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Why is everyone so scared of getting Rick Nash?

Feb 17, 2012, 1:46 PM EDT

Rick Nash Getty Images

Wysh wrote a post today for Puck Daddy that listed all the teams in the Rick Nash derby and why they don’t need the Columbus captain. And the post made a ton of sense. Acquiring a big contract like Nash’s is fraught with risk. You might give up too much in return. You might negatively alter team chemistry. You might get a player that’s already reached his best-before date.

Of course, on the other hand…IT’S RICK NASH.

Yeah, he’s got a big contract. But he’s got a big contract for a reason – he’s really quite a good hockey player.

Hockey fans have officially turned into scaredy cats when adding a player like Nash is deemed too risky because of the salary cap. This isn’t Scott Gomez we’re talking about. Gomez had one 30-goal season before Glen Sather broke the bank. Nash has had six, and twice he’s scored 40 or more.

John Buccigross gets it:

source:

Now take the Canucks. (For the sake of argument, let’s forget Nash has reportedly left them off his approved team list.) Do you really think the Sedins would be furious about getting to play with one of the premier snipers in the NHL because they left money on the table to stay in Vancouver? They’ve already got lots of money. What they don’t have is a Stanley Cup. Brian Campbell was overpaid in Chicago but the Blackhawks still seemed pretty happy when they won the Cup.

And so what if Nash is overpaid by a couple of million a season – if I’m Mike Gillis, I’d rather overpay a 30-goal-scorer by a couple of million than give Keith Ballard $4.2 million a season to play 15 minutes a night on the third pairing mixed in with the occasional healthy scratch.

Seriously, am I taking crazy pills here?

  1. bigtganks - Feb 17, 2012 at 1:51 PM

    I can give you 7.8 million reasons a year for years to come…

  2. bcisleman - Feb 17, 2012 at 1:52 PM

    I would be worried about what I am hearing from CLB fans: that he is a very soft player. Takes more than talent to drink from the Cup. You have to be willing to pay the price and CLB fans don’t seem to think Nash is willing. For that, you are going to give up on a big part of your team’s future? Falls under the category of be careful what you wish for.

    • elvispocomo - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:05 PM

      Perhaps that’s true over an 82 game season, but certainly he’s always been very good in international play. He doesn’t play a gritty game but uses his size quite well in balance with his very good skills. With a change of scenery, he might be invigorated to play on a line with Brad Richards and Gaborik, or with the Sedins.

    • metcarfre - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:11 PM

      “You have to be willing to pay a price”

      Maybe if Nash ever got to play for something, he’d be willing to pay a price. Sacrifice himself to take the team out of the draft lottery? Ugh, no thanks.

      What’s that? He goes into beast mode and earns MVP honours at the World Championships and plays hard at the Olympics?

      You don’t say.

      • barkar942 - Feb 17, 2012 at 6:41 PM

        I absolutely agree with your comment, metcarfre. One must have something to play for to be willing to pay a price. He has shown up for international play, but playing for a perennial loser in Columbus hasn’t given him much to be excited about.
        I promise you if he lands in New York, he will learn to do as the others there do, or he will be riding the pine even with his big salary!

    • east96st - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:32 PM

      WHAT? What CBJ fans are you talking to? Name one minute in this poor b**tard’s career has he had ANY real talent on that team with him? The few times that had a player or two that could score a goal besides him, he has had to deal with a sieve in the goal! Not to mention he goes from a coach who believes in the dump and grind, to a coach that believes in “joy” – whatever the hell that means, to a coach that wants everyone to rush the opposite end. You want proof that Nash is a winner, watch the tape of him playing for Team Canada. It’s one of the brief moments in his pro career where he could be in the last five minutes of a game with a three goal lead and NOT have to worry about losing! Is he a screamer? No. So, morons who don’t understand the game think that means he’s not passionate. I’ve seen this guy, for years, make plays completely by himself when the Jackets had long since been eliminated from playoff contention. If your team is a player or two away from the Cup, Nash will get you there. He IS that kind of a guy. There is an idiot class in Columbus that likes to pin the Blue Jackets woes on Nash because he wears the “C” and is NOT an emotional guy. But explain to me how every first rounder EXCEPT Nash didn’t work out and that’s Nash’s fault? Explain to me signing guys long past their primes for top dollar is Rick’s fault. Explain to me how the coaching carousel is Nash’s fault. Explain to me how renegotiating Mason’s contract after just a few months of taking everyone by surprise and sticking with him even when it was obvious the entire League had figured out how to beat him is Nash’s fault. You tell your CBJ fans that say he’s “soft” that I said they are absolute morons and if they think for one second it will get better in Columbus once Rick is gone, they are sadly mistaken. Most nights at Nationwide, he and Umberger are the only two REAL players on the ice. The rest of them just collect their checks and dream of the moment that they can leave and play for ANY other team. People think Columbus is bad NOW, wait until after Rick is gone. The only guy who ever gave a s**t will be hoisting the Cup in another city and Jackets fans will think this year was competitive compared to what they will be next year. Nash is the real deal.

      • bcisleman - Feb 17, 2012 at 3:18 PM

        I’ll admit I don’t watch him often and am going by what I read from CLB posters. He didn’t come up big in his one shot at the playoffs though.

      • east96st - Feb 17, 2012 at 4:34 PM

        “He didn’t come up big in his one shot at the playoffs though.”

        Go back and watch that series. Detroit had figured Steve Mason out and gave the whole League the blueprint on how to beat him. Nash didn’t lose that series. Detroit proved why they were upper echelon. Their coaches, clearly, spent the time and effort to review all the tape that there was on Mason and told their guys how to beat the rookie. Detroit made the necessary adjustments in their game and Columbus had no answer. Period.

    • kitshky - Feb 17, 2012 at 3:19 PM

      I hate to be that guy but … Columbus has fans!?

      • east96st - Feb 17, 2012 at 4:38 PM

        In fairness to us, there’s not a whole hell of a lot else to do. That said, yeah, we’re masochists. You have be to live in the land of kiss the sun goodbye from November until May and if it’s a day of the week that ends in “y”, it must be raining.

  3. elvispocomo - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:08 PM

    If the Canucks could make a deal with Schneider and Ballard that Columbus would accept, I’d seriously think about it. If they can’t move a contract like Ballard’s, they’ll have trouble making the cap work since they’re so close as it is.

  4. govtminion - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:10 PM

    Yes Jason, you’re taking crazy pills. But you’re still right about the Cancuks and Rangers being interested here. The insanity is just a side thing. ;)

  5. tgeth27 - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:11 PM

    Rangers sit 12th in Goals per game and 27th in PP. They need another person to put the puck in the net

  6. dutchman1350 - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    Rick Nash = Scottie Pippen. He can’t carry a team, but you surround with the right people, and you have a Championship. He is a great person, and not outspoken, which is a big problem right now with the CBJ. CBJ need someone more outspoken. Look at the numbers he’s put up on poor clubs. Give him a Center, and he’ll get 80+ points.

  7. bigtganks - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    I’d still take Nash for Schneider and Ballard, and anything else EXCEPT for Hodgson. You can’t give up Schneids and CoHo together. No way, not for Nash.

    But with that said, it’d be a tough sell to the Sedins, Kes, and others who took discounts to bring in a 7.8 mil guy.

  8. zabala81 - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:31 PM

    Lol. Keith ballard

    • bigtganks - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:38 PM

      Salary to make it work. Schneider, Ballard, and of course other prospect and picks.

  9. hsnepts - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:36 PM

    If the Canucks make a pitch for Nash, it will have to include Schneider and Hodgson, and probably Tanev and another asset or pick.
    Would be tough to see Hodgson go – he’s capable of being the scoring leader and captain of this team in 5 years. A future all-star.
    Then we would need to move Ballard as well, for cap space, which leaves us 2 bodies short at the back. So the Ballard deal would need to return some other 3rd-string dman that is much cheaper.
    Would be a good deal for CLB – Schneider, Hodgson and to some extent Tanev is future top end talent at every position. Would only be good for us in win the cup. Otherwise, we just lost our best future player.

    • bigtganks - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:42 PM

      Which is why I say no. You can’t include both. No CoHo. The depth and future is not worth it.

      I’d be surprised if it happened.

      • odj810 - Feb 17, 2012 at 3:50 PM

        who says he’d accept a deal to the canucks? there hasn’t been any inclination he would.

  10. bigtganks - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:41 PM

  11. cableguymike - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:43 PM

    Nash = The next Dany Heatley. As a Canucks fan I DO NOT WANT HIM ON MY TEAM. Please and thank you.

  12. firemarshal1 - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:47 PM

    The NYR organization would be mortgaged for today. The team’s future next year will be like the 1980’s all over again. As a NY Rangers fan, I can’t take anymore mediocre teams. Stay on track with the current set up. Please, Mr. Glen Sather, no more quick fixits. The team is set for a nice run. A small move, here or there, but major trades for Nash. Kneider is the real deal, he”ll cheap for a couple of years. Look ahead, Stephan, Haglen, and Kneider on one line. A match up nightmare for the opposing team coaches. Or even throw-in Gabrolik….do see what I’m saying… The team speed and size would be tremendous. Don’t screw it up.

  13. firemarshal1 - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:49 PM

    The NYR organization would be mortgaged for today. The team’s future next year will be like the 1980′s all over again. As a NY Rangers fan, I can’t take anymore mediocre teams. Stay on track with the current set up. Please, Mr. Glen Sather, no more quick fixits. The team is set for a nice run. A small move, here or there, but major trades for Nash. Kneider is the real deal, he”ll cheap for a couple of years. Look ahead, Stephan, Haglen, and Kneider on one line. A match up nightmare for the opposing team coaches. Or even throw-in Gabrolik….do see what I’m saying… The team speed and size would be tremendous. Don’t screw it up.

  14. afc22 - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:53 PM

    my fear as a Rangers fan is the asking price. I’d assume the Rangers don’t want to destroy the current team chemistry so they’d throw in a #1 pick, Kreider and maybe someone like Erixon to go with Dubinsky.

    But everyone view Kreider as a guy who will be a 30 goal scorer himself in another 1-2 years so they’d be swapping similar players where one is 6 years younger than the other just to make the run this year? Then throw in two more top prospects (including the draft pick)….and they’re hamstringing their cap?

    what if this move doesn’t work out…because in the end no matter how good you look on paper there are a couple others who look just as good, and only one will win the cup. At that point they’re sitting on two big long term contract and no wiggle room plus a couple of top prospects out the door….sorry but no thank you.

  15. leeo00 - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:55 PM

    I think the blues will pick him up, they have some good prospects and an extra goalie laying around they can do some bargaining with!!
    hitch already knows all he needs to know about him.

  16. hsnepts - Feb 17, 2012 at 2:58 PM

    So Brough, you’ve got your answer. Everyone’s scared of getting Nash because most hockey fans would rather have a good team now and forever, instead of a great team now followed by a decade of futility.
    Like all those Calgary fans who keep posting on Nucks blogs that they’d rather have a cup 22 years ago than a year-in year-out contender. I couldn’t disagree more. I spend a lot more time watching live hockey than reading about how great my team used to be.

  17. phillyphever - Feb 17, 2012 at 5:17 PM

    1) Never take anything ESPN says about hockey seriously.

    2) Basically, you need to gut your team in order to get Rash and his salary. Not worth it to the Rangers and Nucks.

    3) I see Toronto being the only team stupid and desperate enough to trade the farm for him.

  18. finfan88shark - Feb 18, 2012 at 2:04 PM

    I agree I find this whole thing against Nash because he makes too much money just a lot of excuse. Here in San Jose we are used to that we have newspaper writers, blog writers and a general manager who are all good at making excuses and excepting failure. All the hacks here say the Sharks don’t need Nash, and why do they say that? Because the Sharks GM Doug Wilson says that. They just sell out and repeat exactly what the apologist tells them.

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