Why Giving Pekka Rinne A Huge Contract Was A Bad Idea

Jonathan Willis
November 03 2011 02:30PM

The Nashville Predators made waves on Thursday by signing Pekka Rinne to a seven year, $49-million contract. It is the largest contract in the history of one of the NHL’s smallest markets, and it instantly establishes Rinne as the cornerstone for the team for most of the next decade.

Insofar as the deal shows that the Predators’ ownership is serious about building on last season’s successes, this contract does a good job. It shows the team is willing to expend serious money to keep players that it values. Given that the club was facing the possibility of losing a trio of cornerstone players (Rinne, Shea Weber and Ryan Suter) this is a message that will undoubtedly be received appreciatively by the team’s fans.

Unfortunately, the deal also sends two other messages. First, it shows that one of the league’s most financially cautious clubs hasn’t learned the lessons of the last few seasons, where goaltending performance has fluctuated wildly and competent goaltenders can be had for close to nothing on the free agent market. It also shows a fundamental misunderstanding of how goaltending save percentage should be considered. We’ll start with the second point.

Goaltenders make the bulk of their saves in one of two situations: at even-strength, or while their team is on the penalty kill. Even-strength save percentage can vary significantly, but it is shorthanded save percentage that truly jumps around – a goaltender can go from posting an elite save percentage one year to a terrible one the next. This makes sense given that team performance on the penalty kill tends to vary widely depending on both coaching and personnel; the loss of two players can turn a club’s penalty-killing upside down. It also makes sense when we consider the small number of shots involved – a goalie making over 1000 saves at even-strength might make less than 200 on the penalty kill.

Pekka Rinne’s career penalty-killing save percentage numbers are as follows:

  • 2008-09: 163 saves on 188 shots – 0.867 SV%
  • 2009-10: 193 saves on 231 shots – 0.835 SV%
  • 2010-11: 270 saves on 296 shots – 0.912 SV%
  • Career: 637 saves on 726 shots – 0.877 SV%

Last season’s number on the penalty kill is significantly better than in Rinne’s previous two years, and well above the league average.

History shows us that Rinne isn’t the first starting goaltender to post a shorthanded save percentage above 0.900. Four players managed it in 2009-10, three in 2008-09, three in 2007-08 and five in 2006-07. Let’s look at the list, and see how those players did in the preceding and following seasons.

Player 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11
Brian Elliott --- --- 0.812 0.904 0.858
Chris Mason 0.921 0.854 0.885 0.899 0.820
Cristobal Huet 0.907 0.870 0.883 0.886 ---
Dan Ellis --- 0.918 0.831 0.843 0.856
Henrik Lundqvist 0.878 0.871 0.913 0.883 0.873
Jimmy Howard --- --- --- 0.905 0.875
Martin Brodeur 0.904 0.893 0.848 0.866 0.862
Mathieu Garon 0.859 0.908 0.821 0.891 0.855
Nicklas Backstrom 0.913 0.905 0.918 0.880 0.859
Roberto Luongo 0.906 0.872 0.858 0.860 0.897
Ryan Miller 0.846 0.866 0.879 0.919 0.886
Tim Thomas 0.846 0.871 0.905 0.919 0.889

With two exceptions, every player on that list was one-and-done when it came to posting a 0.900 SV% or better while their team was shorthanded. This holds true not just for lower-tier starters, but also for the high-end guys. Ryan Miller won a Vezina on the back of his penalty-killing save percentage in 2009-10, but he regressed to a number more in line with his career totals in 2010-11 – a regression that was entirely predictable. It was a similar story for some of the best goaltenders in the game – guys like Brodeur, Lundqvist, and Luongo – they all had a single season to shine before crashing back down to more realistic totals.

The two exceptions to this pattern are Tim Thomas and Nicklas Backstrom – Thomas had a two-year run while Backstrom had three years with a save percentage above 0.900 on the penalty-kill. Backstrom’s run left town with Jacques Lemaire while Thomas saw his numbers decline a bit last season.

Interestingly, Nashville has seen this happen before – Chris Mason and Dan Ellis both had brief runs as the Predators’ starter, mostly thanks to a strong penalty-killing save percentage. Then they lost the top job when the numbers while shorthanded went the other way. The Predators clearly didn’t pick up on exactly what happened in those two cases.

Given Rinne’s history – two less than stellar years on the penalty-kill, followed by a brilliant performance in 2010-11 – and given what we’ve seen from high-end performers like Lundqvist and Miller, does it make sense to bet on Rinne repeating his performance? Does it make sense to wager on it continuing for the duration of his seven-year contract? No, it doesn’t.

It’s a particularly baffling decision on the Predators’ part given what the goaltending market has looked like the last few years. Pekka Rinne’s current $3.4 million cap hit ranks him 17th among NHL goaltenders – right about average, in other words. Nobody currently makes $7.0 million – we’ve seen high-end guys like Bryzgalov, Luongo and Thomas all sign in the $5.0 - $5.7 million range. For capable but unspectacular starters, the record is even worse; they’ve been going in the $1.0 - $3.0 million range. We’ve even seen some unbelievable bargains, like the Capitals inking Tomas Vokoun to a one-year $1.5 million contract.

This isn’t to say Rinne will implode, or anything like that. In two previous years he’s been an average to slightly above average NHL starter. That’s probably the range he’ll stay in for the duration of his contract.

Unfortunately, that’s simply not good enough for the Predators. They can’t spend to the salary cap maximum, so their dollars are even more dear than they are for most teams, and spending so extravagantly on a good but not elite goaltender may cost them other key pieces.

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#1 stevezie
November 03 2011, 02:38PM
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Yeah. Stunned is maybe an overstatement, but barely. Seven years? On a goalie? At seven million? Oh boy, I would not have done that if I were you.

If Rinne isn't a Vezina finalist every year he is overpaid.

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#2 Jerk Store
November 03 2011, 04:44PM
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Willis, why don't you grab a clue. This signing is reasonable and just.

Sincerely,

R. DiPietro

R. Luongo

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#3 CooCoo
November 03 2011, 03:09PM
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Nashville is high! Get Weber!

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#4 T&A4Flames
November 03 2011, 02:43PM
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Yea, pretty dumb move on the Preds part. Rinne is awesome but seriously, for any team especially when you're a budget team....$7mil. on a goalie?

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#5 Smokey
November 03 2011, 02:43PM
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I wonder if he sending a cut of his salary to Weber and Suter. Nashville's on crack..

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#6 MattL
November 03 2011, 03:07PM
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"The Predators clearly didn’t pick up on exactly what happened in those two cases."

Well, they didn't sign either of those guys to $7mil contracts, did they?

Maybe an overpayment of $1mil, but he's easily a $6mil goalie if you've watched him at all. It's not like his PK save% is the ONLY reason they signed him.

The only thing your stats suggest is that you don't know if they're a good goalie or not based on one statistic from one year. No kidding. He could either be Tim Thomas or Brian Elliot going by that statistic? Well great, maybe they evaluated more than just that one statistic before they signed him?

Maybe the future of their organization's ability to sign other FA's is WAYYYYY more important than that one statistic?

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#7 AnonymousAnchor
November 03 2011, 03:34PM
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"This isn’t to say Rinne will implode, or anything like that. In two previous years he’s been an average to slightly above average NHL starter. That’s probably the range he’ll stay in for the duration of his contract."

Whee. Your writing is based on what? 1 stat? Seems like you haven't really watched this guy at all.

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#8 ray
November 03 2011, 02:37PM
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absolutely ludicrous!!!

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#9 FastOil
November 03 2011, 02:45PM
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Looks like opportunity to me. Let's hope our guys are more clever, or read Willis.

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#10 bazmagoo
November 03 2011, 03:12PM
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Gagner, Whitney and a 2nd to Nashville for Weber - git er done!

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#11 Rain Dogs
November 03 2011, 03:17PM
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@T&A4Flames

takes a UFA out of the pool.... that's it.

@Jonathan Willis

While I don't completely disagree with the conclusion, using pksv% is off base. Who cares about pksv% and how it affects overall sv%? It's influence is so very slight no matter if it's .860 or .930. And average? I don't think people look up goalie stats.

Rinne's evsv% is a career .928 to date. There are only three goalies better: Vokoun - .930., Thomas - .930, Luongo - .,929. What's that you ask? What about Jonas Hiller (.930)? Yeah, talk to me in three years. Hiller hasn't seen enough ev shots - 4113 (compared to Vokoun's 10,302 since 03/04)

Oh... wait... but Rinne has only seen 3999 to date!

This is what everyone should be focusing on. Rinne hasn't done it long enough. It's true, he's got better evsv% than Price, Quick and Howard... but that's today. For example, his first ~4000 ev shots against in Calgary Kiprusoff was a .937 evsv% ... equivalent to Hasek! Since then, he's come down to Earth because that rate was unsustainable (to .925). The sample size is large enough with Rinne to give him a big contract and make him the franchise goalie, but it is not large enough sample to make him a $7mil/year goalie, highest paid in the league!

Was the contract a mistake? I wouldn't offer it, but let's see in four years. It's boatloads of money and if it hurts them signing Weber or Suter.... yikes. Plus, if Rinne is worth 7.... what is Weber worth?

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#12 Max Powers - Team HME Evans
November 03 2011, 03:23PM
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"They can’t spend to the salary cap maximum, so their dollars are even more dear than they are for most teams, and spending so extravagantly on a good but not elite goaltender may cost them other key pieces."

I disagree. I think Rinne is an elite, top 5 goaltender in the NHL. Just below a Lundqvist, Thomas and Luongo but better than a Backstrom or a Kipprusoff.

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#13 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
November 03 2011, 03:37PM
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So they would've been better off letting him walk?

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#14 Domebeers.com
November 03 2011, 03:45PM
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I dont understand you when you say "They can’t spend to the salary cap maximum"

Because it isn't true. It would be more accurate to say that Nashville chooses not to spend at the cap maximum, and the reason they do that is so they can still receive revenue sharing.

Here are Nashvilles owners: Christopher Cigarran, Thomas Cigarran, Joel and Holly Dobberpuhl, David Freeman, Herbert Fritch, DeWitt Thompson V, John Thompson & Warren Woo

Before one starts talking about how poor Nashville is, I'd suggest one take a look at what it is those gentlemen do for a living.

What this could be showing is the owners are willing to spend more money on the team/forgo receiving revenue sharing, which may imply they want to be a cap team. When Weber was being signed the coach there made it public that the team would match any offer sheet made, which, if true, is again another sign that the ownership group over there may be more inclined to spend money then they have been in the past.

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#15 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
November 03 2011, 03:48PM
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TSNBobMcKenzie Bob McKenzie

Maybe biggest story is NSH ownership obviously willing to be a max cap team next season. Closer to bottom in payroll this yr at about $50M

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#16 Wade
November 03 2011, 03:55PM
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1983 and This Year wrote:

Has Nashville realized that forwards are pretty much required on every shift? You can only stop so many goals against before you're eventually going to need a goal.

Nashville has made the playoffs 6 out of the last 7 years, so yeah, I think they understand how hockey works.

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#17 Randy
November 03 2011, 04:15PM
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With all due respect, Rinne is an elite goaltender. That said, this is a lousy contract. The Pred's didn't get any better today, and now they have less money available to do that. It's an average hockey team that is 2 more large contracts from insuring they stay average.

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#18 Robin Brownlee
November 03 2011, 04:21PM
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I don't like a seven-year contract for any player, particularly one who is 29, meaning it'll take him well past his prime years.

That aside, I think you're reaching by focusing on shorthanded saves percentage as the big hammer in your argument.

In my books, when you look at his body of work, Rinne rates among the top 5 of so starters in the league. He's a cornerstone kind of goaltender. In that context, the salary isn't out of line -- it's in the neighbourhood of a Ryan Miller or Henrik Lundqvist.

As for putting the Preds in a bind when it comes to locking down Suter, Weber and other required players, you might want to re-think that argument. Nashville's ownership is not without the ability to become bigger spenders and there are indications they intend to become exactly that.

Pete Webber of Nashville's play-play-play crew just told us today on Jason G's show the move is on to get Suter and Weber signed.

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#19 D'oh-ilers
November 03 2011, 04:26PM
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It's probably not the smartest move, considering they need to re-sign their two elite defensemen, but it shows they're loyal to their players, and willing to spend to build a winner. For the sake of their fans, I hope it doesn't backfire for them... although I wouldn't be at all upset if Edmonton got one of Suter or Weber.

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#20 godot10
November 03 2011, 05:14PM
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Nashville had no choice.

Without Rinne signed, they had zero chance signing Suter or Weber. All the advanced stats in the world don't matter.

And without one of Suter or Weber, the few fans Nashvile has would stop showing up.

In Willis's rotisserie league GM'ing, he can restrict the inputs to advanced stats. David Poile doesn't have that luxury. The franchise had to go all in on Rinne, or the franchise would be toast.

No Rinne. No chance at Suter. No Suter, no chance at Weber. No two of the three, no franchise. Simple arithmetic trumps advanced stats in this case.

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#21 Spydyr
November 03 2011, 05:24PM
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The Oilers cannot afford to sign Weber to a long term 6-7 Million dollar deal. They will need that cap space to pay the kids when their entry level contracts expire. Look what Stamkos just got 6 million on his second contract. None of the kids are scoring 50 yet but in the few Years the kid line will not come cheap.The Oilers have to develop the next 1-2 defencemen in house or deal Hemsky and or Gagner /Omark for a young 1-2 defencemen.Forget Weber he costs to much in cap space.

Departing note Vancouver has Lou signed for another 11 years.......big big smile.

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#23 Rain Dogs
November 04 2011, 09:15AM
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Two seperate issues here.

1. One ignores how good or bad Rinne is (he's very good btw). I don't think any team can/would offer him $7/year. Nashville overpaid... and did so early. Doesn't make sense to me.

2. How good is he? I understand Willis and his effort to show that Rinne's pksv% last year was an outlier, which pumps up his base sv%, but the effect is very slight.

Rinne's evsv% in '10-'11 was .932 (very, very elite).

His pksv% was high (an outlier) at .912.

His final sv% was incredible at .930.

Even if he allowed three more goals on the pk... massively dropping his pksv% to a high, but more "normal" .892 (a big difference in pksv%, but a slight move in overall sv% --- .928

four more pk goals GA = .888 pk sv% (15th of regular starters) and overall sv% = still .928

The idea that Rinne's pksv% was very high and an outlier is true, however, the idea that if it was more "normal" that he would somehow have given an average line of stats, is false.

He still would be second in overall sv% at .928 (tied with Luongo but with more shots against) even if his pksv% was .888 vs being .912 in '10-'11.

This further demonstrates why we should be looking at evsv% for our basic comparisons.

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#24 T&A4Flames
November 03 2011, 02:46PM
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Even if they decide it's time to start spending to the cap, I can't see how they keep Weber and Suter. Won't they feel they deserve something similar? That would be $21mil on 3 players, non of which are forwards that can score. At some point, they will have to consider that.

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#25 everton fc
November 03 2011, 02:46PM
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Perhaps Paul Fenton would consider leaving the organization now for the GM position in Calgary.?

Unless he actually authored this deal....

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#26 T&A4Flames
November 03 2011, 02:47PM
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What does this do for Kipper's trade value?

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#27 Kent Wilson
November 03 2011, 03:00PM
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@T&A4Flames

Not a thing I would imagine.

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#28 kyuss
November 03 2011, 03:00PM
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Oil should pull out cheque book for weber july 1 trade hemsky aka skating wounded

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#29 1983 and This Year
November 03 2011, 03:26PM
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Has Nashville realized that forwards are pretty much required on every shift? You can only stop so many goals against before you're eventually going to need a goal.

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#30 Rain Dogs
November 03 2011, 03:40PM
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@Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

Nope... they should have signed Weber first (if possible) and strong armed Rinne.

I don't think any other team offers Rinne 7 million. Not when Thomas makes 5, Luongo makes 5.3, Hiller makes 4.5 and Vokoun took 1.5.

What team has the cap space, need and budget to add a 7 million dollar goalie? I can't count one.

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#31 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
November 03 2011, 03:42PM
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Rain Dogs wrote:

Nope... they should have signed Weber first (if possible) and strong armed Rinne.

I don't think any other team offers Rinne 7 million. Not when Thomas makes 5, Luongo makes 5.3, Hiller makes 4.5 and Vokoun took 1.5.

What team has the cap space, need and budget to add a 7 million dollar goalie? I can't count one.

Well here's the problem, do we even know that they have a chance at signing Weber?

I don't like the contract, but I'm thinking NSH is kinda against the wall here. They already have issues with one of their top talents and they have another that is a UFA. Need to keep someone.

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#32 Matt Henderson
November 03 2011, 03:43PM
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Rinne is very good goalie, but 7 mill is rich. For that kind of dough you'd expect that he starts a Brodeur-like 70+ games, and wins in the Playoffs.

Rinne has only played more than 60 games once in his career. I like that he's good for about 7 shutouts a year, but I would need more games played during the season and in the spring before I commit that much money to a goalie.

I really like Rinne, but I cant believe he's making more than 6 million a season. I guess the Preds are thinking that the Cap is going to take a huge leap off the back of another Canadian franchise making big revenue.

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#33 RDS
November 03 2011, 03:44PM
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Rain Dogs wrote:

takes a UFA out of the pool.... that's it.

@Jonathan Willis

While I don't completely disagree with the conclusion, using pksv% is off base. Who cares about pksv% and how it affects overall sv%? It's influence is so very slight no matter if it's .860 or .930. And average? I don't think people look up goalie stats.

Rinne's evsv% is a career .928 to date. There are only three goalies better: Vokoun - .930., Thomas - .930, Luongo - .,929. What's that you ask? What about Jonas Hiller (.930)? Yeah, talk to me in three years. Hiller hasn't seen enough ev shots - 4113 (compared to Vokoun's 10,302 since 03/04)

Oh... wait... but Rinne has only seen 3999 to date!

This is what everyone should be focusing on. Rinne hasn't done it long enough. It's true, he's got better evsv% than Price, Quick and Howard... but that's today. For example, his first ~4000 ev shots against in Calgary Kiprusoff was a .937 evsv% ... equivalent to Hasek! Since then, he's come down to Earth because that rate was unsustainable (to .925). The sample size is large enough with Rinne to give him a big contract and make him the franchise goalie, but it is not large enough sample to make him a $7mil/year goalie, highest paid in the league!

Was the contract a mistake? I wouldn't offer it, but let's see in four years. It's boatloads of money and if it hurts them signing Weber or Suter.... yikes. Plus, if Rinne is worth 7.... what is Weber worth?

Isn't Luongo highest paid goalie in the league?

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#34 knee deep in it
November 03 2011, 03:51PM
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not sure if I agree with the premise of the article . Short handed save percentage seems like only one way to measure a goalie.

By every other measure, he is elite.

Last year, Nashville allowed 274 SH shots against. The difference in goals allowed by his career average SH SV% (0.870) and your line in the sand (0.900 Sv % ) is 8 goals per season.

As the author correctly predicted, he has fallen back to .877 but this is only going to make a difference of 6 goals if he were able to maintain an elite .900.

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#35 mayhemsince1977
November 03 2011, 04:09PM
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I do not understand this trend of signing a goalie to starter type contract until he is 40. Not everyone is Brodeur. Even Patrick Roy had to push to get to 36.

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#36 ?
November 03 2011, 05:27PM
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Too much term, too much salary. Rinne's a good goalie, but he's not that good.

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#37 Josh
November 03 2011, 05:32PM
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I think the argument that Rinne is an above average goalie is not giving Rinne his due credit. Granted he plays on a defensive first Nashville team but the guy was right behind Tim Thomas in all major statistical categories last season. If not for an unbelievable season from Thomas, Rinne probably would have won the Vezina. His save percentage hasn't been below .911 in his career and his GAA only as high as 2.53. Plus three straight seasons with 29+ wins. Those stats are comparable to Thomas and Luongo.

Not to say that Rinne deserves $7 million per season since both Thomas and Luongo have a cap hit of $5.3 million or less but lets at least give the guy the credit he deserves.

The contract also tells the players around him that the team is dedicated to winning in for the extended future and that should help convince guys to stay rather than look for a big payday elsewhere.

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#38 Robin Brownlee
November 03 2011, 05:35PM
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Jerk Store wrote:

Willis, why don't you grab a clue. This signing is reasonable and just.

Sincerely,

R. DiPietro

R. Luongo

Luongo -- 12-years DiPietro -- 15 years

Rinne -- 7 years

One of these is not like the others.

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#39 The Beaker
November 03 2011, 05:41PM
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godot10 wrote:

Nashville had no choice.

Without Rinne signed, they had zero chance signing Suter or Weber. All the advanced stats in the world don't matter.

And without one of Suter or Weber, the few fans Nashvile has would stop showing up.

In Willis's rotisserie league GM'ing, he can restrict the inputs to advanced stats. David Poile doesn't have that luxury. The franchise had to go all in on Rinne, or the franchise would be toast.

No Rinne. No chance at Suter. No Suter, no chance at Weber. No two of the three, no franchise. Simple arithmetic trumps advanced stats in this case.

This also sets a standard for the other two big names they are going to try and sign. Simple arithmetic would also dictate that on a team that spends ~50 mil a year spending ~19-21 mil on three players for the long term is not a good idea.

So yes, they had a choice.

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#40 Smokey
November 03 2011, 05:42PM
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Spyder, you can afford a Weber and pay the kids. You just make priorities. Chicago went through cap hell and lost some good talent on the cup run. But at the end of the day you choose your nucleus of 6-7 players, pay them an average of 5-6 mil and fill the rest of the team with role players and bargains. Washington, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Philly are doing this. Some point your nucleus changes and swap an older player for a younger player, but at the end of the day its manageable I believe. The Oilers need still have a defensemen or two to add and and a forward to add.

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#41 Jerk Store
November 03 2011, 06:21PM
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@Robin Brownlee

Fair enough but still takes a good player playing a risky position past a risky age. How many long term goalie signings have worked out? Not sure what Brodeur's longest contract was. Goalies shelf life is shorter than any other position. When they are good, they are very good. When they are bad ....

Fans lose patience and Managers lose jobs when this happens. Who knows though it may work. Poile / Ed Sullivan ... Er ... Barry Trotz are as safe as anyone.

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#42 Spydyr
November 03 2011, 06:50PM
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@ Smokey...I'm with you on needing a defencemen or two. For me it is just not Weber.He goes along the lines of a Hossa or Heatly.Searching for the great while whale.I would rather they traded for some young up and coming defencemen that can grow with the kids.You try for a Pronger or a Weber type player in a few years,when your ready to take a run at the cup.It is too soon for that IMO.

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#43 Smokey
November 03 2011, 07:09PM
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I'd personally take a shot at Weber as UFA next year. And if you get a guy like, I think you would be a contender. Weber is a defensemen that makes a team a contender for a long time.

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#44 ubermiguel
November 03 2011, 07:25PM
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Luongo's cap hit is only $5.3 mill. Rinne's not worth $1.7 mill more than Loungo to his respective franchise. And I find it odd it's $7 mill each year, not front loaded like Bryzgalov. Overpay him in 12/13 and save some cash for Suter and Weber.

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#45 justDOit
November 03 2011, 07:38PM
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@Robin Brownlee

All three are overpaid and on (relatively) long contracts.

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#46 justDOit
November 03 2011, 08:07PM
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Looks like the price for elite goalies is on the rise again, after Philly's offer for Bryzgotalotov. A big mistake, because with so many goalies coming out of nowhere for a while now, it's way more important to keep the stud D-men - of which, N'ville has TWO!

Defensive teams should refuse to pay any goalie more than $3M/yr. Trade em when they get too big for their britches and tell FAs to find some other wall of Weber/Suter (Stevens/Nied) to play behind, if they want more.

'Tenders who excel while playing behind an inferior defense should be the ones who make big $$$! Well, like Khabby, for instance. How many rookies or current AHLers has be played behind already?

Khabby should be making at least $7M this year, and he's signed for a reasonable $3.75! Almost half price! Can we afford NOT to trade him now with his value so high? For the benefit of the team's future?

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#47 Dog Train
November 03 2011, 09:29PM
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I read the first part of the article up until you started getting into the stats. Having not read that part, I agree that my first thought was that it was a mistake. From a publicity standpoint, it would have been hard to walk away from a guy like Rinne, but I would much rather have the horses on D than the the highly paid goaltender because goaltending can be so inconsistent.

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#48 Clyde Frog
November 03 2011, 09:39PM
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I dislike dumping that amount of cash in net, not that I don't like Rinne...

I think he is a pretty damn good goalie,just think that the extra 4 mil a season you pay in cap hit could buy back the goal differential and then some a goalie with a .911 versus a goalie with a .929 save % would have.

I just don't see a huge statistical difference between elite goalies and good ones. Yes its there, don't get me wrong. But it just doesn't warrant a 4-5 million difference in the end impact for the team.

You can argue mind set or they provide confidence for the team to do things they wouldn't otherwise in front of them. But again throwing that extra cash at upgrading really decent top 6 free-agent or top 3 defencemen just seems so much more sexy for me.

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#49 Bill Rizer
November 03 2011, 10:33PM
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I agree with the idea. I definitely agree signing to that term and that dollar value doesn't make sense. What I don't agree with is constantly shipping out players because they don't meet statistical criteria. At some point you gotta make a run with what you've got and I guess they figure that this is the time. I'd be ok with 3 or 4 years 7 million if that's the case though.

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#50 Wade
November 03 2011, 10:40PM
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And Pekka replies to your theory with a shutout tonight.

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