Crosby contract extension announced before free agency...for a reason

PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 21: Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins takes the ice for warmups against the New York Islanders for the first time since sustaining a concussion on January 5 during the game on November 21, 2011 at CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

The breaking news that Sidney Crosby has agreed to sign with the Pittsburgh Penguins for a twelve year contract extension, is not that surprising. Make no mistake about the timing though.

Due to the terms of the collective bargaining agreement, the deal can't be signed and official until July 1st. The day free agency starts. So why all the reports on twitter, confirmed by Crosby's agent and the team itself? This is a message to the free agents, most notably the two prizes on the market Zach Parise and Ryan Suter.

It says, point blank, if you come to Pittsburgh, Crosby will be here for the entirity of your stay. And so long as you have Sidney Crosby on your team, you know management will be attempting to field a competitive team with the realisitic goal of making a play to chase down the Stanley Cup year after year. This is serious business.

And, the same $8.7 million salary also a warning shot too. Yesterday Washington traded impending free agent Dennis Wideman to Calgary, who signed the defenseman to a 5 year, $5.25 million contract...Per season. Free agency always inflates value, so it's frightening to think of the staggering offers that better players like Suter and Parise are about to have tossed their way. The message here being: Pittsburgh's obviously setting the bar here, and players have to take a little less to fill out the team and better compete.

Obviously, not everyone's going to make the big sacrifice and commitment that Crosby just did for the Pens by locking in the prime years of his career at (currently) $5.3 million under the maximum salary...But it shows that here, in this town, there is a commitment starting with the captain to winning and a team-first mentality.

On Sunday, probably shortly after noon, we'll see if guys like Parise and Suter are also interested in such a commitment.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join PensBurgh

You must be a member of PensBurgh to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at PensBurgh. You should read them.

Join PensBurgh

You must be a member of PensBurgh to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at PensBurgh. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker