Wednesday, September 07, 2005

The Ironic Curtain

The Red Wings lost their bid to re-sign one of their top young players, Pavel Datsyuk. Datsyuk has signed with a team in Siberia, presumably because they are able to pay him more than the Wings, whose free-spending ways have been curtailed by the NHL's new salary cap. I hope the irony isn't lost on Datsyuk that he is leaving America to come back to Russia, where teams aren't encumbered by so many economic restrictions. Of course, maybe the real reason is that he decided he would rather live in Siberia than Detroit.

All kidding aside, I'm not trying to trash the NHL salary cap here. It's preventing my favorite team, the Red Wings, from executing their win at all costs strategy, which was better than the Rangers' lose at all costs strategy, but it really hasn't been paying dividends for a number of years. The Wings kept adding overpriced veterans who rarely performed up to their potential, if at all, instead of trying to integrate young talent into their core. I'm sad to see Datsyuk go because he was one of the few young guys they have who has shown flashes of brilliance. The fact that he's going to Russia makes the loss a little easier to stomach and it also makes his salary demands look even more unreasonable. I think Datsyuk is going to be a great player and I hope that the Wings can somehow hold onto him when and if he decides to come back to the NHL.

3 comments:

MDS said...

"The Wings kept adding overpriced veterans who rarely performed up to their potential, if at all, instead of trying to integrate young talent into their core."

Although sports teams that have more money than their opponents are clearly at an advantage, it's interesting how often those teams squander their resources on bad personnel decisions. I remember when Daniel Snyder first started adding free agents to the Redskins, he got a lot of attention for it, but the odd thing was that he was adding a bunch of guys who were past their prime. In the NFL, of course, there's a hard salary cap, which means the 'Skins big signing bonii eventually came back to haunt them. The NHL now has an even harder salary cap. But in baseball, with only a luxury tax that the Yankees don't mind paying, teams can spend as much as they want. And yet the Yankees are a good team but not a dominant one.

dusty said...

Bonii?

dhodge said...

I used to buy into the great sports fallacy that $ = 'ships. I don't know if I even buy into the revised version states that the more money a team spends, the better chance it has at making the postseason. I think that if you line up great management and give them an average amount of money to play around with, you've got a much better chance at fielding a winning team than if you have a fat wad of cash and an average management team.

Oh, and by the way, bonii is my new favorite word.