalty there may be another non-playoff Marlies team.

There's no doubt he needs a couple more, but like you say, I think they are either going to be prospects or minor league deals. I hope something comes our way in trade or UFA, but that isn't looking that promising. I guess I can't talk to the trade landscape, but who would we trade for that player? If it's not some kind of deal for Komisarek, I think we'd be giving up players we want to keep and I don't think you do that for a 4th line center.
BWB

Online CarltonTheBear

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2011, 07:06:20 PM »
Never quite understood the point of the 50 contract limit. It seems like something that screws over both teams and players.

Offline cw

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2011, 07:10:11 PM »
Never quite understood the point of the 50 contract limit. It seems like something that screws over both teams and players.

I believe the intent is to increase movement of lower players on the depth charts so they can't be hoarded or stuck deep down a depth chart for years by a team.

In that way and for that purpose, it isn't a bad rule. But it does penalize the teams who draft well some.

Online CarltonTheBear

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2011, 07:13:41 PM »
Never quite understood the point of the 50 contract limit. It seems like something that screws over both teams and players.

I believe the intent is to increase movement of lower players on the depth charts so they can't be hoarded or stuck deep down a depth chart for years by a team.

In that way and for that purpose, it isn't a bad rule. But it does penalize the teams who draft well some.

I figured it was intended to do something like that, but really in the case of Hanson it almost cost him his job if another team didn't see anything in him. And at the end of the day he's just gone from being a guy low on the depth charts for the Leafs to a guy low on the depth charts for the Capitals.

Offline cw

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2011, 07:41:12 PM »
Never quite understood the point of the 50 contract limit. It seems like something that screws over both teams and players.

I believe the intent is to increase movement of lower players on the depth charts so they can't be hoarded or stuck deep down a depth chart for years by a team.

In that way and for that purpose, it isn't a bad rule. But it does penalize the teams who draft well some.

I figured it was intended to do something like that, but really in the case of Hanson it almost cost him his job if another team didn't see anything in him. And at the end of the day he's just gone from being a guy low on the depth charts for the Leafs to a guy low on the depth charts for the Capitals.

That may be where he is but isn't there a BIG difference in how he got there? He was a UFA who chose Washington - he wasn't trapped or forced to go there. He could have gone to any one of the other 29 teams or Europe to take his shot. I think that's pretty important to a guy in Hanson's position and he'd be very reluctant to give that up.

Secondly, "he's just gone from being a guy low on the depth charts for the Leafs to a guy low on the depth charts" ... but that is in significant part because he's a center who would be "low on the depth charts" in most if not all NHL cities.

Thirdly, Washington has been light in center depth for a few years in my opinion. Their better checking centers Gordon, Steckel and scoring center Arnott are no longer there.

Aside from Backstrom & Laich and their kids, he's got the aged and well worn Jeff Halpern ahead of him for center. He's got tiny 5'8" 166lb Perreault ahead of him with a 45.6 faceoff win%. And he's got Marcus Johansson ahead of him who is a well regarded skill guy that hasn't put up great numbers and is a bit of a lightweight with a 40.5 faceoff win%. The talk I recall some years ago was that Johansson was preferred for the wing. With Fehr gone and Fleischmann gone, that may well happen.

As crazy as this might sound given how well Washington talent is regarded, Hanson actually has some sort of a legit shot for the 4th line checking role - either out the gate or when one of the centers goes down with injury. Coach Boudreau played with his Dad or uncle so there may also be a case of "it helps if someone knows you" going on here as well.

Online CarltonTheBear

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2011, 07:52:20 PM »
That may be where he is but isn't there a BIG difference in how he got there? He was a UFA who chose Washington - he wasn't trapped or forced to go there. He could have gone to any one of the other 29 teams or Europe to take his shot. I think that's pretty important to a guy in Hanson's position and he'd be very reluctant to give that up.

I agree that in this case it worked out pretty well for Hanson. And for most players, getting a chance to be an UFA at his age is a pretty exciting opportunity. But saying that he "could have gone to any one of the other 29 teams" isn't exactly accurate. I know you just meant that the opportunity is there, but really how many teams were lining up to talk to his agent about him? Considering he couldn't crack a not-so-great line-up last season (although I'm in the group that felt he definitely should have been on that team), and didn't really look too great in the AHL, I can't imagine the list of suitors was very long.

I guess what I'm trying to say is if I was a fringe NHLer, becoming an UFA would be a pretty scary thought to me. Yeah, it could result in a 2nd opportunity to make the NHL, but it could also remove you from it entirely.

Offline cw

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2011, 08:05:19 PM »
That may be where he is but isn't there a BIG difference in how he got there? He was a UFA who chose Washington - he wasn't trapped or forced to go there. He could have gone to any one of the other 29 teams or Europe to take his shot. I think that's pretty important to a guy in Hanson's position and he'd be very reluctant to give that up.

I agree that in this case it worked out pretty well for Hanson. And for most players, getting a chance to be an UFA at his age is a pretty exciting opportunity. But saying that he "could have gone to any one of the other 29 teams" isn't exactly accurate. I know you just meant that the opportunity is there, but really how many teams were lining up to talk to his agent about him? Considering he couldn't crack a not-so-great line-up last season (although I'm in the group that felt he definitely should have been on that team), and didn't really look too great in the AHL, I can't imagine the list of suitors was very long.

I guess what I'm trying to say is if I was a fringe NHLer, becoming an UFA would be a pretty scary thought to me. Yeah, it could result in a 2nd opportunity to make the NHL, but it could also remove you from it entirely.

Under the old CBA, Burke could have qualified him for depth and called it a day giving him a two-way contract something like Gregg Scott got
http://www.capgeek.com/players/display.php?id=1244
If the Marlies got too crowded at center, maybe hello ECHL, buried until he's 31 years old. (not Burke's style to do something like that)

But Burke is so limited by that 50 contract limit, he can't do much stuff like that.

As for "any one of the other 29 teams", yes - theoretically they were available to him but in actual practice there would likely be on only a few where he stood a chance. As it turned out, he must figure he has some sort of a chance to crack the Caps (and maybe only tie them over until the deadline ..). But that's still very good bucks for a player like Hanson if he can pull it off.

Offline hockeyfan1

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2011, 12:12:36 AM »
Good for Hanson that he found employment elsewhere.  At least, it gives him the opportunity to showcase what he can do (too bad it wasn't going to happen in a Leaf uniform).  Time will tell.

I like the prospects currently in the Leaf system.  As such, not every single one of them will pan out, still, Burke and co. will have more than slim pickings, in the develoment system, for the foreseeable future.

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Re: The 50 Contract Limit
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2011, 12:12:36 AM »