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Fedorov to Russia Not a Done Deal

Hello everyone. I'm just back from covering the Indy 500 and getting back up to speed on all things Caps today.

TSN.ca and Sport-Express are reporting that Sergei Fedorov is close to signing a two-year deal with Metallurg Magnitogorsk of the KHL. The deal, according to the reports, is for $3.8 million per season over two seasons.

While that may indeed happen, I was just told moments ago by someone in the Fedorov camp that the 39-year-old veteran still has interest in playing for Washington next season. But for Fedorov to return to the Caps, I was told via text message, "a decision has to be made soon by Wash."

Fedorov made $4 million on a one-year contract this season.

I've also put in a call to GM George McPhee. So stay tuned.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  May 26, 2009; 9:33 AM ET
 
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Comments

I don't see how in the world the Caps can commit that kind of money. We already have Nylander, Clark and Theo contracts to deal with. Feds missed quite a bit of time and looked all of 39 in the playoffs. I could see maybe as much as $3M for one year, since the Backstrom and Semin extensions don't kick in until 2010-11. You know Feds wants to play because of his stated goal of playing in the Olympics. The problem is, unless Nylander makes a dramatic recovery, the team has no #2 center for next year.

Posted by: tominfl1 | May 26, 2009 9:57 AM | Report abuse

there are also reports that he is going t be playing with his brothers and that could effect the decision. Isn't sports express the paer that sent a reporter over to cover OV and isnt that the same paper that blogged with you Tarik? It just seems like that would make it a little more credible if that was indeed the case.

Posted by: lamplighter1 | May 26, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

No use in getting into a bidding war with a limited amount of cap space. I'd love to see Feds back for 1-2 mil for a year, but not at nearly 4 mil for 2 years. He is a great lockerroom presence and leader for the youth, but someone can step up from Hershey or even Nyles can work on playing the Caps system -- or finding a trade for someone who will. Desperation contracts just aren't a good idea.

Posted by: JIMALLCAPS | May 26, 2009 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Not a huge fan of anywhere above 3mil for Feds but the bottom line is we need an established 2nd line center and Nyles doesn't even fit the system, at all. If Feds needs that kind of cash we need to hit the FA market.

Posted by: rh71 | May 26, 2009 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Anything over $2 million/year would be unsettling. Love Feds though.

Posted by: Fro_ | May 26, 2009 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Whether Feds stays here or ends up in Russia, I am at least happy that a decision seems like it will be made in the near future. Therefore if he does leave, we know before the draft and July 1st so the appropriate moves can be made.

Posted by: ThePat | May 26, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

i personally think it might be an agents ploy to try and up the ante for a 39 year old. he knows we need ferdorov's presence in our locker room of russians. i imagine that he is back here somewhere in the neighborhood of 2.5 per season.

Posted by: carsonspence | May 26, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

here is the problem though, he is not a second line center anymore on a nightly basis. He is more of a power play and penalty kill specialists. Paying anymore then $2mil for someone who is going to play limited 5on5 minutes is not smart cap management. Maybe next season is finally the time to give one or two of the Bears guys a chance to stick

Posted by: UMWHockey | May 26, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

@ SA-Town

I think they will make a move in FA on Cammalleri if we can move Nylander's contract at the draft. He knows the system already so it would be a nice fit.

Posted by: ThePat | May 26, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

The reports are that he is "close" to signing a deal. That part seems to correct. But I'm hearing he's waiting for a counteroffer from the Caps.

--Tarik

Posted by: el_bashir | May 26, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

I would love to see Feds back as the elder statesman for the young Caps, but not for more than $2 million.

Still, it is difficult to think of him playing in Russia after he's been such a fixture of North American hockey.

Posted by: pstenigma | May 26, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, Tarik.

Will KHL become a "Seniors Tour"?

Posted by: uncatim | May 26, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Before making the decision, I hope that GMGM takes into account that the influnce he has brought to the room for the young Russians is, "Lets go drink and goof around till 4:00am!" While I love and respect the player, off the ice he actually sets a bad example for the younger guys. I've seen it...sheez....I enabled it, on a first hand basis. He is not the missing piece that the team needs to go to the next level, and out of the room, he is a distraction and didnt show the boys the discipline and character needed to show up and play lights out every night.

Posted by: lamplighter1 | May 26, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

I don't doubt that Fedorov (a noted womanizer and well known party guy) is out unil 4 am. But I also see that Semin has done a 180 in the effort department since Fedorov came to town. (please spare me the, where was he against Pittsbrgh?! He could barely hold his stick, and the refs decided to let Orpik draw blood, quite literally, without penalty)

Posted by: RedBirdie | May 26, 2009 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Tarik,

Heard on HTM on XM radio about this, they said the deal was for $3.8M for two years and a decision was pending over the next 2 weeks. Obviously that 2 weeks period would be the time that GMGM and Feds rep are going to be talking.

Nyls please retire

Posted by: caps28fan | May 26, 2009 10:59 AM | Report abuse

And let's not forget that the Salary Cap is shrinking by $2,5 Millions right this next season. I don't think that Feds will get an offer from GMGM. I don't see him getting more than $2M for 1 year (as opposed to $7.8M over two years in the KHL)... that is a differential of $5.8M. Feds loves the Caps but he will love the KHL money more....

Posted by: atybat | May 26, 2009 10:59 AM | Report abuse

@atybat

Where have you seen a number for the salary cap for next season??

Posted by: ThePat | May 26, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

As usual many of your are overreacting and overreaching with this. The Caps need not sign Fedorov to a two year contract to keep him. They need not sign him to a base salary of $4m ish to keep him.

To keep him they need to offer a one year deal with a base salary in the $2.5-3.0m with the rest in bonuses such as games played. That helps the Caps if he misses as many games as last season.

Bottom line is that no Hershey grad like Bourque is going to replace a hall of famer who is the only player on the current roster who has won the cup. The Caps need more of that experience, not less.

Posted by: txpd | May 26, 2009 11:03 AM | Report abuse

I heard the salary cap is not going down for 2009-2010. It will stay flat. The NHLPA will apply their inflator thinger majiggy to prevent the cap from falling (the details escape me)

The real concern is the 2010-2011 season.

Posted by: RedBirdie | May 26, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

@redbirdie

That is what I thought as well. And I also thought the bonus cushion is back in effect for this season, which of course would be stupid to use since you'd have to get that much under the cap the following season when it comes down.

Posted by: ThePat | May 26, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Feds should suck it up and play for 1.5 mil for one year here. If he wants to win the cup here, he should open up some cash for the team in the short term.

We cant afford to have him tie up money and be injured again. Our goals for next year is to win the east in the regular season..and get to the Stanley Cup...the lineup top to bottom, including distribution on money has got to be solid...You got to hope McPhee wont sit on his hands again at the deadline next year either...

Posted by: SA-Town | May 26, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

The CBA was agreed upon to extend one year until 2010/11. Then the cap likely will go down. The groups have to meet next year about it to decide what to do.

Posted by: caps28fan | May 26, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

If you go to Japer's, there's a link to a Newark paper story that says next season's cap could go down a couple of million (not likely that drastic with the inflator), but the real looming question is the 2010-11 season's cap.

Posted by: koalatek | May 26, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

I love Feds and agree with both sides of the arguments here. I agree with people's points that say we need to let Federov go because of old age, money, etc. However, I also agree with some of the points that say we need his experience, leadership, etc. I think though, as much as I like Federov it's best if we let him go. Federov looks slower and slower as the year goes on. Federov is versatile but this year you rarely saw him on the PK. Also, I know he can play defense but with the many young defenseman we have down in Hershey we don't really need him to step up and try to play defense if someone goes down. Lastly, Federov just isn't a scoring threat anymore. I know he had the game winner in game 7 vs NYR but other than that he doesn't look to shoot anymore. Federov looks to pass way to much and the rare occassions I saw Feds on a breakaway this year he didn't finish. I love what this guy gave us the past 2 years but he missed a lot of time this year due to injury and he's getting slower and slower. I don't think Feds can handle a full NHL Season anymore and I think another year is only going to make him more injury prone. I have the upmost respect for Feds; he is a HOF and back in the day he was arguably the best player in the NHL at one time. However, he turns 40 next year and he really isn't a top 2 line center anymore. I say save the money and try to make a move for someone or sign a FA.

Regardless, of what happens good luck to Feds! If we sign him, I truly wouldn't be disappointed in that decision at all.

Posted by: DCSportsFan28 | May 26, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Where does the situation stand on Koslov, is he gone?

Posted by: kcbrichmond | May 26, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

I'm in agreement with everybody, anything north of $2.5M for 1 year is way too steep for a 39/40 yr old that should only play 15 min per game. Love Fedorov, he should take his tax free offer for 7.6M and play if Russia.

Options (in house)
Aucoin - could be promoted. He could play 2nd team minutes. But I'm sure some people in here will be watching his every move under a microscope.

Nylander - sigh

Laich - Look, I love this guy but he just a playmaker. He belongs on the wing with a C with vision. He does everything a C should except make plays.

Kozlov - resign Kozzy, let him take Semin and Flash at his sides.

Options (out house)

Cammalleri - he will be expensive, but his play is probably worth it. 1% chance we make a serious play for him.

Hurdler - he's a RFA, but this will all depend on what DET does with Hossa. Hurdler would fit in nice on the 2nd line.

Montreal - Higgins, Plekanec, Koivu and Lang all play C, could all play 2nd line for us. If the rumors are true about Vinny heading north, I expect Higgins to be part of the deal.

Trade possibilities...

Ya right, like I have that much time.

(voice in JSchon's head) You do have that much time... You know you want to do it...

Robert Nilsson for Michael Neuvirth + Chris Bourque.

Edmonton needs goaltending. Nilsson is young C, nice contract.

Posted by: JSchon | May 26, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

koalatek, that's what I recall as well. That without the NHLPA inflator, the cap will come down, but the NHLPA has already said they will apply it so the cap stays flat next season. Its in the player union's best interest that the cap remain high.

Posted by: RedBirdie | May 26, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

So Feds is too old to play full minutes, but Lang isn't?

Um, okay.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 26, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

@atybat

Where have you seen a number for the salary cap for next season??

Posted by: ThePat | May 26, 2009 11:02 AM |

He googled it, just like everyone else.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 26, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

atybat, shouldn't you know all about the Feds deal going down?

Or is it just Nylander you know about?

You never answered my question about Backstrom's house in Gavle either. How many lawn gnomes? You know that right?

Posted by: richmondphil | May 26, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Lang had 39 points in 50 games before he got hurt. Lang was MTL's best C at the time.

Posted by: JSchon | May 26, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

word among the Detroit hardcore is that Ken Holland's first priority is Hudler, then Hossa. You know how Detroit is about their "own" people (well, kinda like Bruce. Loyal to a fault, almost).

I can't imagine the shock coming from Detroit with Mike "I'm going to leap over this podium and strangle you because I don't like your question" Babcock to Washington and their teddy bear of a coach. (did anyone else see Babby's press conference, complete with interperative dance, between games 3 and 4? Hilarious)

Posted by: RedBirdie | May 26, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

That doesnt surprise me with Hurdler. The guy is instant offense.

Posted by: JSchon | May 26, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Lang had 39 points in 50 games before he got hurt. Lang was MTL's best C at the time.

Posted by: JSchon | May 26, 2009 11:23 AM |

And Feds had 33 in 52 games.

Lang is more injury prone and only a year younger. I am failing to see the desire for him.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 26, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

There is no desire from me for him. I mentioned his name in the lot that is MTL's long list of FA C's.

Posted by: JSchon | May 26, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

oday's mind blower: Nick Lidstrom is 39 as well.

Plays like he's 29, though. Absolutely nuts.

Posted by: RedBirdie | May 26, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Defenders get a little bit of a break, what without having to back or fore check and all. D men will usually play a few more years than forwards.

Chelios is insane.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 26, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

There is no desire from me for him. I mentioned his name in the lot that is MTL's long list of FA C's.

Posted by: JSchon | May 26, 2009 11:29 AM |

I just don't see Lang being that effective as a 2nd line centerman, especially for us. We need someone who plays their position well and is fast. preferably much younger than of the feds/lang mold.

Posted by: richmondphil | May 26, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

@ThePat

Regarding the salary Cap. This info came from Daly, the assistant to Bettman. But, as mentioned by someone else, the NHLPA can apply an inflator. Then, the Cap would remain relatively flat.

@RichmondDumbo
Dunno about gnomes but you are quite the Troll. You are now officially put on ignore.

Posted by: atybat | May 26, 2009 11:35 AM | Report abuse

I thought the trade for Fedorov was a great move and I was all for bringing him back again last year. His experience in the locker room was invaluable. I'm now for letting him walk unless he is willing to sign at a significantly lower salary which means nowhere near the offer he has in Russia. We'll obviously need to find a #2 center to play with Semin but for what we get Fedorov is way overpriced.

Posted by: ouvan59 | May 26, 2009 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Yeah but my source of a source of a source of a source tells me Nylander's house has 6 bathrooms.

confirm/deny

Posted by: richmondphil | May 26, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

somehow, none of have commented on the best part of the post: "I've also put in a call to GM George McPhee. So stay tuned."

because whatever GMGM says is always the opposite of what he plans, right? (no, seriously, I find that understanding the tru meaning of what GMGM says to be akin to translating long lost languages. Intersting and enlightening at times, but occassionally prone to making me want to drive my head into a brick wall. repeatedly)

Posted by: RedBirdie | May 26, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Robert Nilsson for Michael Neuvirth + Chris Bourque.

Edmonton needs goaltending. Nilsson is young C, nice contract.


Posted by: JSchon | May 26, 2009 11:16 AM

I may not have seen Nilsson enough to form a complete picture but he seems to be the picture of soft to me. Not sure what he brings to the table more than Nylander.

Posted by: ouvan59 | May 26, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

At most I'd match for one season but not two. If it looks like someone else is available I'd drop him and use the salary elsewhere.

Posted by: Stu_c | May 26, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Looks like the KHL is becoming the NASL of hockey.

Love what Feds did for the team these past two years, but he really did show his age this year. Still, he played with a lot of heart and it is appreciated. I'd like to see him coach over here in the NHL, or work in the front office. (Would love to see him replace Colin Campbell!)

But I think the Caps can only offer him one more year, and for less than 3 mil. He's just too much of a cap hit, otherwise.

I'm thinking - if we can sign him for another year - that Koz can return to center. We've got players on the farm that can help out on the wings. Perhaps we make a trade this offseason to pick up a solid, mobile, checking forward.


Posted by: WritingLight | May 26, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I think Feds "showing his age" is a direct result of that ankle injury. He's never had a major injury before and it was apparent that he kept trying to get back on the ice before it was fully healed, and even healed, those high ankle injuries are an absolute nightmare. Obviously, his age would ahve something to do with his ability to come back from injury, but his production prior to injury was on-par, as I remember, and even if you take his season totals from the 52 games he played and estimated what that would have been over 82 games, it would have been a significant contribution.

Posted by: RedBirdie | May 26, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

I'm a fan of Fedorov. There's no way in hell I'd pay $4M for what he has left in the tank. I wonder who's more intrigued by KHL offer sheets, Fedorov or Semin...

Posted by: redlineblue | May 26, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I can't see the Caps offering Feds anything but a one year deal given that he'll be 40 later this year and he is more of a specialist on the PP and PK than a No. 2 center. His age started to show in the playoffs when going against younger, stronger skaters and paying him more than $3M per year would be a panic move.

My memory of the negotiations to bring back Peter Bondra (who definitely want to end his career here) was that GMGM offered him a one-year deal only. Bondra wanted the security of a two-year deal and signed elsewhere. In the long-run, McPhee made the right call on an older player. I'd like to Feds back but at the right price or move to Plan B and sign a FA center.

Posted by: wizfan89 | May 26, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Here is the laugh of the day. Replace Hall of Famer and the only player on the team with a stanley cup ring(3) with Keith Aucoin.

Posted by: txpd | May 26, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Replace Feds with Aucoin, Kozlov or Nylander as #2 center - that is insane. 2 of those 3 will never be a legit #2 center, and BB doesn't like the 3rd.

Cammalieri (sp?) has wheels - but there's a reason he's available. He ain't a playmaker.

Posted by: govtimbo | May 26, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

I, for one, hope Feds returns to DC.

The salary cap -- and Feds' own salary expectations -- are indeed issues, but I think he may stay IF management simply shows a desire to keep him. I don't think the $$$ are Numero Uno with Feds at this point in his career.

And yes, I agree he's not the Feds of yester-year. But he still handles the puck well, especially in his own end -- where this team NEEDS a lot of help! -- and he still has a solid, accurate shot. That goal vs the Rangers in Game 7 was proof of the pudding on the latter. I'd like to see the Caps use him primarily on "D" -- and especially on the PK!

Living in an AHL city -- Manchester, NH -- where BB coached the Monarchs (LA Kings affiliate) for 4 seasons before heading to Chocolatetown in PA, I can tell you that GREAT AHL players do not necessarily become great NHL players. I love the fact that the Caps are deep with good young talent at Hershey and South Carolina. But will they all be superstars in the NHL? Odds are that maybe 1 in 15-20 will be.

There simply is no replacement for the skill level of veteran NHL players, not to mention their leadership abilities.

As for free agancy, the Caps seeking a guy like Cammalleri makes good sense. Fact is, Cammalleri played and starred for BB here in Manchester for three seasons before being promoted to the Kings -- and last year starring for Calgary. BB and Cammalleri know each other very well from those days they worked together with the Manchester Monarchs.

Now, if only BB could coax some other ex-Monarchs' players he coached during his days in Manchester -- such as blueliner Joe Corvo of the Carolina Hurricanes and Patrick O'Sullivan of the LA Kings -- to play for him again in DC?!?

Posted by: kbengler57 | May 26, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

cammalieri is nice, but is not the type of player we need to spend the most on in Free agency. We need a top level shut down defenseman. My vote would be for Komisarek from MTL rather than Bouwmeester (FLA).


Obviously need another center...but i think fedorov will be back for around $2m either way.

Posted by: carsonspence | May 26, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

If we lose Feds and Kozlov, but especially if we lose Feds, we will lose Semin.

This is really bad...

Серега - нас не бросай!

Posted by: heathj82 | May 26, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Federov is slow as dirt and missed many games this year....ba-bye!

Dudes were skating around him in the playoffs and the #1 reason he was brought here was for his PP experience. If he's stationary he can still play, otherwise he's a liability. The Caps were one of the best PP teams this past season, I honestly see no need for him to be re-signed at this point.

The Caps need defense in the worst way, not an old aging vet whose best days are far behind him.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | May 26, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

But Semin would still have Ov and Varly here, even if Feds and Kozzie leave. What the heck, man! =P

Posted by: LeftCoastCapsFan | May 26, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Agreed we can't afford to lose Semin - and ask Ovie just how much Feds' presence means to them both, but esp. Semin. That's worth something.

Camillierie's a nice player, but he ain't a #2 center on a contending NHL team, sorry.

And the odds of a great AHL player becoming an NHL superstar are waaaaaaaaaay lower than 1-15, esp. for a forward. Try 1 in 100, maybe - if you're talking superstar, anyway.

It's a big jump to the next level, and not everyone makes it. Ask BB.

Posted by: govtimbo | May 26, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Hey govtimbo, I was being extreeeeemely nice -- and I'm not disagreeing with you when you said:

"And the odds of a great AHL player becoming an NHL superstar are waaaaaaaaaay lower than 1-15, esp. for a forward. Try 1 in 100, maybe - if you're talking superstar, anyway."

With Varly's play in the playoffs, and Neuvirth's play in Hershey, I would hope we can stop talking about the need for a goaltender. We have 'em in those two budding stars!

But they need lotsa help in front of them!

As an example, can't anybody get the puck away from Pittsburgh when they're in the "O"-zone anymore?

Watching the Pens-Canes series is like watching a replay of the final 3-4 games of the Caps-Pens series! The Canes, who've been playing very well down the stretch and thru the first two rounds of the playoffs, can't get the puck out of their end of the rink vs. Pittsburgh either!

The Caps need their young up-from-Hershey scorers like Fehr, Fleischmann, Laich, A. Giroux, Bourque, Mink, Aucoin and others to start getting it done on the 2nd and 3rd lines ... and with much more regularity. I, for one, have not given up on that from this core group of AHL-ers.

But we need a few true veteran stay-at-home "junk yard dog" types that won't get rattled when the pressure's on in our end. Can we call the "Secretary of Defense" -- our 'ol #5 -- out of retirement???

Posted by: kbengler57 | May 26, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

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