Thursday, June 21, 2018

Regarding Panarin

C'mon down, Artemi Panarin!!
Hi!  Just a quick note before all the craziness of the draft starts, and this gets swamped with other news.  The Blue Jackets want to sign Artemi Panarin.  We should not interpret the recent news that Panarin's agent is unwilling to start negotiations now as a sign that Artemi does not want to be in Columbus.

We should definitely interpret it as Panarin's agent (Dan Milstein I think, apologies if I am wrong, I'm on the run) has an affirmative obligation to his client to see how the whole John Tavares saga plays out at the New York Islanders before he begins negotiating.  Tavares may garner some unusual and creative twist in his contract, not to mention setting the market for elite, unrestricted free agents. 

It would be borderline criminal negligence for the agent to start negotiating now. The Panarin camp sent a signal to Jarmo that it is not important that he see an offer on July 1, the first day they could sign Artemi to an extension, as a token of the Blue Jackets interest.  They are saying "we know you are interested, my feelings won't get hurt if I don't have an offer on July 1."  This prevents the Jackets from unwittingly making an offensively low offer. 

Free agency MUST play out before the market is set, and Panarin's agent set the timing for things to start.  As Jarmo said, there is plenty of time to work this out. 

The worst case scenario for the Jackets is for Panarin to sign a lucrative, long term deal, and then put it into glide mode.  Maybe not win some of those puck battles, etc.  This is a critical year for the franchise, and as a long suffering fan, I want nothing more than to see Panarin bringing the thunder in a contract year.  We'll know by the trade deadline if this is working for us; I suspect it will be working just fine.  And the trade deadline is a loooonnnggg way away. 

So enjoy the summer, party for the draft, and watch the free agency show unfold.  That will tell us what Panarin can likely command, and at that point, they may be willing to open negotiations.  We shall see.


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