Vanek Money?

When Peter Regin’s agent, Bjarne Madsen, spoke out to a Danish TV station and suggested that his client could be in line for an offer sheet similar to the $50- million deal that the Sabres’ Thomas Vanek received in 2007 from the Edmonton Oilers, my first reaction was to make the Chris Neil Penalty Face. You know, the one that combines confusion and pain as one tries to overcome the mental anguish that comes with trying to wrap your head around the idea. Granted, I was trying to figure out how silly Bjarne Madsen could secure a Vanek-like offer sheet when Kevin Lowe is no longer allowed behind the wheel of a NHL ship. Hell, I doubt that Glen Sather would be dumb enough to make that kind of move. (Even if he does bury Wade Redden in the minors for the duration of the 2010-11 season.)

Fortunately, after the CNPF and some subsequent laughter, my gut instinct kicked in. Although Regin had put together a respectable playoff performance against the Penguins in the first round and seemingly found some comfort on Ottawa’s first line alongside Jason Spezza, the Dane only posted a paltry 29 points in his rookie campaign. Albeit, it may have been the prettiest 29 point season in Senators history but players aren’t awarded strictly on the quality of their production. Regardless of how he scored, all his goals look the same on the team stats page or in the boxscores.

Even though he’s a promising young talent, Regin had no leverage in negotiations. The threat of playing overseas or signing an offer sheet never really existed. The threat of a Vanek’esque over was nothing more than a facade by an agent who was trying to create his own leverage. Maybe next time, he’ll aim lower by referencing David Backes.

According to the Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch (via Twitter), Regin’s contract is a two-year pact worth $950k in its first year and $1.050 in the second. For the mathematically challenged, that’s a $1 million dollar cap hit for a player who may continue to play leftwing on Ottawa’s first line. Not bad. Not bad at all… but hardly surprising.

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