It's 2:46 AM on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, depending on what type of person you are. Me, I'm a Tuesday night guy, but I know there are people out there who would view this 2:46 AM as Wednesday morning. That's fine, but that's a discussion for a whole other post and day. It is somewhat relevant though as for some of the NBA and NHL teams out there 2:46 AM signifies just two hours and forty-five minutes after the free agent period starts and that means butting heads on negotiations and hopefully giving fans of respective cities Christmas-like feelings when they wake up in the morning and see via however they get their news that their team signed a big name free agent. Well, that happens for the "It's 2:46 AM on Wednesday morning" guys who have to go to sleep because it's already morning and "boo hoo, I'm sweepy." For guys like me, a real man (with a little wee wee), I'm able to stay up and see these types of deals, or lack thereof, go down as they happen.
I must digress before you click away, if you haven't already.
Reportedly Marian Hossa has been offered anywhere from $3.75 million to $4 million per year to sign a long-term contract with the Detroit Red Wings. Ken Holland has insisted many times that the Wings can not break the bank with Hossa as they would have to cut ties with players they really cannot afford to lose. That being said, the Wings definitely want Hossa to resign. I mean, who wouldn't want a guy who averages a little over 30 goals a season and is just 2-years removed from having a 100 point season?
Remember, Hossa turned down big money from the runner up Pittsburgh Penguins a year ago to sign with the then Stanley Cup Champions, Detroit Red Wings because he had an insatiable appetite to win a Stanley Cup and the Red Wings, who paid him a little under $7.5 million this past season, were his best chance. At the time it was a lovable decision, unless you were a Penguins fan, one that any true sports fan has to respect: a player who doesn't care about more money and security (even though he was getting plenty of it) to try and accomplish his dream of winning the Stanley Cup.
Sure it can be looked at from the other side and argued that Hossa merely hopped onto the Wings bandwagon, but reality is he joined one of the best run organizations in hockey, turned down a lot of money to do so, and entered into a situation to achieve what I believe is all young hockey boys' dreams: to hold up that 35 1/4 pound silver plated cup at the end of the season and then bath your dog in it when it's your turn to keep it over the summer.
As everyone knows, the Wings lost to the Penguins in this year's Stanley Cup Finals which made Hossa an easy target for point and laugh jokes, kick-me signs, and photo shopped pictures of just about anything anti-Hossa. Hossa's disappearance from the NHL Finals this year made people wonder if the Red Wings would even consider re-signing him, but it was never thought that Hossa would jump ship yet again from a runner up team.
That seems to be exactly the case, though as he has reportedly turned down Detroit's latest offer. Although negotiations may continue to occur, if he ultimately does reject the Red Wings final, and not a penny more, offer then he will be negating every admirable thing he did a season ago (again aside from Penguins fans views) and put himself in another vulnerable position for school-boy-bitch-bashing. He'll be selling out not only by Red Wings standards, or Penguins standards for that matter, but selling out on his own standards. Just a year ago he didn't really care about money and wanted to win a Stanley Cup and now all he cares about is getting a better offer? Weak sauce.
The fact of the matter is, the Red Wings still provide Hossa with his best chance to win a Stanley Cup. Four Stanley Cups in the last 12-years is still the best in all of the NHL. Throw in that Ken Holland is probably the best GM in all of hockey and Mike Illitch will continue to do whatever it takes to make his Detroit teams winners, even if it means upping the $5 Hot and Ready pizzas to $10, it's a lock that Detroit possesses the best odds to win a Stanley Cup year in and year out.
So in my book, Hossa has only two options: stay loyal to a team for once in your life and finish the job he started a year ago when he signed with the Wings or sell out.
One decision comes with love from Hockeytown and anyone who respects the game of hockey and sports in general while the other decision comes with loads of Hossa and hummus hate (I'll always hate hummus).
I can tell you right now, I will no longer feel any sympathy for the man who has lost not one, but two Stanley Cups in a row. I will certainly not feel sorry for him if he leaves the Wings and they happen to beat his new team in next year's Finals. Wouldn't that be ironic?
Make the right decision, Marian. Re-sign with the Detroit Red Wings or "I will destroy you."