The issue on Thomas, I would theorize, is that his contract comes with a lot of permutations. A long-term contract and a short-term contract would look very different for him, especially if you start buying out UFA years. So it's a lot easier to deal with a Sanford or a Kyrou where you're not thinking about those things, since you're not going really long term. There is a case for a longer term deal for Thomas; there is also a case, and maybe a better one, for taking a more measured approach to his contract.
He is not arbitration eligible, so he doesn't have any real leverage. It may not be the way you want to treat a guy who could be a top six forward for you for years to come. Though he is still yet to prove that, which is likely where the hang up comes.
For years now, more prominent ads on jerseys have been as inevitable as tomorrow, only not quite as imminent. And they will come to the NFL and MLB. If European soccer clubs that rake in the money do it, American sports can too. Though European soccer clubs also spend money like there's no tomorrow.
I don't think the two are connected. I have said all along that a Tarasenko trade would not be easy, and Thomas' contract would be complicated for the reasons listed below. But once a Thomas deal is done, that may simplify a Tarasenko trade because the Blues would then know how much salary they could keep to make a trade and get under the cap.
At this point, I don't think a Thomas trade is likely.
Not really. That would be really complicated to pull off, especially since Buffalo is going to want actual players back. He makes sense for a lot of other teams before the Blues.
Players want to go to the Olympics because it is another mountain to climb, a pinnacle in the sport. And, if you play on a bad team, it's a chance to win something. The league has been reluctant for a number of reasons, including having to have a three-week gap midseason and the risk of a player getting hurt while not playing for your team. So insurance is a big deal, but even that goes only so far. The money would be nice but if you have a team that's a contender and you lose your star player, that is not good. And lastly, the IOC is massively stingy with image rights. NHL teams can't use pictures or videos of players in the Olympics because the IOC won't let them. American players are every bit as patriotic as Canadians, but being chosen for the Canadian national team is a really big honor because the competition is so great. Canada could probably field a gold and silver medal winning team.
At this point, the jury is still very much out as to whether Tarasenko is still a 30-goal scorer. I don't think he is. I would look at him as a 20-goal scorer, maybe 25. Which is pretty good, but maybe not $7.5 million good. At this point, I could see the Blues retaining $4 or $5 million of salary to get the deal done and get the cap space. But, as I've said before, at that point, you have to weigh whether the potential distraction of having Tarasenko around is worse than the scoring potential. If you're going to be spending $4 or $5 million for him to play for someone else, there could be a plus to having him around.
Yes, but if you look at the numbers on Capfriendly, while they would send down Santini, those numbers don't include Kostin, who will make $863,000. Right now, the Blues have only 12 forwards under contract. So unless they're going to go through the season with only 13 forwards, which they have done at times in the past, there's going to be another forward on the roster.
To be precise, the Blues would be on the hook for $7.5 million minus the league minimum plus something like $300,000. So there would be about $1 million of cap relief. That's why most of the guys in the AHL don't count against the cap, because they make less than $1 million. For instance, if the Blues sent MacEachern, who makes $900,000, down, he wouldn't count against the cap because his salary is so low.
Fun fact: Every NHL contract that Perron has signed has been with the Blues. Edmonton, Anaheim, Pittsburgh, Vegas, were all under his various Blues contracts. So that alone should say that it's very likely he re-signs with the Blues when his contract runs out. He's getting older -- as noted earlier, as we all are -- so he's going to hit a wall at some point, and it could come at any moment. If this season is consistent with his previous few, I could see a two-year deal for a little less than he's making now, which is $4 million. But also, maybe all the time he lost to concussions he's getting back at the other end. So maybe he's 33 going on 31. Doug Armstrong clearly likes having him around, and Perron seems to enjoy St. Louis, or otherwise he wouldn't keep re-signing here.
There is less motivation to make a trade right now because the conditions today are pretty much the same today as they were two days ago. So if, pick an imaginary team, the Rangers for instance, didn't want to make the trade yesterday, there's no reason for them to change their offer, or for the Blues to change their offer, until something happens. And yes, this is vacation season in the NHL, but these guys do have cellphone service at their cabins -- at least I think they do -- and some other business, like negotiations with players who have filed for arbitration, going on, but there's little to stir the pot right now
I wrote about Lindenwood hockey last year, and how they've been waiting for this a long time. It would be great for them, but I don't see it moving the needle much elsewhere locally at the college level. Hockey is an expensive sport, so I don't think any other colleges would add a team, especially when those other teams had to start renting ice for practices and games. It could help at the amateur level if more local kids had a DI program to look to. The more hockey the better, though. And I think it's easier for people to rally around a college team than it is to rally around a junior team.
Always possible, but I think he's going to want to stay close to home in the northeast. Krug noted last season that the travel in the Western Conference is a whole lot harder than it was in the East. Teams like the Blues are away from home a lot more nights than teams in the East. At 44, going on 45, that's probably not high on Chara's list.
They'd like him to get in position to help. He played zero games last season at any level. So much of the early going will be him getting back up to speed, and then getting ready for even more speed in the NHL. He could be in line for some callups at various points in the season if someone gets hurt to get a feel for things, but if he's playing significant, he's either a very fast learner or the Blues have had a lot of injuries.
I don't know exact numbers, but there's enough that the Blues Alumni have their own dressing room at Centene. Over the last 15 or 20 years, the Blues are probably higher than the Cardinals.