Archive for June, 2011

Holy Crap Ericsson

Update (10:04 PM): The best part: Jonny’s cap hit will be higher than Nik Kronwall’s $3 million. Nik’ll make just $500,000 more this year than Ericsson. Fortunately for his self-esteem, he’s due for a big raise next summer. - Matt

Update (9:56 PM): Chuck Pleiness confirms Ericsson and the Wings have reached an agreement. And he confirms the numbers. Awesome. - Matt

This is what a weak defenseman free agency market gets you: Jonathan Ericsson for $9.75 million over 3 years (reportedly). That’s a $3.25 million cap hit for a guy that was a nightmare seemingly 9 out of 10 times he was on the ice. For comparison’s sake, Kevin Bieksa made $3.5 million last year. If by the end of three years, Ericsson is worth the kind of money Vancouver just awarded Bieksa, I’ll eat my hat.

Also not encouraging: the big hangup for Jonny was reportedly over role. I guess playing with Rafalski wasn’t enough for the Box. So be prepared for more Big E, I guess? Maybe with Nick babysitting?

If Norris can make it 8 playing alongside Jonny, I don’t ever want to hear another word about Bobby Orr.

Oh, and meanwhile, Ehrhoff is off the market. Priorities.

Norris Lidstrom

Nick notched his 7th Norris Trophy last night, beating out Shear Weber by just nine points in the vote. After the season Nick had, I’m surprised and not surprised that he won: surprised, with the -2 out the media could have taken, and not surprised because he was stellar all year. I do wonder how the vote might have changed had he finished higher in +/-. No denying he earned it. Weber and Chara are very good, but Nick is still the gold standard.

Goodbye MacDonald, Salei

(Not so) Stunning news on the bottom-tier defense front: Ruslan Salei will not be offered a contract before July 1st. Meanwhile, Joey MacDonald has talked himself out of a contract offer with the Wings by his lack of interest in a two-way deal.

Sorry to see MacDonald go, for sure. He did a solid job backing up Osgood, and would have been helpful in the AHL for Thomas McCollum’s development.

And it’s disappointing the Salei experiment didn’t work out. Though it won’t be much less disappointing if the Wings do end up having to re-sign him because they couldn’t fill out the defense any other way.

Lidstrom Returning

Update (10:59 PM): Pierre LeBrun reports Nick will earn $6.2 million. So no change. - Matt

It took nothing less than the captain deciding to return for another season to break me out of the blogging funk I’ve been in. I wasn’t feeling so positive he would be back, so this is a big relief.

Nick apparently broke the news to Holland yesterday, and has already agreed to a one-year deal. Terms weren’t finalized yesterday, but he should have a similar cap hit to his $6.2 million of last season. That leaves about $11.3 million to fill out the roster.

Sorry about the silence around here lately. I’ll try to pick up the blogging pace now that the lay of the land for the off-season is a bit clearer.