Report: Shea Weber Signs 14-Year Offer Sheet with Flyers, Predators Must Match

Tom Urtz Jr.@@TomUrtzJrContributor IJuly 19, 2012

NASHVILLE, TN - FEBRUARY 14: Shea Weber #6 of the Nashville Predators eyes the scoreboard during the game against the Chicago Blackhawks at the Bridgestone Arena on February 14, 2012 in Nashville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Nashville Predators had said they would match any offer sheet to free-agent defenseman Shea Weber, but this is one offer sheet that they may be unable to match.

TSN's Darren Dreger broke the news that the Philadelphia Flyers had sent Shea Weber a 14-year offer sheet that would be worth upwards of $100 million.


Breaking: Shea Weber agrees to offer sheet with Philadelphia. 14 years, upwards of $100 mil. Preds have 7 days to match. Wow!!

— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) July 19, 2012



Weber signed the deal and the Predators have a week to match the deal. If they don't match the offer sheet, they are entitled to compensation; Yahoo's Puck Daddy broke it down.

Depending on what Weber's cap hit would be, the Predators could receive as many as four first-round pucks or two first-round picks, a second and a third. The Flyers own their first-round picks for at least the next two drafts, with the 2014 NHL Draft scheduled for Philadelphia.

This is massive breaking news and if this deal is unmatched, the Philadelphia Flyers would have made the biggest splash during this free-agency period. Weber is an elite defenseman and is of the same mould as current Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger.

This move could be a major game-changer in the landscape of the Eastern Conference and it is a move that could force other teams to make deals themselves. If Weber ends up becoming a Flyer, you can guarantee that the Penguins and Rangers will do their best to make something happen.

In this situation, David Poile needs to match the offer sheet immediately. Odds are that he would have probably offered Weber a contract in the same ballpark so by matching the sheet, Weber would remain a Predator.

The next part becomes very interesting. Although the Predators would forgo a bevy of draft picks, the compensation isn't fair.

The multiple first-round picks would likely be anywhere between 20-30 given the impact Weber would have on the Flyers. If Weber doesn't want to stay in Nashville, Poile can still trade him. He would have to wait one year and then he could open the market for Weber.

A player like Weber on the open market could draw two top-six forwards, a top-four defenseman, a prospect and a draft pick. Teams will move assets and will free up space if he hits the trade market because he would be worth every penny.

David Poile needs to make the right decision. If he fails to match this offer sheet, he loses his franchise player and receives draft picks that won't help the franchise. He should match the sheet and worry about the finances later if he attempts to deal Weber during the summer of 2013.