Jul 9, 2010, 1:30 PM EST
So much for NHL GMs eschewing their inner Kevin Lowes so they don’t anger the Brian Burkes of the world.
The San Jose Sharks threw down a serious gauntlet on their Western Conference tormentors, signing Chicago Blackhawks restricted free agent defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson to a stunning four-year, $14 million offer sheet. (Source: TSN.)
Chicago has seven days to match the offer. If the team does not match it, they will receive San Jose’s first and third round picks in the 2011 NHL entry draft.
That’s a big raise for the defenseman with a funny last name (it would be a $3.5 million per year cap hit). Hjalmarsson impressed during the 2009-10 season, even though he took a backseat to players such as Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook. He played about 19:39 minutes per game in the regular season but saw a significant jump in the playoffs, going all the way to 21 minutes every contest (behind only Keith and Seabrook, actually).
I have to say, I wonder if the Sharks would have been able to get away with sending a more modest offer (even shaving a half million off per year) considering the fact that the Blackhawks are in such a bind. While this is just speculation on my part, I’d say it’s nearly unthinkable that Chicago would match this offer sheet.
In other words, Hjalmarsson and Dustin Penner might be offer sheet cousins in a week. While he can’t receive an offer sheet because he filed for salary arbitration, you have to wonder if Antti Niemi is on his way out too.
- Been there, done that: Oilers lose five straight for second time this season 0
- Prout drops Lucic: ‘As far as I was concerned we were engaged in a fight’ 17
- Video: Prout drops Lucic with one punch 29
- NHL grants Kings cap relief for Voynov, who’s still suspended indefinitely 30
- Trade: Stars get Demers from Sharks, send Dillon to San Jose 17
- The Leafs didn’t salute their fans last night, so that’s a thing now 75
- Dallas signs Jason Spezza to four-year, $30 million extension 18
- Video: Ovechkin with an unreal dangle, scores game-winner 17
- Video: Avs’ Tanguay takes Ovechkin shot to the face (Updated) 4
- Video: Lindros and LeClair inducted into the Flyers Hall of Fame 13
- The Leafs didn’t salute their fans last night, so that’s a thing now (75)
- Jack Johnson filed for bankruptcy, parents allegedly took advantage of him (58)
- Wild put Harding on waivers (Updated) (52)
- After Voynov suspension, Lombardi wonders if teams need a ‘cushion’ in case a player is a ‘bank robber, kleptomaniac’ (51)
- Prout drops Lucic: ‘As far as I was concerned we were engaged in a fight’ (44)