Saturday Morning as the Jets traded Steve Mason and Joel Armia to the Montreal Canadiens in an obvious effort to clear up cap space, it sure felt like it was a precursor to a Paul Stastny re-signing.
24 hours later, Paul Stastny signs a $6.5 million dollar deal for the next three years with the Vegas Golden Knights and Jets. It was likely a million more than the Jets could have afforded or maybe even more
If Paul Stastny was “plan A” for the Jets and that didn’t work out (and really it’s not all that bad that it didn’t), then “plan B” should be the Jets taking care of their own restricted free agents and that is one area where Kevin Cheveldayoff can’t afford to fail.
Tavares… Stastny… uhhhh.. Valtteri Filppula?
After John Tavares and Paul Stastny, this isn’t exactly a deep free agent pool overall and it’s especially short at the center position. Tyler Bozak and Tomas Plekanec may have been the next best options and they also appeared to be spoken for before the noon eastern time opening bell. Riley Nash and Valtteri Filppula may be the next best options and for some teams those players may be a boost to their top nine forward depth, there is little chance the Jets would or should look to add any of them.
The one hallmark of “Free Agent Frenzy Day” is that teams will overpay what market values should dictate. The Jets can’t afford to be part of that mess.
As it is, we could have a discussion of how they overpaid on Bryan Little or how unfortunate the Steve Mason contract turned out to be and how it possibly ended up costing them a controllable RFA in Joel Armia. Chevy certainly isn’t without his blemishes in terms of contracts handed out, but he not only would be wise to avoid doing so over the next day or two, but the Jets current cap situation may prevent him in doing so.
So what is “Plan B”?
The Jets are possibly looking to add a player or two to maybe help out with the Moose – think Michael Sgarbossa or Buddy Robinson – both were July 1 additions last year by the Jets that got a look but were all but tagged to go to the AHL the moment they signed. Expect a deal or two like that again this year but nothing else earth shattering. There simply isn’t any other option available – at least at forward and in the center position – in the free agent market that the Jets should even consider bringing in.
There is of course the matter of a backup goalie. There are a few options to be had there for the Jets as they look to keep Eric Comrie in the AHL for more development. Kevin Cheveldayoff also has plenty of work yet to do with Jacob Trouba and Connor Hellebuyck along with a somewhat long list of other restricted free agents.
#StastnyWatch was a fun little diversion for a little while, but now it’s time for the Jets to focus on taking care of matters internally – especially Trouba, Hellebuyck and Morrissey who ideally all get long term deals – in order to have what could be considered “a successful summer.”
Founded in 1950, Sports Excellence Corporation represents over 150 family-owned independent hockey retailers across Canada and the United States. Our highly knowledgeable hockey specialists are available to assist all your equipment needs. Find your closest Sports Excellence retailer here: Find a location near you!