According to a report from Minnesota Wild insider Michael Russo of The Athletic, the Wild are "willing" to sign KHL superstar Kiril Kaprizov to an NHL contract if and when the NHLPA ratifies the proposed collective bargaining agreement that they will vote on tomorrow.
For those who don't know, Kaprizov is a dynamic goal scorer whom the Wild selected way back in 2015. He has spent the past six seasons in Russia, playing mostly with the KHL's CSKA Moscow. He put up a remarkable 33 goals and 62 points in 57 games in 2019-20. Here's the thing though... once he signs, he'll have to wait until 2020-21 to suit up for the Wild AND the team will lose one year of his entry level contract. In effect, they'll lose a year of control over this kid just to lure him over to North America. At this point though... what's another year off the back end of his deal? Wild fans have waited three years for this kid already.
After a lot of thought regarding the pros (assuring Kaprizov’s signed for the 2020-21 season) and cons (Kaprizov becoming a restricted free agent after the 2020-21 season as opposed to after the 2021-22 season) of this option vs. signing Kaprizov to a two-year deal starting in the 2020-21 season, general manager Bill Guerin has decided, sources say, that he is willing to sign Kaprizov for 2019-20 and burn the first year if Kaprizov wants to do so.
The Wild aren’t positive yet that Kaprizov would want to sign for 2019-20 and burn the first year. Kaprizov would not receive his 2019-20 salary or signing bonus if he burns the first year of his entry-level contract. He would, however, receive a $92,500 signing bonus for 2020-21 on Nov. 1, a $832,500 salary next season and up to $2.85 million in performance bonus potentials and get a year closer to a big payday next summer.
Kaprizov’s agent hasn’t responded to a request for comment on this subject.
Then there's the 2020-21 KHL season to consider. KHL players are expected to hit the ice in October just when the NHL season concludes. You expect the kid to just sit out until the NHL is back on the ice? Why wouldn't he sign in Russia and prevent missing out on further development?
More from Russo:
If Kaprizov signs his two-year deal now, the Wild are willing to “loan” Kaprizov to a team in Europe to play at the start of their 2020-21 season as long as Kaprizov is released in time to arrive for the start of the Wild’s 2020-21 training camp. While the NHL’s 2020-21 season may not start until January, several European leagues are planning to start on time in the fall.
Suffice it to say, this is a complicated negotiation. Maybe THE most complicated negotiation in the NHL today. Stay tuned Wild fans, you may get some resolution on this saga very soon.
For the full article from Russo, click below: