The money flows for Brooks

I like Brooks Laich. I think he’s an excellent player. A valuable player. A guy who really can do a little bit of everything. Even his name has a cool ring to it.

And by changing the tire of a Washington Capitals fan on the side of the road following the Capitals playoff exit in 2010, he even provided free public relations for Gary Bettman, making hockey players look like genuine good guys.

But six years and $27.5 million? 

Message to Ted Leonsis: Laich is not a superstar. He is depth behind Alexander Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom on the Washington Capitals. If you believe in the normal pattern of NHL development, he’s at his peak as a player right now.

The Capitals may have originally got him for nothing — in a trade from the  Ottawa Senators for soon-to-be-retired Peter Bondra — but he’s hardly cheap anymore. He’s gone from being a bargain to being the latest in a long line of players who helps drive salaries up and up and up.

Why, oh, why do NHL owners continue to shoot themselves in the foot?

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