LeBrun: ‘I think that day David Poile knew he would trade Shea Weber’

How might the signing of an offer sheet impact the relationship between the player and the team that owns his rights?

It’s one of the aspects of offer sheets that may be considered less often by fans.

During a Tuesday morning Halford & Brough segment on Vancouver’s TSN 1040, Pierre LeBrun was asked about a variety of William Nylander-related angles, including the potential of an offer sheet for the restricted free agent.

At one point, LeBrun was asked to delve into how much consideration of that relationship dynamic plays into negotiations in general between players and teams, and it sparked an interesting exploration of a 2012 situation.

“Bang on,” agreed LeBrun. “Because I will tell you right now, I don’t believe the relationship between Shea Weber and the Nashville Predators and David Poile was ever the same after his offer sheet with the Flyers.

“I mean, as popular a player he was as a captain of that team - and certainly to his last remaining day as a Predator he was very popular with his teammates - but I mean to your point, the relationship between management and the player, I think that took a hit.”

The offer sheet, which was tendered in July of 2012 by a Flyers team that had been trying to acquire Weber by trade and then was signed by Weber himself, was for 14 years and $110 million.

$13 million in signing bonus money was due in each of the first four seasons, with $1 million each year in salary. Years Five and Six came with $12 million totals - $8 million each in signing bonuses, and $4 million each in salary.

“I will never be able to get David Poile to admit this because I just think he never would,” continued LeBrun. “But I believe the day that the Predators matched that offer sheet - grudgingly because at the end of the day they still felt their better chance to win a championship was with a Shea Weber in his prime - but I think the day they matched that offer sheet from the Flyers, which was incredibly front-loaded, as you just outlined, I think that day David Poile knew he would trade Shea Weber at one point. I really do. I just think that he probably just felt that it would have to be a few years later, and on his own terms.”

Poile dealt Weber to the Montreal Canadiens in June of 2016 in a trade for P.K. Subban.

“In fact, I will go as far as to say this,” added LeBrun. “We always look at the Weber-Subban blockbuster as Montreal being the team that so aggressively was shopping P.K. Subban that summer, and to some degree that’s true because they had conversations with other teams. But you have to understand that it was David Poile, by all accounts, that walked across the draft floor and went to Marc Bergevin and said, ‘What about this?’ They had never talked before, that trade.

“So I’m just saying, we’re going off on a bit of a tangent here, but I think you’re bang on - that’s the No. 1 issue with the offer sheet, if a team matches it, is they kind of look at you in a different way after that. I think there’s no question.”

Contract-related info via CapFriendly