Arizona Coyotes forward Tobias Rieder also seems to be ready to explore other options.
It’s already been known that Rieder is frustrated in his current negotiations with the Coyotes and will not attend training camp once he is finished playing for Team Europe at the World Cup.
On Wednesday afternoon, his agent, Darren Ferris, told Arizonasports.com’s Craig Morgan via email that he thinks it would be best for both parties if the Coyotes simply trade his client at this point, and that Rieder is “really disappointed” with the team.
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“It’s unfortunate that a good kid gets treated this way. He never balked at the defensive role they made him play, and they don’t seem to value the intangibles he brings to the team.”
The Coyotes do not seem to have any interest in actually dealing Rieder at this point.
There’s a lot of rhetoric here, and that really should not be a shock considering the circumstances, but when looking at the numbers that are being talked about this doesn’t seem like a situation that should be beyond repair. A middle ground isn’t that far off.
According to Rieder’s agent, he is seeking a two-year deal worth $2.5 million per year. The team is reportedly holding strong with either an offer at $2.2 million per year, or a lower one-year qualifying offer. Again, that’s not a huge gap in terms of asking price. In actual salary it’s a total of $600,000 over two years, while the cap hit is only an extra $300,000 each year. For a young player that is already fairly productive and still has some upside to get better.
The middle ground in those two numbers would be a cap hit of $2.35 million per season.
The 23-year-old Rieder has played two full seasons in the NHL with the Coyotes and is coming off of a 14-goal, 37-point performance.
Originally a fourth-round draft pick by the Edmonton Oilers, the Coyotes acquired Rieder in a 2013 trade for Kale Kessy. Seeing as that Kessy has yet to play a single game in the NHL and only recorded 12 points in 56 AHL games a season ago it’s been a pretty good deal for the Coyotes.
Now they just need to find a way to make sure they can continue to benefit from it by trying to bridge this (relatively speaking) small gap in contract talks.