Restricted free agent defenseman Shea Weber has reportedly signed an offer sheet with the Philadelphia Flyers. Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet is reporting the deal is $110M over 14 years ($7.86M cap hit), with a $68M signing bonus to be paid out over the first six years. The deal includes $28M over the next calendar year and $56M between now and July 1, 2015.
The Preds have seven days to match the offer or Weber will join the Flyers. If Nashville lets Weber go, they would receive four first round picks from the Flyers as compensation for the offer sheet.
This has been a tough summer for a division that had perhaps the best collection of defensemen in the NHL for the last few years. Detroit's Nicklas Lidstrom retired and they traded Brad Stuart to San Jose. And Nashville already lost Weber's partner, Ryan Suter, for nothing this summer to unrestricted free agency.
This would be the fourth contract handed out this summer of near/over $100M in spite of the NHL's owners reportedly wanting to roll back the player's share of hockey related revenue and limit contract lengths in the new collective bargaining agreement. The hypocrisy is too much to ignore.