Last Wednesday, the Minnesota Wild announced that they will buy out the remaining three years of Mark Parrish's contract.
According to the team's Web site, Parrish will get two-thirds of the $8.35 million he was due and will be paid out over the next six years.
Some people say Parrish didn't fit in to the style of the Wild, or he was just not very productive on offense. Parrish did score a career-low 16 goals last season, but as noted on a feature on the team's Web site, GM Doug Risebrough said the buy-out was note motivated by production.
"As I looked at our cap number, it was just too close to the ceiling", Riseborugh told Wild.com.
In that same article, Risebrough explained that it is not a good idea to enter the season with little cap room and would make it difficult to render injuries or make any roster moves.
Parrish, a native of Bloomington, MN, skated two years at St. Cloud State University and then went on to play for Seattle in the WHL.
Drafted originally by Colorado in 1996, he didn't see his first NHL game until 1998, as a member of the Florida Panthers.
As a member of the Wild, he recorded 69 points in 142 games over two seasons.
As for Risebrough and the Wild, who have been one of the more active teams this offseason, with multiple signings and many new faces, there are more than just monetary reasons why the team made the move.
"We needed to make a change. We've committed to our young players, and this summer, we've added veteran players who we identified and brought in for specific reasons. What was left? Mark.
We made this move now to address the cap reality and to allow Mark the chance to settle himself and his family with another team before the season begins," Risebrough told Wild.com.
So, is this the start of making room in the salary cap to address the contract of superstar Marian Gaborik?
This is highly likely. Many hockey experts believe that unless Minnesota re-signs Gaborik early in the season, Gaborik is likely to be traded at or before the trade deadline.
However should Minnesota make it a priority to re-sign Gaborik? Yes. With the loss of Brian Rolston, the only other Wild player last year besides Gaborik to score above 30 goals, Minnesota needs the offense and the speed he is known for.