Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Habs to Make Hamrlik an Offer
Multiple sources confirm this morning that Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier will be making pending UFA Roman Hamrlik a contract offer prior to July 1st.
As a big Hamrlik fan since his signing in Montreal, I see this as a positive. However, one must wonder what it means for the rest of the group of defensemen. Hopefully it signifies Gauthier is confident he'll be able to deal Jaroslav Spacek to a team willing to take the cap hit and in need of a veteran presence on the back end. Hopefully it DOESN'T mean the murmurs of a Josh Gorges trade rumours had legs to them, as one of Gauthier's goals this off-season was to get younger.
Hamrlik has been an important piece of the Montreal blueline as an aging but solid top 4 guy, who has really stepped up and taken the brunt of the load when Andrei Markov has fallen to injury. A versatile player who can take shifts both on the penalty kill and powerplay, if signed for a reduced role and significantly reduced salary, Hammer would be great to have around for one last season. Plus, we know he loves Montreal and wants to stay, which is always a benefit.
The story has since been corroborated by numerous sources, including Hamrlik's agent, so an offer should be coming shortly. Whether or not it will be satisfactory to the Hamrlik camp remains to be seen. If I had to guess, the terms would be roughly 1 year, $3M.