Lindros to Stay in the Big Apple, NO Jagr

The NYPost, and TSN.ca, reports that center Eric Lindros has exercised his player option, and will most likely play next season with the team.By LARRY BROOKS

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June 11, 2003 — Eric Lindros has exercised his one-year option for next season and the Rangers will not buy out the contract, The Post learned yesterday.

That means Lindros will earn a $3.3 million base salary and up to $6 million in bonuses for essentially avoiding a debilitating head injury – unless the parties agree to restructure the deal later this summer.

Glen Sather called Lindros’ father and agent, Carl, to broach the subject of restructuring the pact, raising the base salary and tying bonuses to performance (rather than number of games played), The Post reported last month. There has, though, been no further discussion on the matter.

Under terms of the CBA, the Rangers could have bought out Lindros’ contract for $2.2 million – or two-thirds of his base salary – before July 1, which would have made the 30-year-old center an unrestricted free agent. It is now far more likely that Lindros, who last year endured the worst season of his career (19-34-53), will be a Ranger when training camp opens about three months from now.

Meanwhile, disregard the ludicrous rumor that the Rangers would be willing to deal Lindros to Washington for Jaromir Jagr, who has five years and $55 million remaining on his contract.

No team is going to take an annual $11 million hit under the $38 to $45 million cap threshold that every league executive believes will be stipulated in the next CBA. Not even the Rangers.

While Jagr’s contract will be a post-2004 burden to whichever team owns it, Lindros has one year remaining on his deal – a team option for $10.25 million for 2004-05. The Rangers have commitments only to Bobby Holik and Darius Kasparaitis after the CBA expires next September.

http://www.nypost.com/sports/rangers/36346.htm