VANCOUVER CANADA - JANUARY 22: Goalie Miikka Kiprusoff #34 of the Calgary Flames keeps an eye on the puck as he readies to make a glove save against the Vancouver Canucks during the first period in NHL action on January 22 2011 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver British Columbia Canada. Cory Sarich #6 of the Flames skates past in the foreground. (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images)
I honestly don't even know at this point.
With this contract - and without going into the specifics of it, or hell, even the merit of it - the Flames have made yet another confusing move. The Flames now have 9 defensemen on one-way contracts and a two-way contract on a defender that was slotted in by many to be the 4th guy on the blue line this year (but now, obviously, isn't).
Now, the abundance of contracts would be okay with me if exactly 5 of them weren't given to replacement-level players, but, here we are. I don't particularly dislike Sarich - okay, that's a lie, I think he's terrible - but there is literally no reason to give a contract to a guy you can already replace 5 times over. Hell, the Flames had to ship Jordan Henry off because of the amount of SPC's they have wouldn't have allowed them to sign Dennis Wideman to that inane deal. Now, I don't mean to frame that as a huge loss because it isn't - but it is confusing that even though the Flames recognize that they're awash in middle-of-the-road contracts they keep handing them out.
As for this contract, it's at the very least a year too long. Sarich basically fell off a cliff in 10-11, leading to him starting this prior season in the press box. After a trade demand (never confirmed publicly by the organization, but I can tell you it did happen) and some spectacularly poor play in the first half of the season last year, Sarich managed to not totally suck while playing alongside TJ Brodie after Derek Smith went down. To me, that says more about Brodie then it does about Sarich.
So, to recap: the Flames just gave a two-year, $4-million dollar deal to a 34 year old, who in the last two years had approximately 35 games of not-AHL-level play. But - there is this:
Wait - that's not a good thing. Fuck.
What is happening with this team?
UPDATE AT 3:25 PM: The Flames have also re-signed C Blair Jones to a 2-year deal with an AAV of $650k and Lee Stempniak has also agreed to a 2-year deal worth $2.5 million per. Both of these are solid deals for guys who can push the puck the right way. A third line of Comeau-Jones-Stempniak will create a lot of room to shelter the top-6 forwards if used the right way by Hartley. Credit where credit's due - Feaster did a solid job on these two contracts.