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Kovalchuk and "Cap Recapture"

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Capgeek has changed their calculator and amended their FAQ, apparently he must've gotten some wires crossed.  Kovalchuk's contract now carries a 2.6M penalty if he retires in 2024.

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Larry Brooks also wrote in his column this weekend explaining his numbers were way off too and that his revised numbers matches those of Capgeek's revised numbers.

 

This is very good news for the Devils.

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Larry Brooks also wrote in his column this weekend explaining his numbers were way off too and that his revised numbers matches those of Capgeek's revised numbers.

 

This is very good news for the Devils.

 

It really doesn't change anything.  Kovalchuk was never going to play those $1M years.

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It really doesn't change anything.  Kovalchuk was never going to play those $1M years.

 

Any cap hit for a player who isn't going to be playing is not good.  However it sure beats paying the amounts that were thrown out last week using the erroneous formula.

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Any cap hit for a player who isn't going to be playing is not good.  However it sure beats paying the amounts that were thrown out last week using the erroneous formula.

 

The erroneousness of the formula has hardly changed at all for relevant years.  Kovalchuk has a $4M year in 2019-20, then his contract goes to $1M for 3 years only to go back to $3M and $4M at the end.  Under the erroneous formula, if Kovalchuk left the NHL in 2020 (which certainly seems to be how the contract is structured), the Devils would have a dead cap hit of $26.6M spread out over 5 years.  Under the revised formula, they have a dead cap hit of 23.3M spread out over 5 years.

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The erroneousness of the formula has hardly changed at all for relevant years.  Kovalchuk has a $4M year in 2019-20, then his contract goes to $1M for 3 years only to go back to $3M and $4M at the end.  Under the erroneous formula, if Kovalchuk left the NHL in 2020 (which certainly seems to be how the contract is structured), the Devils would have a dead cap hit of $26.6M spread out over 5 years.  Under the revised formula, they have a dead cap hit of 23.3M spread out over 5 years.

Unless Kovy players 1 or 2 of those $1m years, then it changes dramatically.

I'll grant you it's unlikely that he plays all 5 trailing years, but he might play a few. Why? if he's still in good condition and is on a competitive team, making $1m a year to have a shot at the cup is better making nothing and watching on TV. He's 37 and 38 in these years, not exactly useless for a player of his caliber, and since we are going to get stuck with his cap hit no matter what, paying only 1m a year in real dollars for a potential power play specialist seems like a bargain to me, especially in 2020 when the minimum salary is likely to be around 1m anyway. Kovy will likely be a much better option then the 4th liners.

If he plays until (and including) 2020, the difference would have been a cap hit of 6.65m for 4 years vs a reality of 4.16m for 4 years.

if he plays until (and including) 2021, the difference would have been a cap hit of 8.86m for 3 years vs a reality of 3.32m for 3 years.

 

edit: Kovy will be 37 for the 2020 season, not 38. Basically how old Elias is now, who wouldn't want Patty at 1m for the next season or two??

Edited by squishyx

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Does anyone know if any of this matters to the cap #s if he jumped to the KHL? I think he'll do it when the real money gets low and he could get a higher salary over there.

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Does anyone know if any of this matters to the cap #s if he jumped to the KHL? I think he'll do it when the real money gets low and he could get a higher salary over there.

 

This is the clear endgame for Kovalchuk and the Devils.  And yeah, the Devils would get dinged if he left for the KHL, whether it was under his NHL contract or if he retired.

 

squishy:  Patty wouldn't want Patty for $1M when he can retire in the NHL and get 10 times as much playing in another league.  There's absolutely nothing stopping Kovalchuk from retiring in the NHL.

Edited by Triumph

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This is the clear endgame for Kovalchuk and the Devils.  And yeah, the Devils would get dinged if he left for the KHL, whether it was under his NHL contract or if he retired.

 

squishy:  Patty wouldn't want Patty for $1M when he can retire in the NHL and get 10 times as much playing in another league.  There's absolutely nothing stopping Kovalchuk from retiring in the NHL.

There are plenty of events that can can stop Kovalchuck from leaving in 7 years.The KHL might lose it's luster and appeal; teams might not have the cash on hand to lure more high profile players; they might have signed "enough" marquee players to grab headlines they were looking for; the NHL and KHL might come to an agreement that bars the practice of leaving one contract early for another. On the personal side, Kovy has 3 young kids and they all live in NJ, maybe he doesn't want to move a bunch of pre-teen kids to Russia.

Or maybe he does, or maybe he defects just for the money. Either way, rather then guess what could happen in 7 years, maybe we should just stick with the facts in front of us. The now-correct formula on cap geek is at worst "slightly better for us" and at best "very good for us" as DM84 pointed out.

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There are plenty of events that can can stop Kovalchuck from leaving in 7 years.The KHL might lose it's luster and appeal

 

Sure.  Bet on it.

 

 

teams might not have the cash on hand to lure more high profile players

 

Sure.  Bet on it.

 

 

they might have signed "enough" marquee players to grab headlines they were looking for

 

This one's the funniest one.  Yeah, the most popular player in Russia, nah, don't want that guy.

 

 

the NHL and KHL might come to an agreement that bars the practice of leaving one contract early for another

 

Absurd.  Bet on it.

 

 

On the personal side, Kovy has 3 young kids and they all live in NJ, maybe he doesn't want to move a bunch of pre-teen kids to Russia.

 

They do?  I'm not even sure his house is done yet.  Either way, they split time in the various countries and Ilya's spent a long time away from them before.

 

 

Or maybe he does, or maybe he defects just for the money. Either way, rather then guess what could happen in 7 years, maybe we should just stick with the facts in front of us. The now-correct formula on cap geek is at worst "slightly better for us" and at best "very good for us" as DM84 pointed out.

 

Yes, it is slightly better - not that again I think it ultimately will matter, given where the cap's going.  But to think Kovalchuk's gonna play here for $1M - it's highly, highly unlikely.  The contract is structured such that he won't want to.

Edited by Triumph

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Sure.  Bet on it.

 

 

 

Sure.  Bet on it.

 

 

 

This one's the funniest one.  Yeah, the most popular player in Russia, nah, don't want that guy.

 

 

 

Absurd.  Bet on it.

 

 

 

They do?  I'm not even sure his house is done yet.  Either way, they split time in the various countries and Ilya's spent a long time away from them before.

 

 

 

Yes, it is slightly better - not that again I think it ultimately will matter, given where the cap's going.  But to think Kovalchuk's gonna play here for $1M - it's highly, highly unlikely.  The contract is structured such that he won't want to.

 

A few things.  Kovalchuk would be getting $7 million over the last two years of his deal.  That's nothing to sneeze at.  For all the talk of KHL teams throwing huge money at NHL stars, they haven't really broken the bank for aging stars who had a place in the NHL.  Jagr only got $5 million a year, and promptly came back to the NHL for less money than that. 

 

Also, for a guy that is a physical specimen without much of an injury history, it's about 50/50 that he could be physically good enough to be a useful NHL player through the life of the deal. 

 

It's really all just guess work, but all in good fun, I suppose.

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Sure.  Bet on it.

 

 

 

Sure.  Bet on it.

 

 

 

This one's the funniest one.  Yeah, the most popular player in Russia, nah, don't want that guy.

 

 

 

Absurd.  Bet on it.

 

 

 

They do?  I'm not even sure his house is done yet.  Either way, they split time in the various countries and Ilya's spent a long time away from them before.

 

 

 

Yes, it is slightly better - not that again I think it ultimately will matter, given where the cap's going.  But to think Kovalchuk's gonna play here for $1M - it's highly, highly unlikely.  The contract is structured such that he won't want to.

At no point did I say it was likely that he would stay those 5 years, so no, I am not likely to bet on something like that (as if it proves anything). But I can see some reasons for why he might stay, why others have stayed, and why we would want him to stay. But sure, keep rambling on as if you know everything....

 

Again, I only have appeal to authority here, or I could email the NHL and ask (they answer these sorts of questions).  But capgeek probably already did that.  

Sure. Bet on it.

:rolleyes:

 

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Assuming the NHL and KHL still have an agreement in place on player movement over the next 7-12+ years, Kovy can't just walk away from his NHL contract and join a KHL team at any point during that term unless (a) his contract has a player "opt-out clause" (I can't remember whether it does or does not at this point), or (b) the Devils release him from the contract and/or transfer his rights to the KHL team.  While it seems logical that he will not play for $1 million 7 years from now, he might not have any choice short of retiring and collecting nothing.  Who knows where he will be as a player, or the Devils will be as an organization at that point.  They might be happy to transfer him to SKA so they pickup all of his salary and we just eat the cap hit.  However, Kovy might need the money because he's paying $50 million in alimony payments by that time.  Or he might be satisfied with what he already made and take his miniature giraffe back to St. Petersburg.  Regardless, under all of these scenarios, it seems pretty clear the team will be paying a cap penalty of approx. $4 million + per season should he retire 7-8 years from now. 

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A few things.  Kovalchuk would be getting $7 million over the last two years of his deal.  That's nothing to sneeze at.  For all the talk of KHL teams throwing huge money at NHL stars, they haven't really broken the bank for aging stars who had a place in the NHL.  Jagr only got $5 million a year, and promptly came back to the NHL for less money than that.

 

KHL money is tax free and that is a lot to sneeze at if you're Ilya Kovalchuk at age 37 going back to Russia.  Jagr is not Russian, either.  These are oligarchs' playtoys, they want to win, but they want to show off the best, too. 

 

 

Also, for a guy that is a physical specimen without much of an injury history, it's about 50/50 that he could be physically good enough to be a useful NHL player through the life of the deal.

 

No way that it's 50/50.  First of all, this Kovalchuk doesn't have an injury history idea is about to go away soon - he's had two significant injuries in the last two years.  One more, and now we're on the other side of that notion.  Second of all, very few players have made it to that age, and Kovalchuk's being useful seems rather unlikely - hell, he might not be all that useful in 2 years, much less 12.

 

 

Sure. Bet on it.


:rolleyes:

 

I would have - and would've won, since it said right in his FAQ that he emailed the league about it.

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KHL money is tax free and that is a lot to sneeze at if you're Ilya Kovalchuk at age 37 going back to Russia.  Jagr is not Russian, either.  These are oligarchs' playtoys, they want to win, but they want to show off the best, too. 

 

 

 

 

No way that it's 50/50.  First of all, this Kovalchuk doesn't have an injury history idea is about to go away soon - he's had two significant injuries in the last two years.  One more, and now we're on the other side of that notion.  Second of all, very few players have made it to that age, and Kovalchuk's being useful seems rather unlikely - hell, he might not be all that useful in 2 years, much less 12.

 

Everyone talks about KHL teams being oligarch playtoys, but all their bluster about paying big money for Russian stars to play in the KHL has been just that.  To date, the most noteworthy players that I can think of that have taken this route are Radulov, who is a headcase anyway that the KHL didn't need to break the bank for, and Alexi Yashin, a player that no NHL team wants.  The biggest name they've gotten is Jagr, who has since gone back to the NHL. 

 

And yes, Kovalchuk has been injured, but, from everything that's publicly available, these are not the debilitating injuries like Mario Lemieux's back or Eric Lindros' brains being scrambled.  We don't know the details of his back injury during the playoffs last year, but it did not seem to be an issue this year.  His shoulder injury this year, from all accounts, was not serious. 

 

And while not many players make it to 40, Kovalchuk is not like most players.  Also, as training, fitness and medicine becomes more sophisticated, and as the league makes the game safer for players (no head shots, mandatory visors, stricter enforcement of rules against hitting from behind), you'll probably end up seeing more and more players lasting a lot longer.  There's a good chance Eric Lindros would still be playing had he started his career when these rules were in place.

 

Yes, all of this is uncertain.  I just think the uncertainty works both ways.

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Everyone talks about KHL teams being oligarch playtoys, but all their bluster about paying big money for Russian stars to play in the KHL has been just that.  To date, the most noteworthy players that I can think of that have taken this route are Radulov, who is a headcase anyway that the KHL didn't need to break the bank for, and Alexi Yashin, a player that no NHL team wants.  The biggest name they've gotten is Jagr, who has since gone back to the NHL.

 

Radulov makes 9.2M per season tax-free, which is probably more than anyone earns playing hockey in the world.  The fact that no NHL team would want Alexei Yashin, supposedly, is an indictment of the NHL and not Yashin.

 

Slava Kozlov ended his career in Russia.  Sergei Fedorov.  Sergei Brylin.  Sergei Zubov.  Alexei Zhitnik.  Maxim Afinogenov is there now.  Nikolai Zherdev is there now.  Alex Frolov is there now.  Denis Grebeshkov is there now.  Danny Markov left the NHL at age 31 and is still playing in Russia.  Viktor Kozlov left at age 33 - still there.  Were all of these guys NHL-worthy when they left?  Not necessarily, but some of them are solid players who could still be drawing an NHL paycheck but aren't. 

 

The point is - look at the structure of the contract.  Is it structured such that Kovalchuk wants to keep playing for the New Jersey Devils?  No, it isn't.  Sidney Crosby's deal has 3 years on the end that are worth $3M - not an amount worthy of his talents, even in 10-12 years, but at least plausible amounts that a player of his skill could play for.

 

And yes, Kovalchuk has been injured, but, from everything that's publicly available, these are not the debilitating injuries like Mario Lemieux's back or Eric Lindros' brains being scrambled.  We don't know the details of his back injury during the playoffs last year, but it did not seem to be an issue this year.  His shoulder injury this year, from all accounts, was not serious.

 

Injuries pile up.  The shoulder's not a long-term concern, but a back injury should be - things like backs, hips, knees, and yes, consussions are of concern.

 

 

And while not many players make it to 40, Kovalchuk is not like most players.  Also, as training, fitness and medicine becomes more sophisticated, and as the league makes the game safer for players (no head shots, mandatory visors, stricter enforcement of rules against hitting from behind), you'll probably end up seeing more and more players lasting a lot longer.  There's a good chance Eric Lindros would still be playing had he started his career when these rules were in place.

 

That's quite a stretch.  Guys retire from concussions in baseball.  Hockey is still a very demanding contact sport and players will be forced into retirement because of concussions every year.  Anyway, Kovalchuk hardly takes a physical pounding, so I don't really worry about him suffering head injuries.  And again - Kovalchuk's career being longer is a point in my favor, not yours.  

Edited by Triumph

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I think a much more interesting topic would be "Kovalchuk and CUP recapture" . . . 

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I think a much more interesting topic would be "Kovalchuk and CUP recapture" . . . 

 Love it. :rofl:

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