It’s swell and all that the Rangers signed Brandon Dubinsky yesterday, but their attention now shifts to signing Ryan Callahan and a sixth defenceman with just $5.78 million in cap space remaining. Our attention shifted to Callahan and Glen Sather’s cap crunch almost immediately after the Dubinsky signing, and naturally that’s where Steve Bartlett–Callahan’s agent–was focused as well.
Speaking with Kevin Allen and Mike Brehm of USA Today, Bartlett said he hasn’t talked with the Rangers over the last few days, but that’s standard procedure given the timing of Dubinsky’s scheduled arbitration hearing yesterday. Callahan’s hearing is slotted for July 28, meaning he’s due up next at the plate to take his hacks at Sather’s money pinata, and Bartlett thinks discussions will intensify.
Using the simple logic of the players’ very similar stats this past season, Bartlett expects Callahan’s deal to be influenced by the number and term given to Dubinsky.
From Allen and Brehm:
Dubinsky, 25, led the Rangers with 24 goals and 30 assists, both of which were career highs. He also had 100 penalty minutes. Callahan, 26, had 23 goals and 48 points but played 17 fewer games because of injuries [he was also 15th in hits with 225].
“Any signing of a player of similar age and accomplishments affects players who share restricted free agency,” Bartlett said. “Much like the real estate market, one looks at comparables. We know we’re looking at houses on the same block, now we need to find out what’s inside.”
Clarke MacArthur thinks arbitration sucks
The recently re-signed Leafs winger has been through the painful process that Callahan may be forced to endure next week, and he’s done it twice.
His most recent spin on the arbitration merry-go-round was last summer’s debacle in Atlanta that led to Brian Burke’s steal when MacArthur signed a one-year deal in Toronto for $1.1 million. He told the Toronto Sun that he isn’t a big fan of having his talents and character degraded by the team that employed him the previous season.
“Going to arbitration, it’s just a bad deal all together. Teams have to downplay you. I know you have to have that in the system, but it’s just something you don’t want to have to go through.”
Doc Emrick explains his decision
Mike “Doc” Emrick was the voice of the Devils for 21 years, and was forced to make a decision with all three of his broadcasting contracts (MSG, NBC, Versus) expiring this year. His passion for the game certainly hasn’t wavered, but his body can’t quite endure the nomadic life of an NHL broadcaster like it could a decade ago.
That’s why Emrick made the difficult decision to end his time with the Devils and MSG yesterday. He’ll now be calling games exclusively for NBC and Versus, and he expanded on his thinking while speaking with Tom Gulitti of the Bergen Record.
“It’s not that I’m feeble or falling over. But at this point with all three contracts (with NBC, Versus and MSG Network) expiring, you had to look into the future…I’m not 45. I’m 65. I wish I was 45 so that I could continue to see all these games, but it’s become a job and a half.”
Trevor Gretzky has signed with the Chicago Cubs. [Fox Sports]
Whenever a loved one is arrested it’s clearly a difficult time for the family. But the arrest of Aaron BooGaard is especially depressing. [Minneapolis Star-Tribune]
The Sabres re-signed Jhonas Enroth, their restricted free agent backup goalie. [Sabre Noise]
Trying to find contract comparables is always a dangerous game. But Teddy Purcell’s two-year, $2.36 million deal with Tampa Bay could be pretty close to the deal Bruins RFA Brad Marchand will receive. [The Bruins Blog]
Over the next few weeks Blues chairman Dave Checketts plans to narrow down potential buyers for the team. [St. Louis Post Dispatch]
ABC Sports does not approve of this message
Any presidential candidate using hockey during one of his campaign messages shows that Americans are still aware hockey exists, and that makes us smile. But there’s just one minor detail that Republican candidate Tim Pawlenty may have missed when he used the legendary Miracle on Ice footage to revive his struggling campaign with a series of ads dubbed the “Great American Comeback.”
He didn’t get the rights to Al Michaels’ sacred call.
The overseers of overly-dramatic public advertising may be smiling on Pawlenty though. An ABC Sports representative told the Des Moines Register that Pawlenty’s use of the footage–and especially Michaels’ voice–is in violation of the company’s copyright policies, and has prompted an inquiry that could lead to a cease-and-desist letter. However, an ESPN spokesman–the sports mothership that owns ABC Sports–said Pawlenty hasn’t been asked to remove any footage from his ad.