Decent money for a 3-year old (Image via ESPN)
As reported by the internet (I don’t actually know who had it first, since everyone and their grandmother tweeted it in between times I refreshed my timeline) RFA defenseman Chris Tanev and the Vancouver Canucks have come to terms on a 1-year deal worth $1.5 million, finally ending the stalemate between the two sides.
Read on past the jump for more on Tanev, and his new deal.
This is rough timing for me, personally, as I was just putting the finishing touches on an article which included 23 comparable RFA defensemen who have re-signed in the past 15 months. But obviously this comes as welcome news for fans of the team as these proceedings seemed to drag on for far longer than was expected.
When Cam Charron published a post about Mikhail Grabovski a few days ago, he pencilled Tanev in for $1.2 million (which I happened to agree with). I figured that the report that Tanev was considering offers from the KHL and Swiss Elite League – conveniently surfaced by his agent, as a leverage play no doubt – was bogus, and never really got worked up about the potential of him not being a Canuck come October 3rd. This news doesn’t surprise me, is what I’m trying to say.
The interesting part of this to me comes from Iain MacIntyre’s tweet shortly after the news broke:
I’m a little baffled by this, honestly (and in fairness to Iain, he’s not the only one to suggest this). I feel like we know what Chris Tanev is, despite the fact that he’s only turning 24 in December. He’s a 3rd pairing defenseman that can drive play in the right direction against tertiary competition. Likely his most useful skill, though, is the fact that he doesn’t really take penalties while drawing them at a decent rate. In fact, according to Cam – which will be posted in due time, he claims – Tanev had the 3rd best penalty differential amongst defensemen in the NHL last season.
There’s no doubt that all those things still make him a useful asset for the organization, and losing him would have been a big blow. Trust me, you don’t want to be part of the Yannick Weber Experience. However, what Tanev won’t do is contribute anything offensively, and because of that, he will probably never "get a lot richer". He will still be an RFA next summer (though he will have arbitration rights, which is a luxury he didn’t have this time around), and barring some completely unexpected, I believe that he’ll likely receive another 1 or 2-year deal in the similar price range.