By Rick Gethin
The Hockey Writers
Earlier Wednesday, Scott Howson sent a contract offer to Rick Nash’s agent Joe Resnick. Last night, Aaron Portzline (Columbus Dispatch) broke the story that the two sides weren’t even close. No details of the offer were released by either side, although the Dispatch is saying that sources said it was a five (5) year deal.
Nash had some harsh words for the team that he has spent his NHL career with. “Things didn’t line up the way I anticipated them lining up,” Nash said. “I thought we had a solid chance of getting (a contract) done, especially with all the interest they said they had going into this.“If this doesn’t happen in the next week, and we can’t hit a number where we’re both satisfied and we both feel it’s fair … if they want me that bad, they’ll get it done.”
Strong words coming from the face of the franchise. He goes on, “There were tons of teams throwing some pretty big money around (yesterday),” Nash said. “If this doesn’t get done, I’m sure I won’t have a problem getting signed by somebody next summer.”
That last line makes me think that there are GMs that are now actively salivating at the possibility, however remote, of landing a franchise player of Nash’s caliber. Brian Burke has to be positively apoplectic with this development. I can just see the headlines in Toronto now, “The Prodigal Son Returns Home”.
While this is a negotiation, the language used by Nash seems rather uncharacteristic of him. Is there an ulterior motive behind what he said? The coming days will play out this chapter of Columbus Blue Jackets/Rick Nash history. I’ll have more on this as the story develops.