Brendan Morrison has been hot lately and one wonders if a few Vancouver Canucks fans are not second-guessing their team's decision to cut him at the last moment.
In the last ten games, he has 4G and 7A, and is +6. He has recently found himself centering the first line between Iginla and Tanguay with more and more regularity. He is 64th overall in the NHL in assists and just out of the top 100 in points, which may not raise too many eyebrows until you note his cap hit--a modest 725k.
BMo has 32 points on the season and is on a PPG pace of 0.58 points per game, great production value for a player collecting his salary.
If we compare BMo to another undisputed bargain player on the Flames, Alex Tanguay, just how much cap value he brings to the team becomes clear. Tangs has 42 points on the season and is scoring at a pace of 0.76 points per game, but Tangs is also paid more than twice what BMo is at 1.7 million, and has owned the first line LW spot all season. It is widely accepted that Tanguay himself is excellent value for his performance, but with BMo we are getting into the type of bargain that makes you think you found a Gretzky rookie card for a dollar at a garage sale.
In terms of cost per point, Tangs is on track for about a 62-point season at a cost of $27,419.00 per point. BMo is on track for about a 48-point season at a cost of $15,104.00 a point. Even Alex Tanguay cannot equal BMo's value on a cost-per-point basis.
At the time of the Brendan Morrison signing, I'll admit I was skeptical. BMo was one of the very last cuts from the Canucks roster. He was not in the Flames camp and he did not even play one single pre-season game with the Flames.
At age 35, he was not my ideal fit when we already had two centres over 30 in Jokinen and Conroy on the roster at the time. I endorsed the move mainly because of his $725K one-year cap hit--as low-risk, low cost a move as you are going to get. I was clinging to gilded optimism for Stajan and Jokinen to own the one and two centre spots at the time.
In retrospect, Morrison was a key signing, as neither Jokinen nor Stajan laid a strong claim to the title of first line centre between Tanguay and Iginla.
The Canucks let a bargain slip away and their loss proved to be the Flames' gain. Perhaps he didn't fit the Canucks needs with their depth at centre, but he has fit the Flames like a glove this season.
I almost want to send the Canucks a "Thank You" card.