Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Nazzy - Foppa - Bert : My Pipe Dream

There are plenty of rumors in the media (both blog and mainstream media) about how Markus Naslund and Peter Forsberg would like to play on the same team this coming season. While these rumors usually both players signing with every other team but Vancouver, it's hard not to think of the possibility of both of them donning the Canucks jersey.

Imagine a first line of Naslund - Forsberg - Bertuzzi.

Or a first line of Naslund - Morrison - Bertuzzi and a second line of Sedin - Sedin - Forsberg.

Or a first line of Naslund - Morrison - Forsberg and a second line of Sedin - Sedin - Bertuzzi.

Well, you get the idea.

But is this a realistic scenario? Last week, I stepped in Dave Nonis' shoes and put together a roster with approximately $2.7 million of cap space left. I also estimated Naslund's salary to come in at $6.5 million.

If Naslund and Forsberg decide to package themselves together, they have to realistically expect to take a pay cut. In the new NHL, teams will no longer be able to commit a significant percentage of their salary cap to only two players no matter how good those players are. Well, they could, but they would be surrounded by a bunch of minor-leaguers.

With the salary rollback, Naslund would have made $4.3 miilion last season. So what if... the Canucks offer Naslund and Forsberg that same contract for a combined $8.6 million? Will that be enough to entice the dynamic duo?

Of course it's not that simple. And I'm sure it would require the Canucks to be a bit more creative. (Let's face it, the Canucks also need to upgrade in other areas.) But nevertheless, Nazzy, Foppa and Bert on the Canucks 1st line. It's a nice pipe dream.
posted by J.J. Guerrero, 5:45 PM


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