Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Should the Canadiens sign Alex Radulov to a long term contract?

Okay, I’ll say it. I don’t want Alex Radulov signed to a long-term deal.

Right now, he’s found money. What we’re getting out of him right now, at 30, as he’s trying to prove himself to the entire NHL and he’s on his best behaviour, putting out 110% effort most nights, is amazing, great value for the no-risk contract Marc Bergevin signed him to.

It’s a very short track record though, to entertain ideas of a 4 or 5 or 6 year deal. With a raise in salary.

That’s too much risk for me. I’d fold rather than keep anteing up into that pot.

The way to build is through the draft. I’d keep my powder dry, save those future dollars to pay for our own players that we develop. Patch on other reclamation projects on no-risk deals when we’re not using those dollars.

Slow and steady does it. It’s unwise to swing for the fences all the time. And as I said before, I don’t think this is really a window for the Cup for us, we’re not a deep and talented club. We still need to pack on players and prospects, and we don’t benefit by taking on a 30-year-old player on a large long-term deal.

I wanted Tomas Plekanec traded at the end of his last contract, at the deadline, before his play started to decline, when he still had value that would net us young players or prospects or draft picks. To turn around and advocate for a big UFA-type deal for Radu wouldn’t be consistent.

Plus, signing him now means we have to protect him in the expansion draft, and will lose an incrementally better player by consequence.

My ideal pie-in-the-sky scenario is for Radu to keep playing like he is, and if Marc Bergevin can’t get him to bite on a reasonable three-year deal, you flip him to a contender at the deadline for a young player and a first-round pick. I know this won’t happen, Marc Bergevin won’t unload players this year with our position in the standings, but long-term, this would be best for us.

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