1. Kimmo Timonen - Philadelphia: 07-08 - $8 mill. (Cap Hit $6.333 mill.)
This outrageous signing by Philadelphia was the shocker of the summer to this modest scribe. 6 years at an average of $6 million for a player who has never been past the first round of the playoffs and has one goal in 16 playoff games (as well as a minus 4 rating) is simply too much to pay. Granted, Timonen is highly thought of around the league but he is not even in the top ten as far as defenseman go. Yet he is now the highest paid D-man in the league. Ahead of Nicklas Lidstrom. Ahead of Scott Niedermayer. Astounding.
2. Robert Lang – Chicago: 07-08 - $4 mill. (Cap Hit $4 mill.)
A lumbering playmaker, Lang is already 36 and is not getting any faster. This is a poor replacement for losing Michael Handzus to L.A.
3. Bryan McCabe - Toronto: 07-08 - $7.150 mill. (Cap Hit $5.75 mill.)
Unbelievably, Toronto still has to ante up for another four seasons for the mistake prone McCabe. Sure he's got a cannon from the point but how many goals does he cost you? Plenty. Because of contracts like this, Toronto is stuck in neutral.
4. Roman Hamrlik - Montreal: 07-08 - $5.500 mill. (Cap Hit $5.5 mill.)
Montreal is quickly becoming the Edmonton of the east. They have to overpay athletes to play in their zoo. Hamrlik has one goal in 55 playoff games. GM Bob Gainey has turned into the biggest disappointment in the NHL. They are treading water by signing Hamrlik and Bryan Smolinski.
5. Daniel Briere - Philadelphia: 07-08 - $10 mill. (Cap Hit $6.5 mill.)
That's just too much money. Way too much. He is not a top five player in the league.
6. Scott Gomez – New York Rangers: 07-08 - $10 mill. (Cap Hit $7.357 mill.)
Same thing here.
7. Craig Rivet – San Jose Sharks: 07-08 - $3.5 mill. (Cap Hit $3.5 mill.)
Sure he's a leader but you don't pay $3.5 million for intangibles. Prudent sense dictates that Doug Wilson could have signed Rivet for $2 million a season.
8. Jose Theodore – Colorado Avalanche: 07-08 - $6 mill. (Cap Hit $5.333 mill.)
It's hard to fault the Avalanche. Theodore was once an MVP but sadly has fallen on hard times. Luckily they only have one more year to bear on this dud.
9. Markus Naslund – Vancouver Canucks: 07-08 - $6 mill. (Cap Hit $6 mill.)
Naslund looks disinterested lately. Probably because Vancouver has the dullest system in the league. He is just biding his time until he can either go back to Europe, retire, or sign with a team who still believes in scoring goals.
10. Ruslan Fedotenko – New York Islanders: 07-08 - $2.9 mill. (Cap Hit $2.9 mill.)
Fedotenko has scored over twenty goals just once in his career. Last season he had 12. So Garth Snow gives him $3 million. Makes perfect sense.