Fire0nice228 wrote:I think its funny that everyone assumes the Pens will buy out Paul Martin (or anyone really)... The Pens are a 'break even' team who have openly said they have to get to atleast the second round to turn a meaningful profit. These are real dollars coming out of Mario and Burkles pocket and I don't believe that there is a whole ton of extra flying around like the Rangers or others have..
If the cap was set to the original $60M that was being floated, he would have almost had to have been bought out. At $64.3M, the Pens have $11M to fill a roster next year with roughly 8 players instead of only having $7M. I think he stays.
It's not next season that is the issue, it's after next season. Again, I'm not sure how they've set it up. If any team does a buyout, does it have to be done before the start of next season? Can it wait till after next season? That will all play a part in it.
After next season there's quite a few salary issues that will be addressed. Malkin, Letang, Vokoun, Orpik, Niskanen, Engelland, Kunitz, Glass, McIntyre and Despres are all FAs. I'm sure the Penguins will not necessarily sign or even attempt to sign all of those players, but it could affect the cap significantly.
I think it's a safe assumption that Malkin will re-sign for a similar contract unless he decides he wants to leave to get more money. Letang is the biggest wildcard of the bunch. He makes $3.5M now, but what will his value be by then? What will the market value be? It's vague, but he could garner anywhere from $5M to $7M on the open market(always giving way to teams willing to overpay). If Despres pans out the way everyone will think, it's still vague, but he could be a $1.5M to $2M a year player depending on the market. Between all of those players, some costing less, some costing more, I think it's safe to say the spending could increase around $5M. That's not significant, but Martin's salary would make room for that will keeping space free to fill other holes.
Who really knows. I'd like to see Martin get bought out, but I'm also intrigued to see what he can prove this year. I hate to give in to any of these unsubstantiated Gonchar rumors, but I wouldn't be opposed to a Martin/Gonchar swap. I mean, Gonchar can't really be any worse defensively than Martin has.