Wednesday, February 21, 2007

More on Lou's loophole

"...that's where the league has to come in, and will come in, and is going to make sure that there's integrity to the process."
— Buffalo Sabres GM Darcy Regier
Matt at Sabre Rattling has more on this Richard Matvichuk business at Sabre Rattling, a good take on something that has started to really stick in the craw of a few NHL teams.

Sabres fans, in particular, are feeling the squeeze due to the fact injured centre Tim Connolly's salary is still in a gray area created by the league's new long-term injury exemption rules.

Can Buffalo, in fact, leave Connolly benched until the playoffs (as it appears Loophole Lou Lamoriello is doing with Matvichuk) and not suffer the wrath of the cap police? And if that's the case, what's to stop other teams such as the Toronto Maple Leafs (with Mike Peca) and Montreal Canadiens (with Cristobal Huet) from adding players at the deadline and bringing back their recuperated troops for the postseason?

These are all teams right up against the cap, and depending on what the answer is to their LTI queries, they may or may not be able to acquire salary on deadline day.

It's a good thing the league has waited until five days before it happens to make a decision. That is, if they decide to make one.

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At 7:41 p.m., February 21, 2007, Blogger Tom L said...


From all of Regier's comments to the Buffalo media it seems that if there was an abuse of LTIR like we're all suggesting then either the player currently on LTIR or the one(s) playing under his cap space or acquired for him now would be declared ineligible during the playoffs.

Darth Regier being who he is, is unwilling to take the risk of having something like that happen, so he has chosen, at least publicly, to not make any deals that might incur this penalty.

Ergo, we're in a tough spot right now as over $12 million dollars worth of salary is sitting injured and over half of that has a more legitimate case for replacement under the LTIR provisions, i.e. Max and Ales Kotalik, and nothing can/will be done to replace them. While in NJ Lou is openly daring the NHL to investigate his activities.

And people outside of Buffalo wonder why the natives think they're cursed.


At 11:39 p.m., February 21, 2007, Blogger PPP said...

Well, all that, wide right, and a skate in a crease. Plus they live in Buffalo.

At 9:55 p.m., February 22, 2007, Blogger Art Vandelay said...

PPP, you forgot to mention firing it over the boards in the third period of Game 7 v CAR.


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