Jiri Hudler had to be one the happiest free agent-to-bes in the world of the NHL last week.
Hudler is among a handful of free-agent forwards who had decent offensive seasons.
The group was thrilled to see Colorado’s David Jones, who scored 20 goals and had 17 assists, sign a four-year contract worth $16 million with the Avalanche, foregoing unrestricted free agency.
David Jones? That kind of money?
If Jones is worth that money, how much is Hudler worth?
Hudler, in case you’ve forgotten, had 25 goals and dished out 25 assists. A fine year, not spectacular, but without a doubt Hudler found chemistry with linemates Henrik Zetterberg and Valtteri Filppula and was one of the Wings’ better players.
It’s been speculated that Hudler should be able to get an outstanding offer from somewhere. But now, there’s little doubt Hudler should be able to land a huge deal from another team looking for offense.
They’ll see Hudler’s production and offer Hudler even more money than Jones got.
General manager Ken Holland said he will offer Hudler a contract soon, but it’s likely it’ll be below $4 million per season.
Hudler is probably better off staying with the Wings and playing with players who complement his skills.
But that’s probably not going to matter. If David Jones can land a contract worth $4 million per season, Hudler is going to get similar or better money – and price himself out of Detroit.