True, but Stafford for drafted, so he really didn't have a choice in the matter initially, that is if he wanted to have a career in the league.
That is another thing Minny fans can be relieved over, the fact that Granlund finally signed a contract with them, because if he hadn't signed a contract this July - he would've been eligible to re-enter next year's draft - and potentially hope to get drafted by a better team.
True, but Minny is in a difficult situation because they have a reputation of being a franchise where no free agent wants to end up, so they either have to be OK with being that type of a franchise and be content with only signing 2nd or 3rd tier free agents - or they can give 1st tier FAs these type of deals to get them on their roster. And even then those FAs have to interested in coming to Minny for some reason or another as with Parise, Suter and Cullen.
After I looked at the structure of the contracts more closely, they're not as bad as I initially thought. They are very heavily frontloaded with big bonuses for the first years. While their cap hits will be huge in the beginning, those will become much more affordable in the latter part of the contracts. So, hypothetically, Minny could be able to move one or both of them to a team which needs to get to the cap floor during the latter part of their contracts, buuuuuut, of course that would mean that they'd have to waive their NMCs to make that happen.
All in all, it was a good deal for Minny and for Parise and Suter, since the players got payed NHL Top 5 all-time contracts while not being that in actual player stature or ability - and Minny will have more star- and fan appeal. Still, Minny is far from being a contender with these moves, since their blueline corps is pretty weak. The young defensemen had a good season last season (much better than expected, especially in the beginning when Minny was doing so well), but their deficiencies were pretty blatant at the end of the season. Also, I'm not convinced by their offensive line-ups, and they really don't have a legitimate 2nd line center, because if they expect Granlund to fill that spot they are stretching it a bit in my opinion.
But, since I'm a fan of Minnesota hockey in general - having been a Northstars fan as a little boy (still hate Dallas for stealing the franchise) - I'm glad they signed with Minny instead of a place like Chicago.
after a day of reflecting , it is still mind-boggling that FA one and 1-A ended up there. That Lou Nanne is a hell of a GM
Overall, good for hockey.
Just want to brag for a moment that Matt Carle is back in Hockey Bay...
and I'm done
I didn't know that about Stafford's past, but in light of what you said, it certainly looks like he truly wanted to play for Detroit. So, he came into the draft as a junior? In any case, Detroit has a very good QB in him, and it's always much easier to build a team for success when you have a franchise QB to build the team around.
He is good at the transition which was our glaring hole last season (IMO). We are beyond set at scoring, just need to work on puck movement. Yeah, I would like a little more grit but looking at who Stevie is bringing in and moving out, I don't see it in our future.