Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Zubrus Likely To Hit The Free Agent Market

It looks as though Dainius Zubrus won't be back in Buffalo next year and instead will test the free agent waters come Sunday.

The Sabres, of course, are presumably trying to figure out a way to keep one (or both) of their unrestricted free agent captains, Chris Drury and Daniel Briere, and restricted free agent revelation Thomas Vanek, so you'll forgive them for not focusing their attention on resigning a winger-turned-center-turned-winger who scored a mere four goals in 34 games for Buffalo after being sent north from D.C. at the trade deadline.

To save you the keystrokes, yes, Zubie (at the right price and contract length) could be a good fit on the right wing of one of the Caps' top two lines next year. But if he was willing to come down to reasonable terms for the Caps, you'd think he almost certainly would for the Sabres as well, and that he'd already have signed there.

Then again, both Dainius and the Caps have gotten a bit of a reality check since the two parties last negotiated (the Caps by seeing the Scott Hartnell contract, for example, and Zubie by seeing what life is like without having the best left wing on the planet on his line), so who knows?

The bottom line, it would seem, is that barring a "hometown discount," someone out there will pay Zubie too much for too long. Let's hope it's not the Caps.

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

You gotta pay someone eventually. Zubie deserves some bling, with that physical brand of hockey and all. Not too many guys like him around.

I says: bite the bullet and bring him back.

I enjoy his brawniness.

Anonymous said...

worried about his knee anyone?

JP said...

Good point - caveat emptor.

dmaruk said...

The Caps already offered to overpay him once, they shouldn't do it again.

The guy never scored 20 goals or more than 43 points without AO on his left. He isn't that good.

Joe said...

I gotta think the Caps can get a better C or RW in free agency. Besides they only have about $32 Million committed for next year. They've got to have at least 8-10 million to throw around.

Tyler said...

I don't think that's right. I don't know the exact number, but with QOs and such it's not much north of $20 million. Anyone have the actual #?

JP said...

Got a calculator? Go here or and report back.

I need an intern...

Tyler said...

Yeah, that's the site I was using but it doesn't list what the QOs are and ya gotta figure about that figure in too for the relevant players.

JP said...

Right, but add in a 10% raise for the RFAs that were qualified and you're in the ballpark.

Tyler said...

But that's depressing because it reminds me that Jake 'two minutes for hooking' Klepis was qualified at $800K. Groan.

Anonymous said...

hopefully they kept him around to trade

Joe said...

http://www.geocities.com/rmccleary97/index.htm
This site has good cap info also.

Debcapsfan said...

I'm really hoping they can do better than Zubie at center. Even if the Caps upgrade at center and wing and have to have a young guy at the wing that would be fine with me. Eric Fehr (if he's finally healthy) should get a good shot.

Anonymous said...

if they sign zubie it wont be to play center, hopefully

Anonymous said...

is there any speculation as to who the caps almost traded for, just before they traded the 28th pick to sj?

JP said...

Great question. I've wondered that myself, but haven't seen anything beyond "an NHL player."

Tyler said...

Which means not a lot. Jake Klepis is an NHL player.

Actually, I take that back. He's a human two-minute minor.

Anonymous said...

hes a concussion waiting to happen

On ice said...

I wrote it on Tarik's site the day after the Sabres were eliminated - his knee is shot. Sorry, folks, too risky.

NS said...

V. Kozlov or Zubrus...who would you prefer?

JP said...

Assuming that you mean Viktor (not Vyacheslav) and that the two were for identical prices/terms, Zubrus. Easily (but would I have to play him at center?).

But they wouldn't be for the same terms, so it's tough to say without seeing dollars and years.

Viktor Kozlov is slow and injury-prone... but better than all of the current centers (save, perhaps, Backstrom).

For more on the Kozlov rumor, check out OWO.

JP said...

The Panthers have re-signed Jozef Stumpel to a 2-year/$4.5m deal.

Great value for them, imo.