Will Havlat be at camp?

From the Ottawa Citizen:

Ken Warren

The Ottawa Citizen

Friday, August 22, 2003

CREDIT: Jana Chytilova, The Ottawa Citizen

“Martin Havlat made $675,000 U.S. last season, the final one on his entry-level NHL contract.

Martin Havlat’s contract talks with the Ottawa Senators have stalled because of the cloudy NHL market for restricted free agents in similar situations.

Havlat, 22, just completed his three-year, entry-level contract with the Senators, putting him in the same class as Marian Gaborik of the Minnesota Wild, Mike Comrie of the Edmonton Oilers and Brad Richards of the Tampa Bay Lightning, who also remain unsigned.

With the NHL possibly headed for a work stoppage before the 2004-05 season, teams and players’ agents are uncertain about how to approach contract talks with rising stars coming out of their first deals.

Havlat, who made $675,000 U.S. last year, was disappointed with the Senators’ initial two-year contract offer last month.

However, his value should become clearer if Gaborik, Comrie or Richards sign new deals.

All four players have similar NHL statistics.

Havlat scored 24 goals and 35 assists in 2002-03, and 65 goals and 86 assists in his three seasons.

Richards scored 17 goals and 57 assists last season, and has career totals of 58 goals and 140 assists.

Gaborik had 30 goals and 35 assists last season, and has 78 goals and 90 assists.

Comrie netted 20 goals and 31 assists a year ago, and has 61 goals and 72 assists.

“It will be interesting to see if these guys get four-year deals, like Vincent Lecavalier and Joe Thornton received last summer, or if teams offer one-year deals,” said Allan Walsh, the agent for Havlat and Gaborik. “Nobody’s sure what happens if there’s a lockout for the whole (2004-05) season. We’re dealing, to a certain extent, in a black hole.”

It’s unlikely Havlat or any of the other players would accept one-year contracts because NHL players can’t apply for salary arbitration until they’ve completed five seasons in professional hockey.

Havlat says he wants to be in Ottawa for the opening of training camp Sept. 13, but he won’t be unless he has a contract.

“Of course I want to be there, but we’ll see what happens in the next two or three weeks,” he said yesterday before playing an exhibition game in the Czech Republic with Jaromir Jagr, Martin Straka, Martin Rucinsky and Vaclav Prospal. “I thought we were going to talk a little bit more this summer, but we haven’t talked at all. I know that (the Senators) have to do what they have to do, but I really hope we can get a deal done before camp.”

Havlat has a backup plan. He’s under contract to play for Znjono of the Czech League, at $10,000 per game. Havlat could play up to nine games with Znjono without worry, but, if he plays with that club after the NHL schedule begins in October, he will become ineligible to play in the NHL this season.”

I wonder if those GMs ( Sens, Wildn Oilers and Lightning) are on the phone with each other trying to set a salary level with each other?

I wonder if those player’s agents are also on the phone with each other?

Havlat is really the last remaining piece in the Senators puzzle this year.Everyone on most of the message bords i’ve seen have been calling for a trade for a scoring left winger, but i think they’ll wait and see how Schastlivy pans out in a full season, or more importantly, if he stays healthy for a full season.

I for one think that they’ll get a deal done by around the start of training camp, if for no other reason, to keep the celebratory atmosphere that comes with the successful end of the ownership saga alive.Also,If you were Havlat, would you want to miss out on a chance, a very legitimate chance, to win the cup over a difference of a few hundred k/year?

I’m betting on a two year deal worth just under $2m/year, with bonuses that could take it up to 2.5m or 3m/year. It’s not like the Sens are going to be offensively deficient if they don’t get him signed, so they have some leverage that way, but it’s also hard to argue that they’re not a better team with him than without him.

I also think he’ll be worth it.


9 Responses to Will Havlat be at camp?

  1. titans says:

    Ahhh camp…I remember camp. I met my first girlfriend there Dawn something or other…I dumped her on her birthday! Whata dick I was!

  2. godblessHABS says:

    Tampa just resigned Brad Richards last week, maybe it will accelarate the processus

  3. titans says:

    or it’ll acelerate the process…who knows!

  4. dlo44 says:

    donn’t yu hav anithing bettor two dew?

    thes shood keyp yu oqewpied.

  5. titans says:

    Didn’t I see you in Deliverance?!?!

  6. titans says:

    What the hell is that h.k.?!?! You dorks and your secret internet code! Do you need a goddamned de-coder ring to translate that crap!?!?

  7. titans says:

    Well obee kaybee mush mouth!

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