TRENTON, NJ - MAY 25: New Jersey Devils forward Zach Parise reads a book to young students during Zach Parise Reads to Students at the State Library on May 25, 2010 in Trenton, New Jersey. (Photo by Andy Marlin/Getty Images for the New Jersey Devils)
The Minneapolis Star-Tribune on Sunday had a fantastic look behind the curtain of NHL free agency, publishing an in-depth report on how Zach Parise and Ryan Suter both wound up signing with the Minnesota Wild.
It's worth every second of your attention that it requires, but in case you're only interested in how the Flyers played into the whole thing:
Suter and Parise spoke, and late Tuesday night [Wild GM Chuck] Fletcher got the call he wanted.
It was [Parise's agent Wade] Arnott. Both players would accept identical contracts. It was Parise's idea.
The numbers turned out to be 13 years and $98 million. The contracts included identical signing bonus structures ($25 million the first three years) and no-trade clauses. Both players could have made more elsewhere. Parise reportedly had been offered $110 million by Philadelphia. Suter was offered more than $100 million by a team [agent Neil] Sheehy wouldn't identify.
To make the Minnesota contracts identical, Parise actually took less than the Wild had offered him.
We'll repeat: Parise turned down money from the Wild -- the team that actually wound up signing him -- so he and Suter could have identical contracts. He signed for $98 million. The Flyers offered him $110 million over what we presume is 13 years.
ONE-HUNDRED-TEN MILLION DOLLARS, guys.
This is news to us. Our previous assumption was that the Flyers offers were at least $80 million over 12 years, but not anywhere near $110 million over 13. That's a cap hit of $8.46 million per year. Every season until Zach Parise turns 40. Thanks for going home to Minnesota, Zach.