Since when does a 13 goal, 60 point season merit a player to get a 7 year contract, the first year of which will pay 10 million dollars? How about 18 million in salary going out to 2 centers who combined, barley have more points than 19 year old MVP, Sidney Crosby did? Scott Gomez and Chris Drury were both signed by the New York Rangers to a very large, and equivalently long contract. Don’t get me wrong, I think they are both very skilled players and can be an asset to any team. But when players like Jarome Iginla and Joe Thornton sign contract extensions for about 7 million each, one really gains perspective on how lucky Gomez and Drury really are. If they can get contracts equivalent to that of a former 1st overall pick/ Hart trophy winner in Thornton, and the face of a franchise in Iginla, I am beginning to think the lockout was a waste of time.
Both of these players are arguably among the top 10 in the league right now, and are undoubtedly both better overall players than Drury or Gomez. Not only does this show certain team’s ability to overpay, but it also shows class and loyalty by players such as Iggy and Thornton. They could have easily tested the free market in the same way Gomez and Drury did, and probably could have fetched a larger contract. But they both stayed true to their teams who made them who they are. They put winning, friendship and loyalty in front of money.
I know there are many more examples of overpaying and pay cuts, but these are the most relevant in my mind right now. The only problem is that while the contracts signed by Iginla and Thornton are a step forward, unfortunately the Drury and Gomez signings are two giant steps backwards in the business of hockey.
This is not a blog to complain about high salaries, but rather to recognize the class and character of individuals who CLEARLY take less money than they could get in the open market.