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Saturday, March 19, 2011

What to do with Tom Poti?

The consensus is that George McPhee did a good job at the trade deadline. For the most part, we like Arnott, Sturm, and Wideman.  And for now, our dear love/hate GMGM is off the hot seat.

But since I have bouts of negativity, I must rain on Georgie's parade.  We must remind ourselves that Tom Poti was given a 2-year extension (through 2012-13) at the beginning of the season.


Poti, who turns 34 on Tuesday (March 22nd), has only played in 21 games this season ( because of a nagging groin injury.  Per the beat reporters he is still listed as week-to-week, but hopes to return during the current road trip.  

So maybe he comes back and contributes, maybe he doesn't.  Don't worry about this season for now.  Just focus on the following two seasons -- the part covered by his extension.  

My opinion in the summer of 2010 was that I wanted to evaluate how Poti performed this season before deciding whether or not to extend him.  

Especially given the eye injury he suffered in the Montreal series last year, I thought it was very premature to give him an extension before this season started.

Now, to date, this season has pretty much been a wash because of his time lost to injury.  Maybe he comes back fine and has 2 more years left in the tank, thus proving I am too negative of a human being.

Realistically though, I have this thought that it will become apparent very quickly that the 2-year extension was a mistake (even if he finishes this season strong).  

His cap hit will be $2.875 million per season over the next two years.  Not deadly. But, in my mind, not worth the price.

While this is still a low-budget blog and I don't have a poll yet, certainly feel free to comment.

What do you think will happen to Tom Poti over the next two years?

A.  The Caps will find a way to trade him because GMGM is slick like that

B.  He will wind up on LTIR for the bulk of/all of the next two seasons 
(gets paid his salary, doesn't play, doesn't count against cap)

C.  He will recover his health, but the Caps will bury him in the minors 
(gets paid his salary, plays in the AHL, doesn't count against cap)

D.  He will be bought out summer 2011 
(cap hits of:  $833,333, $1.08 Million, $958,333, and $958,333 starting in '11-'12 campaign plus the Caps would pay him $3.83 Million to buy him out ***see below for detail)

E.  Tom Poti will play out the two years.  Everything will be fine.  The Caps Degenerate is being way too hard on Mr. Poti.  He might even score the GWG in the Cup clinching game further highlighting why we don't listen to the Caps Degenerate.

I see him spending two years in the AHL (loaned as opposed to Hershey?). Hannan becomes a UFA at the end of this season and I'd like to see him back for a year. Alzner becomes a RFA at season's end and obviously he needs to come back. That would give us 8 defenseman without Poti and quite frankly I don't miss Tom Poti!

Buying him out would involve too much of a cap commitment (years, not $ per year). So given that Michael Nylander comes off the books finally, we've got our "slush fund" back for burying people in the AHL. Think of Tom Poti as an easier to handle Michael Nylander!

That's my opinion.  What do you think?  

*** The way I calculated Tom Poti's buyout.  I'm new so feel free to correct.....

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