Murray on Bobby Ryan: "We increased our offer yesterday on Bobby Ryan, went to five years at $5 million a year."
Bobby Ryan turned down five years at 25M i.e. a sum comparable to the 5.325M/yr. deals which are currently guiding Getzlaf (backloaded) and Perry (frontloaded) to unrestricted free agency. Murray noted that a four year deal for less was flatly refused. More after the jump...
So what's the thinking here? Since there seems to be some confusion, I've made a chart approximating how Bobby becoming a UFA in 2014 is likely affecting negotiations. Only the 5yr/25M offer is official in any way.
|Ducks Want||4M||4M||4M||4M||UFA :(|
For Bobby, he's dealing with a 5.325M ceiling in Anaheim (established by Getzlaf), and a four year contract would take him to the ripe age of 27 and his first crack at unrestricted free agency. For the Ducks, they'd like to either give him a contract comparable to Getzlaf and Perry's and get an extra year of otherwise UFA time out of him or, if they have to take him directly to UFA status, get a reduced price.
Bobby could explore offer sheets, of course, and try to get 4 yrs/20M from another team, but I don't know how many teams would be willing to play Bobby's negotiator and make an offer that will just be matched. Of course, an offer like 4 yrs/25M becomes multiple first round picks and increases the chances you take Ryan home, but does anyone have that to spend?
A holdout is also a possibility, though with both parties going to the press, it's hard to imagine what could be achieved by a holdout and further games. Still, Murray saying he's "done for a while" has to cause concern for those fans determined to keep Ryan in the brace. I've often compared this situation to Kariya's holdout in '97, where term and the nature of the RFA conditions of that day's CBA came heavily into play, and in that sense, a holdout is very logical here. Only here, instead of the Ducks being intent on a longterm deal that deprives the player of free agency negotiation periods, it seems to be the player intent on depriving the organization of a restricted free agency negotiation, a year of his UFA time or a discount without either.
Of course, you can spin both stories both ways, but luckily for these Ducks, it doesn't really matter. Unlike the '97 team, these Ducks actually have a great young core without Bobby Ryan. They haven't built their franchise around this number 9, and sending him away (or back home to Philadelphia) wouldn't kill them. Ryan took a risk by going to the press; Murph came right back and put the numbers in the media. Let the "money hungrey weasel" talk of the pro-management Anaheim fans begin. The "pay him what he's worth" talk is certainly likely to die down. But I, as always, remain pro player, and I think they should just trade the guy to a place that will give him exactly what he wants. No need to breed contempt with Fowler or future negotiation subjects by mismanaging this.