Oct 15, 2018
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On face value alone, this is an overpayment for AAV. But we all know how important center depth is, and the alternative to him leaving is just a nightmare for the Caps. But there are a few reasons why I think this makes sense.
1. Backstrom has been criminally underpaid for years. Now I know that isn't a reason to go out and overpay someone, but Backstrom and the organization have had a great relationship, so I don't mind it.
2. Given that Holtby's gone next season, we'll have the cap space to still improve our roster next season. I'd be more worried about making sure there's money for the contracts for Ovechkin, Vrana and Samsonov.
3. I think because this number starts with a 9, it's throwing a lot of people off. If he was supposed to get, let's say $8.5M, are we really complaining about a $700K overpayment? It's the same deal with the Kevin Hayes contract.
4. Look at recent center contracts for #1 centers. Seguin signed at a bargain under 10. Matt Duchene was signed to be a 1C at $8M per. Is Backstrom not right between those two? Given his point production and excellent two way play, this is worth while.
5. This team is trying to win. It's easier to work around the edges than leave a gaping hole down the middle while losing one of the franchise cornerstones over $700K.
<div class="quote"><div class="quote_t">Quoting: <b>Kylonetic8</b></div><div>I'm perfectly fine with them trading Bura, we have Vrana, who has all of the upside Bura has and more, since he's a better 2 way player and much more creative on 5v5. Vrana has more 5v5 points, and all of his goals are 5v5.
We couldn't afford both, and we chose the correct one.</div></div>
The team did fine. it got better over the summer, by fixing areas of need, like defense, grit, and penalty killing. The picks they got could help them stay decent, post-expansion. The cap hit they got Hathaway at is pretty good. Panik's starting to show up. Hagelin is better than I expected.
I think overall we all agreed there wasn't cap space to keep Burakovksy and Connolly, and still upgrade all the intangibles that needed to be addressed. As for the weeks we all spent fretting over which 2nd line pure goal scorer was the better fit on a checking line? I had fun. I hope you guys did, too.