Monday, January 7, 2008

How much is Brian Campbell worth

A lot of talk has been going around this season with the talks of Campbell's resigning for this year. Darcy has been dragging his feet again on this one and I think with good reason. The last offer that we have heard from the Campbell camp is for 5 years, $25 million. Is Brian Campbell worth $5 million a year. The only way to know is to compare his play to the play of those defenseman that are $5 million or more.

We start with Brian Campbell's stats from this year. Right now, through 40 games, he has 4 goals and 24 assists and also a +2. Being 28, he still has a healthy career seeing that many defenseman are playing up til their late 30's. His career stats are 31-130-161 with a -4. He has played on some bad Buffalo teams during that time. Also this season, he is the top scoring defenseman on the team.

The top paid defenseman in the league are as such: Nicolas Lidstrom ($7.6 million), Zdeno Chara ($7.5 million), Scott Niedermayer ($6.75 million), Ed Jovanovski ($6.5 million), Wade Redden ($6.5 million), Kimmo Timonen ($6.33 million), Chris Pronger ($6.25 million), Rob Blake ($6 million), Brian Rafalski ($6 million), Brian McCabe ($5.75 million), Andrei Markov ($5.75 million), Mathieu Schneider ($5.625 million), Roman Hamrlik ($5.5 million), Sheldon Souray ($5.4 million), Sergei Gonchar ($5 million), Pavel Kubina ($5 million).
Offensive Stats of Those Players
Lidstrom (4-36-40, +34)
Chara (6-20-26, +5)
Niedermayer (1-4-5, -2) *10 games
Jovanovski (3-22-25, -9)
Redden (5-20-25, +16)
Timonen (5-14-19, -9)
Pronger (8-23-31, E)
Blake (3-17-20, -7)
Rafalski (7-29-36, +16)
McCabe (4-8-12, -4)
Markov (10-19-29, -2)
Schneider (5-12-17, +7)
Hamrlik (3-14-17, +6)
Souray (2-6-8, -5)
Gonchar (7-25-32, -1)
Kubina (2-17-19, +4)

Comparing these stats, $5 million would be enough. But does $5 million work with the economics of the team. Right now, this team has a cap hit of $42 million. There are four players that are going to be Unrestricted Free Agents besides Campbell: Michael Ryan, Dmitri Kalinin, Teppo Numinen, and Jocelyn Thibault. Therefore, the Sabres have to sign at least two of those UFA defenseman because the youth pipeline cannot handle more. Ryan Miller also comes into play here as well. The all-star goalie's contract comes into play here because he is due for a big raise coming next year. If Campbell is signed for $5 million, is there going to be enough money to be able to pay Miller. Therefore, fans really have to make a choice here. Is it going to be Miller or Campbell because with the finances of this team, you could not have both at the prices that each is asking for.

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