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Negative or Positive Contract Value - You Decide


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#1 bekim

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:27 AM

As the NHL trade deadline inches closer, I thought it might be a fun topic to discuss NJ contracts and whether or not they are negative or positive value in 2013-2014 based on... [insert your preferred metric here].  Obviously, point production, defensive prowess, Corsi #s, etc are on the table... or heck, just toss in your pure, unbridled opinion regardless of statistics. :-)

 

Zajac. 5.75m

NEGATIVE - 40 point defensive centers are not worth nearly 6 million bucks in the 2013 cap.  Not having a 1st line center who can produce is one of this team's biggest problems.

 

Elias 5.5m

POSITIVE - has played less games than others this season, but it has always seemed to me that as Elias goes, so go the Devils.  He's the true heart and soul of the team, and while his production has started to falter a little, he's still a great talent and one of the more creative playmakers on the team.

 

Clowe 4.85m

POSITIVE - this is based on a relatively small sample size, but Clowe has come on since his return from injury and is looking more and more like a player NJ can utilize.  Certainly looks miles better than Clarkie in Toronto.

 

Henrique 4m

NEUTRAL - 4m isn't an awfully large cap hit, but as with Zajac, you run into a player type who is averaging .50 points per game, and you need more than that out of your 2nd line center. 

 

Jagr 4m (2+2 bonus)

POSITIVE - love what Jagr has added just with his personality. oh, and he's leading the team in scoring.

 

Ryder 3.5m

POSITIVE - The guy looks like he's always in some dissociative trance, but hey, whatever works.  He's scoring more goals than most.  Point totals not impressive, but we need the goals, so a decent value at 3.5.

 

Zubrus 3.1m

POSITIVE - i think this guy is all heart and NJ could use more players like him.  3.1 is a fair value for what he brings to the table.

 

Brunner 2.5m

POSITIVE - the guy obviously has a lot of talent, and a lot of potential to be inconsistent.  but his contract his cheap and we need guys who can score.  he's one of them.

 

Carter 775k

NA - love Carter, but this kind of player seems to be a big positive value on a winning team, and seems to have no real value on a losing one.

 

Bernier 775k

NA - see Carter.

 

Loktionov 725k

POSITIVE - ?  Lokti fell off the map, when he was at first projected to challenge for a key spot.  I think his contract is positive because he's young and full of potential, but we need more from him in the last 30 games if NJ is to have any chance of making the playoffs.

 

Josefson 725k

NA

 

Boucher 693k

POSITIVE - I like what I've seen, but like all others, needs to finish, needs to put up points.  Blends in on a team of guys who can't score.

 

Gionta 563k

DEBATABLE - probably gets too many minutes for his talent level, but also works his ass off most nights.

 

Volchenkov 4.25m

NEGATIVE - he's got more points than Carter or Gionta, but as a part of the "old guard," i think the value has to be stated as negative.  he's one of so many devils with mid-range contracts (in the 3-4.5 million range), likely preventing us from signing higher impact players, or allowing youth to fully work its way into the lineup. he's an okay D-man, but his worth has passed him by in our system.

 

Salvador 3.17m

NEGATIVE - see Volchenkov

 

Greene 3m

POSITIVE - Greeney has been great. really hope he's around for a while and can be a part of the next gen corps to tutor the youngster.

 

Zidlicky 4m (3+1 bonus)

POSITIVE - the guy brings offense where many do not, has had a very good year overall.

 

Fayne 1.3m

POSITIVE - very cheap D and would rather see him play over Sal/Volch any day of the week.

 

Merrill 840k

POSITIVE - love what Merrill has shown. if only NJ could ship out some anchors to ensure his full time spot.

 

Gelinas 660k

POSITIVE - great season so far for Gelinas (albeit with some lows).  Truly hoping we can complete the youth brigade movement by getting rid of Sal/Volch.

 

*Larsson 474k (ahl)

POSITIVE - needs to be re-integrated into the lineup and given ample minutes.  he'll be around for a long while, just as soon as NJ can shed some contracts.  good long term player.

 

Brodeur 4.5m

NEGATIVE - for the simple reason that his presence is preventing the necessary transition... don't care what anyone says about wins... I don't think Schneider will be happy as a 1A-1B.  If Brodeur intends to come back next year, it really has to be as a true backup.  Schneider's handled everything fairly well, but I believe he'll be more comfortable once the team is his.

 

Schneider 4m

POSITIVE - good guy, great goalie, HORRENDOUSLY AWFUL in shootouts. NJ needs to swap in Brodeur just for the shootout to at least give us a shot, but obviously positive value contract at 4m and the potential future of our crease.

 

 

OK, chime in, give your own opinions on each, etc.  I didn't really get into any advanced statistics in my own initial writeup here, but feel free, especially if you agree/disagree with any of the values. Cheers!


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#2 thecoffeecake

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:46 AM

Zajac is the best hockey player on this team. He does everything at a high level but score.
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#3 CarterforPresident

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 01:24 AM

With the cap going up, Zajac isn't over paid.
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#4 Marshall

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 01:36 AM

There are two or three bad deals on this team (Volchenkov, Salvador, Marty). 


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#5 Martyisth3b3st

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 01:47 AM

Marty's getting legacy money, the money he has been owed his entire career that he didn't demand which would have lessened the talent around him.
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#6 RizzMB30

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 03:22 AM

Marty's getting legacy money, the money he has been owed his entire career that he didn't demand which would have lessened the talent around him.

Agreed.   Only contracts that need to be gotten rid of are Volchekov and maybe Salvador, and I still don't like Clowe's contract.  Zidlicky can be shipped.


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#7 Colorado Rockies 1976

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 07:05 AM

Marty's getting legacy money, the money he has been owed his entire career that he didn't demand which would have lessened the talent around him.

 

There were a lot of reasons why Marty got this last contract, which as we all know was basically a Lifetime Achievement contract.  From a strictly forensic, all-feelings-stripped away viewpoint, it had the chance to be poor value kind of deal.

 

But the fact is he was coming off a very solid, extended stretch of play to close out 2012, and there was no way in hell that Lou and the Devils were just going to let him walk.  For all he's done for the organization, the actual contract really wasn't that bad...deep down, Lou probably wasn't tickled about the 2nd year, but considering that just about every contract negotiation he had with Marty was damned near painless (except for the one after the '95 Cup win, when Lupien was still Marty's agent), it was a pretty easy call to make (and it's obvious that Marty and Lou have a much deeper relationship than player-GM).  A lot of people understandably wanted to see Marty finish out his career as a New Jersey Devil.  This is the price that comes with it, but considering his best years far outweigh his declining ones, it's a relatively small one. 

 

All this being said, I still maintain the Devils shouldn't get roped into another "Thank you" deal, even if it's only for a year.  The "we want to see him retire a Devil" sentiment can only go so far.  Some fans have already turned on him.  If he signs another deal to stay, there's going to be a lot opposition to it.  If I'm Marty, I wouldn't want to go out that way. 

 

Anyway, part of the problem with a list like this is that the guys not playing well or not appearing to play well are going to get the "NEGATIVE" labels, and vice-versa for the "POSITIVE"s.  It's pretty black and white.  But a lot of these guys are on multi-year deals...in Zajac's case, his contract has a long way to go.  Henrique too.  Hell, Brunner would've been a resounding negative not so long ago.  What if Zajac suddenly gets hot, or has an all-around terrific year in Year 2 or Year 3 of his deal?  What if Brunner goes ice cold again?  What if a guy like Henrique comes out of nowhere and starts scoring in the playoffs (playoff heroes sometimes come from unlikely sources...see Claude Lemieux in '95)?  I think if you're going to do a list like this, you've got to wait until the end of the season, and even then, it's still kind of flawed.     

 

And re:  Schneider...no way he's ever going to get pulled in a shootout.  For one, he's been OK in them throughout his career...not as good as Marty and some others, but OK.  Second, kind of hard to get on the goalies without also getting on the shooters.  Not like either Cory or Marty ever get ANY support in shootouts.


Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976, 21 January 2014 - 07:25 AM.

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#8 dmann422

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 09:10 AM

Good thread and I respect your opinions, my biggest disagreement is zajac. As others have said in many ways he is the best player on the team (obv that's not saying much with our lack of top flight talent).

The fact that the team doesn't have a first line center also can't be held against zajac. He is probably one of the best 2nd line centers in the league, but unfortunately people look at him as our first since we don't have anyone else.

And with the new cba (the cap is expected to rise at record levels in the coming years), 5.75 is good value for a top 2nd line center.
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#9 LucifersDog

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 09:26 AM

I agree with all except Zajac he is worth his contract as an overall player. It can't be based on scoring alone.


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#10 Jerzey Devil

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 09:33 AM

I'm actually going to agree with you about Zajac. I understand he's a role player and with the cap going up he isn't overpaid by much but I still think he's slightly overpaid (by a million or so). I do not agree that he's our best player on the ice. He is great in his own zone though. We should not try to use him in an offensive role though, like centering Jagr.

Vouch is obviously overpaid although he's been pretty good this year (finally).

I don't really think Salvador is overpaid I just don't think we need him and volch.

Marty isn't overpaid IMO as long as this is his last contract. It should be a nice final year contract. He's earned it.

I'm good with the rest of the contracts.
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#11 DevsMan84

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 09:45 AM

Is Greene a free agent this summer or after next season?  Boy is he is going to get a payday.


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#12 SterioDesign

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 09:57 AM

i agree about Zajac. Not saying he sucks or anything and we'd be really fvcked without him but he's simply not a core player.

 

The "he does everything" argument is good but im 100% if we'd be debating about a player on another team (especially a rival team) we wouldnt use that excuse and simply say he sucks.


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#13 dmann422

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 10:20 AM

i agree about Zajac. Not saying he sucks or anything and we'd be really fvcked without him but he's simply not a core player.

The "he does everything" argument is good but im 100% if we'd be debating about a player on another team (especially a rival team) we wouldnt use that excuse and simply say he sucks.

lol this is funny coming from you, because we finally sign someone before they hit free agency (you complain about this in just about every thread) and you think they're overpaid.

If we didn't give zajac that contract he would have gotten it or slightly more from somewhere else and he'd be gone. Then you would have someone else too add to your list of players lost.

Nobody thinks zajac is a top line center, if he was he'd be making north of 7 million a year, but to say he's not a core player is silly, he's one of the best 2nd line centers in the league and is paid as such. He is rightfully a core piece moving forward.
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#14 SterioDesign

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 10:40 AM

lol this is funny coming from you, because we finally sign someone before they hit free agency (you complain about this in just about every thread) and you think they're overpaid.

If we didn't give zajac that contract he would have gotten it or slightly more from somewhere else and he'd be gone. Then you would have someone else too add to your list of players lost.

Nobody thinks zajac is a top line center, if he was he'd be making north of 7 million a year, but to say he's not a core player is silly, he's one of the best 2nd line centers in the league and is paid as such. He is rightfully a core piece moving forward.

 

Funny thing is i dont complain about this anymore or barely its ALWAYS you guys mentioning it and bringing back stuff that i said awhile ago after i post something not even related. To be fair it's ColoradoRockies 85% of the time but still.

 

i still dont think Zajac is a legit core player, he's one by default here but on another team i doubt he would


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#15 2ELIAS6

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 10:49 AM

i agree with just about all of this.. however zajac does everything but put up goals.. i think hes a great player i just wish he would contribute in the goal department a little bit more.. henrique i think has come alive as of the past month and iam liking what he has been bringing.. bernier god i hope he is gone after this contract as well as loktionov theyre both just useless ..carter and gionta as well i wouldnt mind as long as the team is succeeding
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#16 dmann422

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 11:12 AM

Funny thing is i dont complain about this anymore or barely its ALWAYS you guys mentioning it and bringing back stuff that i said awhile ago after i post something not even related. To be fair it's ColoradoRockies 85% of the time but still.
 
i still dont think Zajac is a legit core player, he's one by default here but on another team i doubt he would

I guess we just define "core player" differently- IMO it doesn't need to be a scorer or even a top line player or defensemen. There are plenty of players around the league that are barely second line point producers but bring other things to the team make them core players. Guys like Marchand or Simmons come to mind- I'm sure most flyer or bruin fans would include those guys as part of their "core".

I believe most teams would happily take zajac as one of their "core players".
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#17 Triumph

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 11:50 AM

Zajac would be at least an 18 minute a game player anywhere else.  He kills penalties and drives play at even strength - on a really top team he wouldn't play on the power play, but there aren't very many of those teams.


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#18 Marshall

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 11:51 AM

Maybe it's just me but I see core players as your top 6 forwards/top 4 D and within that core you have your top pairing and your top line as your key players. Zajac is definitely a core player by that definition, but ideally he's your #2 center.

 

Out of curiosity SD...how'd you define Patrice Bergeron?


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#19 EdgeControl

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:04 PM

So Zajac is overpaid and a negative yet clowe is a positive? News flash, Clowes making about 5MIL with 1 ES goal in 18 games. is HORRIBLE in his own end, and one hit away from la la land.   he's getting points now but his career seems to be trending down and he's tied up for years.  its dangerous, imo


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#20 2ELIAS6

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Posted 21 January 2014 - 12:07 PM

although zajac isnt very productive in the goal scoring department.. when he was on a line with parise wasnt he a lot more successful with netting up goals? i think hes just one of those guys that needs to be on a line with another player that has the skill set to really set him up and gel together
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