Projecting Derick Brassard’s next contract

July 19, 2014, by
Photo: Michael Ivins, USA TODAY Sports

Photo: Michael Ivins, USA TODAY Sports

Derick Brassard is the third and final RFA that filed for arbitration this month (Mats Zuccarello and Chris Kreider). I’ve looked at both Kreider’s and Zuccarello’s next contracts already, and with arbitration dates coming up, it’s time to look at Brassard’s potential deal.

Brassard is an interesting case, if only because of his high salary and inconsistent production. Despite his inconsistencies, he was a part of the most consistent line and powerplay unit for the Rangers last year. Brass has been a 50-point pace guy in the regular season, and has actually been a nice playoff producer as well. HeĀ is just off his second contract, which paid him $3.7 million last year (his QO) at a cap hit of $3.2 million over hit over the four years of the contract. At 26 years old, the Rangers will be buying his UFA years.

Perhaps the newly signed Tyler Ennis out of Buffalo is the best comparable to Brass. They have similar offensive output over their careers, and their #fancystats are close enough that we can compare them. Ennis has fewer OZ starts, but played with more quality teammates. Those more or less balance out. Ennis, if you recall, got a five-year deal at a $4.6 million cap hit. Although, Ennis is two years younger, meaning there were fewer UFA years to buy.

Antoine Vermette is in the middle of a five-year deal at a $3.75 million cap hit. But he signed that before the 2010-2011 season and was a UFA, so there is a bit of a difference there. Joffrey Lupul got a five-year deal at $5.25 million a year, but that was from Toronto. Tyler Bozak got five years and $4.2 million from Toronto as well with worse numbers than Brassard.

In Part Three of my series projecting the 2014-2015 payroll, I ballparked Brass at $4.5 million. Ennis’ contract, which is the most direct comparable I could find, cements that estimation. Term for Brassard is always going to be the issue, as committing long-term is a risky proposition. Naturally, Brassard’s cap hit will be affected by the term, but I’d venture a guess that he gets three or four years at around $4.5 million, give or take $250k.

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  1. Puck Luck @Centerman21 says:

    $4.5 mil would be a good contract for Brassard and the Rangers. The problem is that I don’t think they will be buying UFA years just yet. He’s asking for a Million more than that and I get that you start high so you get what you want in negotiations. However, arbitration may be the cheapest way to resign Brassard for the Rangers where he should get about the $4.5 mil you alluded to. $4.2-$4.7 is the range he’s in with an arbitrator. I don’t know the Rangers can resign him any cheaper without an arbitrator and that’ll be a 1 or 2 year deal. Usually only 1.

  2. Walt says:

    If Brass does sign for the $4.5 range, that would be slightly high, but we could live with it. The term being 3 to 4 is doable. If he should need to be moved down the road, another team can handle that contract easily enough.

    Also, let’s not forget that in the 2 play offs he has played for us, he has been one of our best forwards out there. Much more so than a lot of the other big names!!!!!

    • Puck Luck @Centerman21 says:

      You’re right. I thought I heard a stat in the last 2 playoffs Brassard is the leading scorer on the Rangers. The other side of that coin is how many players is he ahead of that were here last season. It’s not saying a whole lot.
      He is asking way too much. I hope it’s just a negotiation tactic because he and his agent know Sather is tighter than a ducks A$$ in a frozen pond. If he’s asking for more than $4.7 mil then I’d let him go to arbitration. That’s the most he’ll get there. It’s really important to sign them as cheaply as possible. Kreider should be easy but Zuc is getting a large raise and Brassard was making a lot more on his last deal. We can’t have a 3rd line Center making $5.5 mil. What will Stepan want? You know Stepan is gonna have a year more like 12/13 where he was a PPG player than how bad he was early on last year.

  3. Chris F says:

    Kreider – Stepan – Nash
    Stempniak- Brassard-Zuccarello
    Hagelin- Lombardi – St Louis
    Glass – Moore- ?

    Miller, Fast, Lindberg, Haggerty are all potential options, but who’s best suited for a stint on the 4th line as a stepping stone. –

    • Puck Luck @Centerman21 says:

      I really don’t want to come off like a dooch right now but you have the lines pretty well mixed up. Those won’t be what any good coach like AV would put together. 1st of all the top line was holding Nash back. Sather either has to find a righty to play on the top line or Kreider has to play the right side. I think he can play the off wing but it’d be better to have Kreider on the 2nd line LW with Brass and MSL. 2-You have the Lefty on the right and the righty on the left. If that’s the line it has to be switched. Although I think MSL is a better 2nd RW than Stempniak. 3rd they signed Mueller to a 1 way deal so they either chance loosing him to waivers or they put him in the lineup. I’m sure there will be a competition in camp for a spot between those players and others. Marek Hrivik has been close the last 2 seasons but was one of the final cuts. He would be a good 4th line player due to his size. Haggerty has never played a pro game yet.
      They need righties in the lineup. That’s why they signed Stempniak and Mueller. Fast is a righty too and his style of play might be good on the bottom 6. Lindberg and Miller need to beat someone out by a large margin in camp and preseason since they’re left handed. I want to see a few months of Nash on the LW. He would be 1st in on the forecheck and have more chances at making a play with the puck. If Kreider is F2 with his speed that should optimise that line. The 2nd line should be dangerous too since Brassard and Zuc play so well together. We won’t know who goes where until game 1 of 82 and even then it is subject to change with all the roster turnover again this summer.

  4. Garden Faithful says:

    It is outrageous that Brassard is trying to get 5.5 per. Here is the list of people who are currently getting about 5.5 per:

    Jeff Carter
    St Louis
    Evander Kane

    Give Brass 3 or 4 years at 4.5 per.