I know most of you are probably sick to your stomache of the Lebron like drama surrounding the Kovalchuk deal, however I have been thinking hard about the ramifications of these monster deals for the NHL down the road.
Marian Hossa- 30yrs old 12yr 62.8 million cap hit- 5.2 million age at end of contract- 42
Henrik Zetterberg- 29 yrs old 12yr 73 million cap hit- 6 million age at end of contract- 40
Johan Franzen- 30yrs old 11yr 43 million cap hit- 3.95 million age at end of contract- 40
Rick DiPietro- 28 yrs old 15yr 67.5 million cap hit- 4.5 million age at end of contract- 39
Roberto Luongo- 31 yrs old 12yr 64 million cap hit- 5.3 million age at end of contract- 43
Alex Ovechkin- I am not including because he is a generational player and is only 37 at the end of his dealNow given the way the NHL has fought to keep players salaries relatively under control (see A-Rod 27.5 million, Kobe Bryant 21 million Compared to Sidney Crosby 9 million) I personally find it hard to believe that in 10 years the NHLs salary cap will either A) be non-existent, B) be high enough to be able to support 40yr old former stars holding up 5+ million in cap space, especiaally a goalie.
That being said maybe NHL owners and GMs know something I do not about the future financial landscape of the NHL. Either way to me these ridiculous term contract rub me as sweeping the dirt under the rug and leaving a much larger mess to be dealt with when they are no longer with the team. I for one hope these contracts come back to bite these teams in the behind much like the DiPietro deal has with the Islanders.
Personally I am glad the NHL put a stop to this escalating trend by at least attempting to put a hault to the 17yr contract awarded to Kovalchuk, which is basically a slap to the face of every fan that had to miss and entire season of NHL hockey. So the owners could have their salary cap, and a slap to the other 29 owners that put the salary cap in place for a reason.
As a Stars fan I hope that when new ownership comes in place that this franchise does not make the mistake of handing out a massive contract like the above examples just to try and squeak a few million extra into the payroll. I would much rather see more of conservative deals like the ones awarded to Loui, and Robi. There is just way to much risk in terms of player health in such a physical sport, complacency, and long term financial risk in these overzealous contracts.