July 04, 2012

Minnesota Wild agrees to terms with Parise and Suter: The Wild scored a major coup, agreeing to terms Wednesday with Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, considered the two biggest prizes in this year's free-agent class. Parise, a forward who is a Minnesota native, and Suter, a defenseman, each received 13-year, $98 million deals according to people familiar with the terms. Parise and Suter will form a star-studded tandem that will be expected to alter the fortunes of a franchise that has missed the playoffs four consecutive seasons.

posted by tommytrump to hockey at 01:04 PM - 7 comments

Well, I suppose it's kind of cool that Parise is playing in his home state, but this Devils fan will miss the captain and heart and soul of the team. After the Kovalchuk deal, and with the financial condition of the team, I didn't have high hopes that the Devils could keep him. Still going to suck seeing him in another uniform.

posted by tahoemoj at 02:33 PM on July 04

This kind of shocked me. I knew they were both considering Minnesota, but I thought the pull of an existing winning team would be hard to beat. I certainly didn't expect both of them to sign with the Wild.

I guess a power play with Heatley, Koivu and Parise could be pretty good, with Suter on the back end.

The Wild have good goaltending, and their defense just got a lot better with Suter, who can eat up minutes. This team got off to a good start in the first part of last season but fell apart at the end there.

They still need to make the playoffs, but with these signings expectations should be much higher.

posted by insomnyuk at 03:47 PM on July 04

Parise and Suter will be 41 and 40 years old, respectively, at the end of these contracts. While players tend to"age" a bit better in hockey than in other sports, 13 years still leaves a long time for the deterioration of skills and the possibility of serious or career threatening injury. The average salary for each will be just a bit over $7.5M, a total of $15M for both, which eats up somewhere around 20%-25% of their cap. In order to keep this sort of salary structure going, Minnesota will need to develop a lot of young talent, keep it around on rookie deals, and hope they can keep the youngsters at short money. It will take a very astute GM to make all this work for the long term. Suffice it to say that if no Stanley Cup is delivered to the Wild anytime soon, there might be some management heads on the block.

posted by Howard_T at 04:23 PM on July 04

As a Wings fan, this news is sorely disappointing.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 08:26 PM on July 04

Wow. That is a surprise, but my immediate reaction is that they really overpaid. I guess I never considered either guy to be a $7MM player.

That said, the Wild are undoubtedly a deeper stronger team with these two pick-ups. That roster is looking mighty good right about now.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 09:51 PM on July 04

It helped that Suter is a Midwestern guy whose wife, Becky, is from Bloomington. And the allure of playing at home for Parise, born in Minneapolis and a resident of Orono, was strong. His parents, J.P. and Donna Parise, live in Prior Lake, and he's getting married this month to Alisha Woods and wants to build his own family.

The home-team advantage doesn't only work on the field. While it certainly worked here, it doesn't sound like the Wild had to do a lot of strong-arming on the home-field front.

posted by roberts at 10:10 PM on July 04

In order to keep this sort of salary structure going, Minnesota will need to develop a lot of young talent, keep it around on rookie deals, and hope they can keep the youngsters at short money.

Well, the cap is going to go up significantly. It's grown $31M since 2005-06. The relative burden this places on their flexibility is more substantial when they're going to be in their prime and producing more.

To put that into perspective, the awful Rick Dipietro contract has gone from 10.2% of the cap for the Islanders to 6.4% and will be less than 1% if this trend continues by the end of the deal. You never want to spend money for nothing, but these deals won't be the team killers everyone thinks they are 10 years from now.

posted by dfleming at 03:11 PM on July 05

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