Found July 19, 2012 on Fox Sports Tennessee:
Its the worst nightmare of any owner or general manager losing two of your best players in a span of weeks without much, if anything, in return. Thats the dilemma the Nashville Predators are confronting with the news that their captain, restricted free agent Shea Weber, has signed an offer sheet from the Philadelphia Flyers reportedly in the amount of 110 million over 14 years. The Predators have the right over the next seven days to match the offer. Coming 15 days after fellow All-Star defenseman Ryan Suter left town to take a 13-year, 98 million deal with Minnesota, the Predators are, to put it simply, between a rock and a hard place. Last season Suter averaged 26:30 per game in time on ice, third best in the NHL, while Weber averaged 26:09, the fifth highest. Together, they were on the ice for roughly half the game. When the two stalwarts were placed on the ice with one of the leagues best goalies in Pekka Rinne, the Predators were one of the NHLs better teams. They finished with the fifth-most points in the NHL and advanced to the second round where they lost in five games to Phoenix after an incident in which two key players missed curfew and ended up being held out for two games. Without Weber and Suter in the lineup for 2012-13, Preds fans could find themselves shielding their eyes from the action on the ice, an event too scary to contemplate. Without two of the best blue liners in the NHL players in their prime the Preds could find themselves leaning heavily on the young and the old, the not-ready-for-prime-time players and the past-their-prime players. The Predators currently list six defensemen on their roster, the same number as a team dresses on a nightly basis. One of them is Jonathon Blum, 23, a former first-round pick who had an excellent end to his rookie season in 2010-11 but was exiled to the minors three months into last season and did not return. Ryan Ellis, 21, is being counted on as a future star, but he has only 32 regular-season and three playoff games under his belt. Twenty-two-year-old Roman Josi would appear the most ready to help fill the void, but his style is more offensive and he would have to improve his defensive game on the fly. Veteran Kevin Klein, 27, is one of the few in his prime but doesn't seem likely to morph into a top-flight defenseman. The 37-year-old Hal Gill, is mainly a penalty-kill specialist. The sixth defenseman on the Preds roster? Its Weber. All of which points to the fact that the strength of the team having what many last season called the best defense pair in the NHL will turn into a group that is ordinary, if that, if they lose Weber. With Weber and a suitable replacement for Suter, possibly through the trade market, the Preds might not lose a step. Without both, again, it might be an eye-averting situation in which all of the progress of seven playoff berths in eight seasons could be at risk. If the Preds elect not to match the offer sheet to Weber, a two-time runner-up for the Norris Trophy (best defenseman), their compensation will be four first-round picks. If the Preds make the right picks as they have a strong record of doing and as they did with Suter (seventh overall in 03), Ellis (11th in 09), among others they can expect those players to start arriving in about 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. If they strike it rich, as they did with Weber and Suter, they can expect those players to be dominating, best-in-the-league types by 2021, 2022, 2023 and 2024. Get the picture? Its a long rebuild. The Predators could reap a much better return for Weber in a trade, but the leagues collective bargaining agreement prevents NBA-style sign-and-trades. The Preds would have to wait at least a year to deal Weber if they choose to match the offer. So the Preds have three choices. They can allow Weber to go, possibly jeopardizing all of the huge gains they have made at the box office, in which they set a franchise record with 26 regular-season sellouts and then five more in the playoffs last season. They can keep Weber for a year having to pay him a reported 27 million in salary and bonuses over that period and then trade him. A bonus of this approach is that with the current CBA expiring, the organization can hope that provisions in a new CBA alleviate some of their burden and make it easier to keep him. Or they can match the offer, shelling out 80 million over the first six seasons, including 68 million in signing bonuses. In a statement the team issued on Thursday, general manager David Poile said the team's intention would be to match, but the Preds will take their time to evaluate the situation. At this point, its a decision that only ownership can make and one that has the chance to define the course of the franchise for the next decade.

Today in the Nation: July 19th, 2012

Links to all Preds Related material for 7/19/12… Predators’ Weber signs 14-year offer sheet with Flyers Shea Weber signed to $100M offer sheet Bombshell: Flyers make offer to Weber; will Nashville match?

Preds issue statement regarding Flyers offer sheet to Weber

Nashville, Tenn. (July 19, 2012) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile issued the following statement this morning:“We are in receipt of the offer sheet signed between the Philadelphia Flyers and Shea Weber. Under the rules pertaining to an offer sheet, the Predators have one week to decide whether to match or accept the compensation...

AP Source: Flyers give Weber 14-year offer sheet

A person with knowledge of the decision says the Philadelphia Flyers have signed Nashville star defenseman Shea Weber to a 14-year offer sheet worth more than $100 million. The Sports Network in Canada first reported the offer. The person spoke to The Associated Press on Thursday on condition of anonymity because the Flyers hadn't announced the offer. Flyers general manager...

Shea Weber offer sheet broken down, KK hockey version

I posted this in the wrong blog, so, for those of you who follow KK hockey: According to TSN, the Philadelphia Flyers’ offer sheet to Nashville Predators defenseman Shea Weber defines the term “front-loaded”: The Philadelphia Flyers have signed defenceman Shea Weber to a 14-year offer sheet worth a total of of $110 million. The deal includes $68 million in bonus money in...

This Sucks: Weber Signs Offer Sheet With Flyers

As you've probably already heard, the Flyers signed noted head-basher Shea Weber to an offer sheet: The Philadelphia Flyers and Nashville Predators star defenseman Shea Weber have agreed to a 14-year offer sheet "upwards of $100 million," giving Nashville GM David Poile a week to match the contract terms. The news was first reported by TSN's Darren Dreger. Now...

Shea Weber agrees to fourteen year offer sheet deal from Flyers

Under the cover of night is about the time one would expect an offer sheet deal to go down. No one likes to discuss offer sheets in the NHL. They're often seen as poaching players, tempting them away from their rightful teams. General managers tend to stay away from them because it "paints them in a bad light," despite the fact that it's a perfectly legal and...

Flyers sign Shea Weber to 14-year Offer Sheet

                Late last night the Philadelphia Flyers forced the hands of the Nashville Predators by signing restricted free agent Shea Weber to a 14-year $100 million offer sheet. The signing means the Predators now have 7 days to match the offer if they hope to keep the services of Weber, who finished with 19 goals and 30 assists last season, his 2nd straight as a first...

Nashville Has To Retain Weber

from Mark Spector of Sportsnet, David Poile will wear a stern and disappointed face into the boardroom of his bosses at Predators Holdings LLC, and then he will tell them what everyone already knows. “Either we compete. Or we die.” “We just lost Ryan Suter, and got nothing back for him,” he’ll remind his owners. “Now, we have a chance to lock up the best defenceman...

What Will Nashville Do?

from Darren Dreger of TSN, By virtue of signing a 14-year, $110 million dollar offer sheet with the Philadelphia Flyers, restricted free agent Shea Weber has made it clear he wants out of Nashville…. Now the Predators are faced with a huge financial gamble. With the threat of a work stoppage looming, Weber will collect a minimum of $26 million in the next 11 months. That’s...

Rangers Were Involved In Shea Weber Talks

We've speculated on the blog that Shea Weber could be a fit for the Rangers, and apparently Glen Sather felt the same way. Per Katie Strang of ESPN New York, the Rangers were very involved in Shea Weber discussions and he had gone so far as to visit New York and talk to management and coaches. However, while Weber was impressed with the organization, he apparently felt that New...

What to do about Weber?

Photo Credit: Like many of you, I received something of a rude awakening, yesterday morning.  Good or bad, checking the previous night’s happenings in the Twitterverse has become a fixture of my morning routine.  Typically, there’s nothing of any real substance to pay attention to–after all, as many a mother is fond of saying, “nothing good happens after 2 AM...

Shea Weber's possible Nashville departure could cap off an off-season of gifts for the Blues

Take heart, Blues fans having a panic attack over whether or not the Blues' UFA/RFA dealings have been sufficient. The Central Division won't be the same next year... call it some fortuitous addition by subtraction for the Blues. Shea Weber signed a 14 year ginormous offer sheet from the Philadelphia Flyers last night, and if the Nashville Predators can't/won't match...

Reports: Weber signs offer with Philly

The Nashville Predators already lost Ryan Suter in free agency. Shea Weber could be next, having signed a 14-year, $100 million offer sheet with Philadelphia, according to multiple reports.

The Shea Weber Negotiations: Holmgren vs. Poile

Courtesy of Mike Strasinger/AP By Charlie O’Connor (@THG_Charlie) Let the staring contest commence. With an offer sheet for Shea Weber now on the table, Philadelphia Flyers GM Paul Holmgren and Nashville Predators GM David Poile are locked in a game of chicken, with one player’s contract, the immediate future of one franchise, and the long-term health of another franchise all...
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