The Latest Tamp-tation of Brian Burke

Danny Gray
May 28 2012 09:35AM

 

Talking to Justin Schultz: Tha'ts a Tamperin'

According to some speculation from reporter Michael Russo the Anaheim Ducks are preparing to file tampering charges with the leauge once Justin Schultz signs elsewhere on July 1st, 2012. While he didn't name names, this story on the Wisconsin SBN site shows that he believes that Shultz will sign with the Leafs. Ipso Facto, the Ducks will be filing tampering charges with the Leafs. All of this brings up a few questions. (Please note that absolutley none of this begs any questions, you're using it wrong. Stop.) 

Question The First: What is Tampering?

The only place you'll find the word "tamper" in the CBA is the section on Standard Player Contracts. Article 10 states:

 

The Player agrees he will not tamper with or enter into negotiations with any Player under SPC or reservation to any Club of the League for or regarding such Player's current or future services, without the written consent of the Club with which such Player is connected under penalty of a fine to be imposed by the Commissioner of the League.

 

If Schultz and anyone representing the Leafs have spoken about signing a contract, that would be tampering. 

Question Two: So What?

The leauge as well as other GMs view tampering as a No-No. If you'll recall the Leafs have been charged with tampering in the past. In June of 2009 Ron Wilson mentioned in an interview that he would love for the Sedins to play for the Leafs. As a Canuck, the slightest bit of provocation caused GM Mike Gillis to do everything in his power to give his team an advantage. He filed tampering charges with the NHL.  Here is NHL Commisioner Daley's statement on the NHL's Findings:

 

"I confirm the following:
 
"That Ron Wilson, Head Coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs, violated the provisions of NHL By-Law 15 relating to inappropriate public comments by speaking generally to his Club's potential interest in negotiating with Daniel and Henrik Sedin prior to such time as those players' existing contracts with Vancouver had expired. The League has imposed a fine on the Maple Leafs' organization as a result;
 
"That after a thorough investigation of all the relevant facts and circumstances, the League has found no evidence whatsoever to support Vancouver's broader concerns that the Toronto Maple Leafs' organization may have engaged in any other conduct or activities vis-à-vis the Sedins that were in contravention of the League's rules or policies relating to tampering;
 
"That while unfortunate and inappropriate, the inclusion of a brief reference to the names of a pair of current Vancouver Canucks players in a television segment that aired once on Leafs TV last week did not constitute a tampering offense under League rules, and that no League action will be taken, or League sanction imposed on the Maple Leafs' organization as a result.
 

The mere mention by Wilson of interest in the Sedins was enough to net the Leafs a fine. While they eventually signed with the Canucks you can imagine Burke had signed them instead of Gustavsson on July 1st 2009 they'd have investigated more heavily, and I'd be short one ulcer. 
 
Since you never know with the NHL the penalty for any tampering could range from a fine, to some form of compensation to the Ducks, to the forfeit of a draft pick. So, if true, there could be some negative consequences for the Leafs.
 

Question The Third: Will it Come to That?

Probably not. If the Ducks cannot re-sign Schultz by the 22nd of June other teams may begin to negotiate with him but not sign him until the 1st. As many have speculated if they believe they will lose him for nothing they will try to trade his rights to an interested party. So long as the Ducks receive some compensation for him I doubt they'd pursue tampering charges. I'm not going to speculate about what it would cost, but it wouldn't be much. If Burke does give Murray something for Schultz's rights I'd expect the tampering charges to go away. 

Final Question: Why All the Fuss Over This Kid?

As the article on Bucky's 5th Quarter points out, Schultz is ready to make the jump to the NHL full-time. Here are some Tweets to get you all a twitter:

 

Next to Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, Schultz may be most sought after UFA this summer. Blue chip, Top 4 offensive defenceman prospect. -Bob McKenzie

 

To add a little On Justin Schultz. NHL ready & a player I feel could be like Drew Doughty. Dynamic & controls game. -Craig Button 

 

I'm not sure how this is all going to play out. My hope: Burke and Murray work out a deal for Schultz's rights and he signs before July 1st. 

 

Adee23d0b334ca779a67241f0495d0fc
Danny once met Doug Gilmour and it changed his life. Had he met Bret Hart the same day he would not have been able to handle it. He can be found on Twitter @ACatNamedFelix.
Avatar
#1 JP Nikota
May 28 2012, 06:18PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
0
props

Gary Bettman can impose any kind of fine or penalty that he deems appropriate, but he can also presumably go about investigating/assessing in any way he sees fit.

Perhaps circumstantial evidence is all that would be required for penalties to be administered. It's not as though the league is obliged to operate in a democratic or transparent manner. It's impossible to say what it would take for changes to be upheld.

Avatar
#2 george
May 29 2012, 12:17AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
0
props

Where's the evidence? The Ducks are just pissed that they're going to lose him for nothing. Maybe they should have signed him before he became such a hot commodity.

Avatar
#3 CoolJ90
May 29 2012, 07:58AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
0
props

It's not so simple for the Ducks to trade Schultz. According to Anaheim Calling, the Ducks would need the consent of Schultz to be traded. So it is possible that the Ducks could trade him, but there is also the possibility that he doesn't want to play for the Ducks, but also hasn't made up his mind as to where he wants to play. If that is the case, then the Ducks will surely lose him for nothing.

Regardless of how it goes down, I would be pretty excited if the Leafs were able to nab this guy.

Comments are closed for this article.