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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

Star-Telegram Staff Writer

Exactly how much is a goal-scorer worth? What about when he doesn't score?

Those are the questions that plague Stars management this off-season, with regard to the team's highest-paid player, wing Bill Guerin, who led the Stars in scoring in 2003-04 but slipped into mediocrity last season.

If Guerin made half of his $6.7 million salary, perhaps the Stars wouldn't be seriously considering a buyout by Friday. Instead, in the salary-cap era, they could save $4.5 million toward the $44 million cap - and they currently have only about $8 million left with 15 players under contract and free agency ahead.

The decision facing team owner Tom Hicks and general manager Doug Armstrong - if they haven't already made it - seems to be all about the numbers. For instance, could they even theoretically keep Guerin and sign free-agent center Jason Arnott and either defenseman Willie Mitchell or Jon Klemm?

"It just becomes a math equation then," Armstrong said. "Look at your roster and add that number. You really do have to rob Peter to pay Paul in a cap system to get it all in there."

If money is the only cri8terion, a Guerin buyout seems likely to happen by Friday. But Guerin himself isn't sure what'll happen.

"It's one of those things that you know affects your life greatly and you try not to think about it," Guerin said. "It goes back and forth - some days I think I'm gone, and the next day I think, well, maybe there's an outside chance."

We'll know this week; in the meantime, here are pros and cons for the Stars to consider in regard to a buyout of Guerin's contract:


1. A buyout would save major money: Of course, if the Stars bought out Guerin, they would have far more flexibility to work a deal with Arnott and/or Mitchell, or exercise Klemm's $1.1 million, one-year option. That might not be their plan, however.

"We'd like to start opening the season at 10 percent under the cap," Armstrong said. "We're not going to give too much money and too much term to unrestricted free agents."

2. Guerin is replaceable, at least judging by last season: Guerin totaled 13 goals and 27 assists in the 2005-06 season. That point total ranked 180th in the NHL.

In goals, Guerin ranked 216th. Those numbers should be reachable for a much cheaper free-agent acquisition.

3. Guerin is not getting any younger: At 35, he struggled in a faster game and, at least early in the season, couldn't find a way to get to the net and use his size and strength to his advantage.


1. Not another free-agent bust: If Guerin is bought out, it'll be reminiscent of the Pierre Turgeon fiasco. Coming off four consecutive 60-point-plus seasons, Turgeon came to Dallas in 2001 and rattled off two middling seasons, with 42 and 40 points, respectively, and 12 and 15 goals. The Stars would look a lot smarter if they kept Guerin and he had a rebound season than if they had to put a stop payment on another bad check.

2. One bad season does not a career make: Guerin scored 34 goals and had 35 assists in 2003-04. Who's to say he can't do it again? Especially after a late-season eye injury derailed his best scoring stretch.

3. Thirty-five is the new 30: Just because Guerin is advancing in age doesn't necessarily mean he can't be a top player in the NHL. Chris Chelios played more than 18 solid minutes a game for Detroit last season - at age 44. Teemu Selanne, also 35, scored 40 goals last season with Anaheim, after an awful pre-lockout year.

"I think I've got plenty of good years left in me," Guerin said. "Guys are playing to 38, 39, 40 now like it's nothing, and I'm going to be the same way."

Maybe so, but in whose uniform?

25,851 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Stars cut veteran forward Guerin

Canadian Press
6/29/2006 4:27:44 PM

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports that the Dallas Stars placed forward Bill Guerin on 24-hour waivers Thursday, setting up a buyout of his contract for Friday.

Guerin was to make $6.7 million US next season.

"It's not a surprise," Guerin told the newspaper.

"It kind of shocks you when you actually hear it. My feelings right now are very mixed - my family's incredibly happy here, they're very settled. It's disappointing that it didn't work out with the Stars."

According to the Star-Telegram, the Stars will pay the him $4.5 million US over the next two years, money that will not count toward the NHL's $44 million US salary cap.

Guerin, 35, scored 13 goals and 27 assists in 70 games last season and spent the past three seasons with the Stars.

6,099 Posts
Well, his price tag was too high, and with the Cap in place, teams can't just throw money at guys like him.

If he does go elsewhere, it'll probably be for $3.5M or less.
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