Sunday, October 01, 2006

Devils swap dead weight for Korolyuk

I'm a little tied up with what Chris Young fondly calls the petroleum-based product at the moment, but I can't pass up a chance to offer, however brief, some comments on the New Jersey Devils/San Jose Sharks deal tonight.

Now, we've seen all kinds of silliness under this new CBA, including a player retiring to become a GM and then still having to deal with his own salary under the cap, but what we haven't seen was a trade involving two players who have no intention of playing this season. Vladimir Malakhov has said his knees have reached the point of no return, and Alex Korolyuk is just as pleased as punch to be in Russia.

One's retired, the other's in Siberia.

So, discounting the players in the deal who could, essentially, just represent their allotments under the cap (with Malakhov being 'a lot' and Korolyuk being 'zilch'), what are we left with? A conditional first-round pick goes to the Sharks in exchange for Jim Fahey, a quality AHL defenceman if I ever saw one.

After months of pundits musing on what, exactly, wily old Lou Lamoriello was going to do, we finally have our answer: find the loophole. It was a costly loophole, but a loophole nonetheless.

And now it's only a matter of time before we see teams swap deceased players. (You can imagine how much Gary Bettman wants to see a Zholtok for Snyder type deal hit the headlines.)

As for what Lamoriello does with Alex Mogilny, I hear Garth Snow is taking offers on a former backup netminder.

6 Comments:

At 11:05 PM, October 01, 2006, Anonymous phillie said...

I wouldn't call it a Petroleum-based product as much as a cellulose-based product. Or just call it the Dead-Tree Medium.

 
At 11:26 PM, October 01, 2006, Blogger Jason said...

This is no different really than how the NBA operates. Teams looking to clear cap space will trade some sort of value (normally draft picks) along with a player (or players) who help to clear space. I'm actually a bit surprised that this is the first time it happened.

As for deceased players being traded, I don't see it ever happening. I would imagine that they would qualify for the long-term injury exemption that Lamoriello was considering putting Mogilny under at the beginning of camp. So there's no value to trading them.

 
At 11:29 PM, October 01, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oddly it's the same formula as the Johnson trade.

Salary Dump + 1st rounder or 1st round prospect(note:this pick is in the future or won't sign a contract) = two players. The nature of the the trade is determined by the value of the players involved. So the same formula could be used to accomplish different goals.

 
At 12:19 AM, October 02, 2006, Blogger James Mirtle said...

As for deceased players being traded, I don't see it ever happening. I would imagine that they would qualify for the long-term injury exemption that Lamoriello was considering putting Mogilny under at the beginning of camp. So there's no value to trading them.

Of course I'm being a little facetious here, but really, Malakhov is injured and says he can't play for that reason. The different between he and Mogilny? Malakhov retired midway through last season. Had he passed away after that point, his salary would, indeed, still count against the cap.

 
At 9:18 AM, October 02, 2006, Anonymous Lyle Richardson said...

Sure, it's a loophole, but I don't think it's one that's going to be exploited a lot because of the circumstances. And given the Devils ability to draft well over the past fifteen years, I don't think Lamoriello's losing too much sleep over giving up a first round pick.

Korolyuk declined a $1.2 million award in 2005 when the Sharks took him to arbitration and decided to play in Russia. Malakhov is still suspended by the Devils and claims to be retired but didn't file his retirement with the league.

Had Korolyuk been an unrestricted free agent and Malakhov officially retired, none of this would've happened. It's a unique situation that isn't likely to occur that often in the future.

Essentially two teams swapped their problem children. One got a first round pick in either 2007 or 08, the other gets their much needed cap relief.

Still, I suspect it's a loophole that will be closed off when it's time to negotiate a new CBA.

 
At 9:47 AM, October 02, 2006, Blogger James Mirtle said...

I don't think anyone's saying this is going to happen all that often.

 

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