Well, the most important arbitration deadline in Preds history came and passed this morning. All indications and guesses by those "in-the-know" said a deal would get done before today. So let's ponder what this means from many angles.
1. David Poile/Shea Weber's promise- both parties said this would get done before arbitration and Shea would be a Predator for a long time. They are committed to each other, the city and the franchise. Somebody told a story to be determined later. This should not have went to arbitration.
2. David Poile/Preds- The fans have seen minimal free agent signings because of small market limitations. The salary purge of Timmonen, Vokoun, Hartnell(and others) still stings to this day. If the Preds can't sign Weber for more than 2 years, the fans have every right to stop supporting a franchise who can't pay the best players to stay in Nashville.
3. Shea Weber- We have heard nothing from him other than he wants to be here but actions speak louder than words. Leak some info to the newspapers, ESPN, etc. if the Preds aren't making a good faith effort. Show the fans you are trying to get a deal done. I haven't seen anything to make me believe he wants to remain in Nashville long term. I hope I am wrong.
4. Poile/Preds ownership- Saw a recent stat concerning the 16 teams that made the playoffs this past season. Counting the top 5 salaries already committed to for 2011-12 season, the Preds were at the bottom of the list at $20.1 million. The Capitals were #1 at 32.6 million. I would say there is room to sign Shea Weber. Who cares if you overpay some? The fans and franchise need a leader. Quit worrying about how Rinne and Suter's deals come into play. Just get it done.
Interest details should be coming out later today. I just hope the Preds ownership have not lost a large block of fans playing moneyball with Weber. All the momentum from last year looks to be in jeopardy.