Fedorov, club call off negotiations

BY HELENE ST. JAMES

FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER

Negotiations to keep potential unrestricted free agent Sergei Fedorov in a Red Wings uniform have been adjourned until the end of the playoffs.

General manager Ken Holland and Fedorov’s agent, Pat Brisson, decided this week they were too far apart to get anything done by early next week. Holland has a long-standing policy of not negotiating during the playoffs.

“I talked to Pat Brisson, and it doesn’t look like we’re going to get anything done, so we’re just going to wait until the playoffs are over,” Holland said Wednesday.

Fedorov, who earlier in the season rejected a five-year, $50-million offer, said last week he remained hopeful a deal could be worked out before the start of the playoffs. He was unaware that talks had been tabled but shrugged off the news.

“All my focus is on hockey and finishing the season on a good note and see where we end up,” he said. “The other part, Pat and Kenny will take care of it. I’m not concerned — I’m aware of those things, but first things first — hockey and hockey and hockey. I don’t want to be center of attention before playoffs start; I just want to do my job.”

Fedorov, 33, leads the team with 78 points, and needs three goals to reach 400 for his career. He is one of the NHL’s top 10 forwards, but few teams will be able to afford the estimated $10 million-$11 million annual salary he desires. He won’t publicly discuss money issues, but he admitted last week he would like a five- or six-year deal.

Should the Wings play four rounds in the playoffs, Holland would have only a three-week window to sign Fedorov before free agency begins July 1. Holland said he wasn’t concerned.

“I think, from everything that has been told to me, he wants to stay,” Holland said.

http://www.freep.com/sports/redwings/wcorn3_20030403.htm


36 Responses to Fedorov, club call off negotiations

  1. mikster says:

    Sorry i got to do this, but i don’t want two same topics seperately.

    Primis writes: “Sergei Fedorov leads the Wings currently with 78 points in 77 games heading into tonight’s tilt with the Islanders. And with Fedorov’s contract ending at the end of this season, resigning a guy with a line of 33-45-78 is a no-brainer right?…

    Well, maybe it’s really not quite that easy…

    Perhaps noone in the recent history of the Winged Wheel drives Detroit fans as absolutely bonkers as Fedorov (Slava Kozlov being a far second). The guy is either on fire, or can’t hit the broad side of a barn from 3 feet away (does anyone shoot high and wide as often as Sergei?).

    Fedorov has also admittedly had problems with a father who needs to learn to shut up, and agents who may or may not have been reflecting Fedorov’s views. These are not exactly good things to be dealing with in a Contract Year.

    Fedorov is only making a measly-by-NHL-standards $2 mill. this year. He surely is going to want much, much more to come back to the Wings, especially if Yzerman does retire at the close of the season. Is Fedorov really worth $8 or $9 mill a year to the Wings?

    PROS: Fedorov is indeed responsible on the defensive side (though he still is prone to making very boneheaded plays in his own end at times). He also puts up substantial numbers year after year. And he shows up for the playoffs (usually).

    CONS: Fedorov’s leadership qualities never have developed — in fact he’s more often the source of a problem or a rumored problem than anyone else on the Wings. And though he puts up numbers, he does so VERY inconsistently, going on four- or five-goal spurts and then being silent for a week or so. He also quite frankly has lost a step — the much-heralded speed he used to have isn’t there, and several guys on the Wings now are easily as fast or faster than Sergei.

    INTANGIBLES: The most compelling reason to resign him might in fact be to keep him from signing with anyone else? Imagine if Colorado or Dallas ponied up for him? Or perhaps even worse, someone like Chicago? The question on everyone’s mind though is: Does Sergei himself want to be back in a Wings uniform?

    Wings fans, explain why you do or don’t want to see Sergei back in Detroit.

    And to everyone, where does Sergei end up, why, and for how much?!? Explain, and bonus points for including figuries and salaries to back things up (ie “Can so-and-so actually afford him realistically?”).

    Have fun…

  2. Primis says:

    Fine by me, mik. Same topic so fire away, everyone!

    (BTW, any way we could see what’s already queued up for stories awaiting posting?).

  3. rojoke says:

    If the Wings don’t sign him before July 1, the first call his agent takes will be from Pierre Lacroix, if he’s still there. The second will be from Doug Armstrong. And the third will probably be from Bobby Clarke. I think that the major cause of Sergei’s inconsistent performance was Scotty Bowman. What other coach takes a top three forward and makes him a defenseman? It was typical Scotty, keeping players on their toes by doing the unexpected. With Dave Lewis in charge, it’s no longer a factor. That may play a role in keeping Sergei in Motown. I think Mike Illitch will get involved, if necessary, and Fedorov will re-sign in Detroit.

  4. BabyLeaf says:

    I dunno it seems to me that Sergei isn’t really interested in signing with Detroit…who knows.

    If he does leave, I think he’ll probably end up in LA!

  5. WeStSiDe says:

    LA’s Owner said he wont spend that kind of money, and stoop to the Rangers level…. So out of the question…

  6. mikster says:

    (BTW, any way we could see what’s already queued up for stories awaiting posting?).

    Nope!

  7. Sands says:

    LA WOULD BE MY FIRST GUESS….he said he wants to be in a warmer place…. and it is the west cost…. were he has no problems playing…… Dallas…. nahhh not really, not enough left in the high bank accout……. Rangers…..Maybe…. If yes…. Lindros won’t be back…… and maybe richter will retire, along with Bure…..that opens enough to sign kovalev and Fedorov.

    But that might not work out. If he makes it to July first, the Rangers will throw so much money at him that he would be crazy not to take it… That is a sure bet.

  8. Tony says:

    Detroit needs Fedorov back. This guy is a huge playoff performer. He plays againts the other teams top lines in the playoffs and he puts up better then a point a game numbers. Yzerman won’t be back next year, and neither will Luc, Larinov and maybe even Chelios will be gone, which will free up enough money to sign him. Detroit has alot of great younger players coming up to replace the old guys (Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Bykov, Fisher etc.) so why wouldn’t Fedorov not want to stick around?

  9. -Swizz- says:

    i hope he re-signs with detroit…

    not a wings fan….its good to see a player actually stick with one team for a long time….

    would make me sick if he signed in nyr….

    doubt toronto would spend anymore money….doubt nyi would spend either…philly maybe….

    what about teams like atlanta? do they have any money? they dont have any big stars..could maybe afford someone like fedorov..

  10. pop0331 says:

    I think this year the Wings will get bounced early and that would lead to him heading somewhere else. What about Carolina? Rutherford offered him a fortune a few years ago and he was very close to signing with them, and they freed up some money this year. I wouldn’t like to see him go there but it could be a strong possibility if he’s unsigned. If they go to conference finals or finals, I think they come to terms in Detroit.

  11. BosBrn says:

    Atlanta doesn’t have any big stars? What do you call Stefan, Kovalchuk, and Heatley? This team with these guys will be a force to reckon with in the next few seasons! The way Nurminen is playing, and if Dafoe can come back and be a leader, they have soldi goaltending. They already have Kozlov, Savard, & McEachern as well. I think Atlanta will be fine. With Hartley as coach, they’ll make the playoff next year, and may even surprise a few people!

  12. -Swizz- says:

    well i dont call stefan a star..

    as for the other 2, i meant big $$ star…kovalchuk and heatley are still on their rookie contracts arent they?

    they have a low payroll right? they do have money right? they could maybe afford someone like fedorov and make a strong push for the playoffs..

    fedorov could help someone like kovalchuk play a little D!

  13. Just-Checking-In says:

    Mick:

    A couple of things about that story.

    “Fedorov is only making a measly-by-NHL-standards $2 mill. this year.”

    Yes but you also have to remember that because of the restricted FA offer from Carolina, he got $26 million of his contract in early 1997. So do not look on his $2 million a year as a player that has been under payed and is looking for a contract.

    Secondly, Fedorov is looking at LENGTH probably more than the money aspect with a new deal. Remember he has turned down 5 years 50 million.

    Does anyone think Colorado is going to pony up that kind of money? Not with the money they have tied up into Sakic, Forsberg, Roy and Blake. They can’t afford Fedorov. Plus, name me the last significant Free Agent Lacroix signed.

    Dallas: Again, I think the money train has left the station in Dallas as well. I remember the Stars General Manager (I just forgot his name) talking with ESPN News and saying that the Stars were not players in the trade deadline since they had pretty much reached their budget and had done all of their work in the off-season. Now the Stars did add some players at the dead-line, but those were mostly low end deals. Also how many more centers do the Stars need on their team?

    Chicago? I really do not see that happening. The Hawks are in rebuild mode, they are not going to want to spend $10-12 million a year on Fedorov.

    With the long rumored lock out coming after the end of next season, teams are going to be hesitant to spend $10+ million a year for five to six years on a player when no one knows what the new CBA will look like. There are a few teams that will be even in the market.

    Also, since Fedorov has won his cups, he may surprise people in where he would look at going. I doubt that teams would be looking to him for a leadership figure, rather they will get a very expensive floater who is more concerned about himself and scoring goals and not getting hurt, than marking the playoffs and being a team leader.

    I really expect him to resign with Detroit though.

  14. Just-Checking-In says:

    I think the chances of that happening are remote. The Canes are not in a financial position to do something like that.

    Owner Peter Karmanos has stated publically a few times already that he regrets making that offer to Fedorov now. He says that by doing that he helped push the salaries higher for the league and now his team in Carolina is feeling that sting.

  15. Freeze says:

    I can’t imagine Fedorov getting more than $10 million a year with anyone. With the CBA coming up next year, I would imagine that teams are concerned with sky high salaries, Detroit, New York, and Toronto are probably the only teams that could afford him. It’s not likely that Fedorov would want to hook up with Bure in New York to form the Anna line, but who knows. What does Toronto have to offer that Detroit doesn’t have to offer? I guess we’ll have to ask Cujo that question.

    I think Fedorov will be back with Detroit.

  16. pop0331 says:

    good point, didn’t even think of that

  17. Freeze says:

    “PROS: Fedorov is indeed responsible on the defensive side (though he still is prone to making very boneheaded plays in his own end at times). He also puts up substantial numbers year after year. And he shows up for the playoffs (usually).”

    If you check the stats, Fedorov plays well in the playoffs EVERY YEAR. When was the last time Fedorov made a boneheaded play in his own end? You obviously don’t see much of Fedorov,otherwise you would write this rubbish.

    “CONS: Fedorov’s leadership qualities never have developed — in fact he’s more often the source of a problem or a rumored problem than anyone else on the Wings.”

    What the hell problems are you talking about??? Give specific examples.

    You spend your entire life watching the Eastern Division (i.e., the New York Rangers) and you know NOTHING about Fedorov and the superior West!!

  18. mikster says:

    Hey, i didn’t write that story!

    Anyway, i say the Canes will again try to land him. If Bure retires, along with Richter (14M trim) then Dolan would like Slats to sigg Fedorov. I say the Thrashers might want to invest in Sergei. If the Devils were willing to sign Holik for $8.5M a season, they might give it a shot.

    Just naming teams that will show interest.

  19. titans says:

    I’d sell my left testical if Federov could be a Flyer!

  20. mikster says:

    THing is, Fedorov will get the Wings to give him the money he would take. He doesn’t need the Wings, the Wings need him.

    St. Louis Blues would not mind pissing off Detroit, and they can try to make an offer to Fedorov.

    Thrashers will show interest.

    The Candy Canes will definitely show interest once again.

    If Bure retires, along with Richter. Fedorov New York Bound.

    Fedorov does not have that many choices since he is asking for a whole lot.

    My guess though, Wings will sign him.

  21. mikster says:

    then the new posts will be:

    Re: Fedorov, club call off negotiations (Score: 1)

    by ans on Friday, April 04 @ 14:14:19 EST

  22. jon95616 says:

    LA is the place he is rumored to want to go to…but then you have to think about how the Kings are complaining about losing millions and are cost cutting…so they wouldnt be looking for a 10 million dollar player right???

    and if he likes s.cali…theres Anaheim too…but they already have a 10 million dollar player in Kariya….

    so really you have to think Detroit will resign him or he will take some crazy offer from the Rangers.

  23. jon95616 says:

    I know he likes LA….but LA is cost cutting, losing millions right now…they wont add a 10 million dollar player..sorry.

    Rangers or resign with Redwings….thats it.

  24. jon95616 says:

    no i dont see Atlanta throwing 10 million at one player. They are building smart through the draft and midrange signings.

  25. jon95616 says:

    Carolina wont get involved this time. Atlanta isnt going to throw 10 mill at one player, they are building the right way. St. Louis maybe an outside chance. but its really Rangers or resign with Redwings.

  26. jon95616 says:

    He doesnt want to play for Carolina. And they are smart enough not to spend 10 million on one player.

    Detroit will get past first round of playoffs.

    Don’t think it matters too much how far they go after that as far as his future with the team. If they lose in 7 games to Colorado hes not going to all the sudden want to play for some other team. sorry.

  27. mikster says:

    Not the Rangers, unless Bure retires, then maybe.

    Atlanta is not rebuilding the right way. Waddell has been trying to sign UFA players for 3 straight off-season. I mean, he signed Uwe Krupp!!!! The organization even sent a cool video of the Thrashers to make the UFA’s interested last off-season.

  28. chaos83 says:

    The Wings need to resign him simply because they will be losing centers in Igor Larionov and Steve Yzerman if not next season then very soon. The wings have been dedicated to staying competitive, but they are also a little smarter about it than the Rangers. Will they sign Federov to a lengthy expensive contract with the CBA looming in 2004? Who knows, but thats probably the only sticking point seeing as how money isn’t a problem in Detroit.

  29. Just-Checking-In says:

    Hey I didn’t say that you did write the story. I just said here are some things about the story.

    Also do not expect much interest from Carolina. Peter Karmanos has stated many times that he made a mistake offering Fedorov that type of money and that he thinks he is partlly responsible for the escalating salaries. Plus Carolina is not looking to add that much salary for that long.

    I would see the Rangers as a viable option, however I do not think that Fedorov is going to want to play in a offensively challenged system like New Jersey.

  30. Just-Checking-In says:

    Signing Free Agents is one thing, investing over $10 million a year on one player is another thing, especially when the entire team payroll is slightly more than $30 million.

  31. Primis says:

    I think you underestimate the value to Karamanos of getting under Illith’s skin.

    Yes, things are worse in Raleigh again, but Illitch and Karamanos really do truly hate each other, and have for a long time….

  32. Just-Checking-In says:

    There is no doubt about Karmanos and Illitich dislike for each other, however I really do not think that Karmanos can afford to try to piss Illitich off.

    The Canes had to think long and hard about shelling out money for Francis, it was only after the fans got in an uproar that they resigned him for two years.

    Plus I do not think the NHL has reached the collusion level yet, however the NHL is really clamping down on big signings.

    So is Karmanos going to pony up at least $60 million minimum over 6 years?

    Again, sure the owners dislike each other, however Fedorov is not the way to do it.

  33. defenestrate says:

    Money aside (and it is a big consideration), there is an “intangible” here. Colorado would never stand for a “big name” Wing migrating to the Avs. It just won’t happen. We all hate the ^%$#@!&s. It’s just an instinctual, primal thing. Besides, who wants a child molester that’s tied to the Russian mob?

  34. defenestrate says:

    I figured you only had one to begin with. That was the case with Napoleon and Hitler…lol

  35. defenestrate says:

    And, it would be better if you gave the right one – then the posting would be from “tit”…

  36. jon95616 says:

    Yeah thats true they look to sign midrange UFAs…but not a ten million dollar player.

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