This is how he looks at the negotiations with the Red Wings

Moritz Seider recently said that they had “given away too many games” this season. “We’re 4-0 up, then you look at the scoreboard afterwards and it’s 4-4. Two days later, we are leading 3-0, but suddenly we are 3-4 behind. Things like that shouldn’t happen,” said the German national ice hockey player from the Detroit Red Wings. But on Tuesday evening (local time) it happened again, when the team from the North American professional league NHL lost a lead against the Tampa Bay Lightning and lost 4:5.

However, there is no sign of Moritz Seider being in a bad mood. He’s pretty happy with how things are going for him in the strongest ice hockey league in the world: “It’s no secret that I feel incredibly comfortable in Detroit and have built a house.” He likes the team, the club is the ” coolest one there is, with an incredible amount of history and legends.” Maybe he’ll become one himself.

Big contract beckons

Seider is one of the main reasons why the young Red Wings are in a play-off spot despite all the wasted points. At just 22 years old, he is their defense chief, gets the most ice time, plays both outnumbered and outnumbered and whenever the opponents bring in their top strikers. That was the case in his debut season in the NHL, after which he became the first German to be voted rookie of the year.

Seider is now considered one of the best 25 defensemen in the NHL. And there it will soon be payday for him. His three-year entry-level contract expires in the summer, and his next one could be the biggest ever signed by a German professional ice hockey player. Perhaps better paid than that of top strikers Leon Draisaitl (around 7.8 million euros annual salary) and Tim Stützle (around 7.7 million).

There is only one problem: the salary cap. It has existed in the NHL since 2005, following tough collective bargaining between team owners and the players’ union. This dragged on for months and the entire 2004/05 season was canceled.

“It will be a tough fight”

In the end, the bosses prevailed, and since then the income has been divided equally. Because income is constantly increasing, each club now has 83.5 million US dollars (around 77 million euros) at its disposal; next season the so-called salary cap is expected to rise to 87.7 million (81 million euros). “I think most people see this as good news,” NHL boss Gary Bettman said recently when announcing the number.

This is also good news for Seider. So he’s looking forward to the summer and to “interesting conversations” with Red Wings manager Steve Yzerman. “I don’t think Steve will just open his wallet and hand out million-dollar deals; it will be a tough fight,” says Seider, who, however, has “a lot of confidence” that “I’ll play for Detroit again next season.”

Seider wants the middle ground

In the best case scenario, not just in the coming years. At the age of 22, he wants to extend his contract in the long term; according to the collective agreement, up to eight years is possible. Of course, Seider also wants to “get the most out of it” financially. The time as an NHL professional is “very limited, everyone deserves every single cent they negotiate. That’s something you should be proud of.”

However, Seider also knows that it can be worthwhile to accommodate the club. If individual stars earn too much, there is not enough left for the rest. So every top player in the NHL is faced with the question: Do I look at myself or the big picture? Tim Stützle, the other young German star, also experienced this, signing with the Ottawa Senators for $8.35 million a year – although more could have been possible.

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“I think if someone gets ten or eleven million, it will be difficult with the salary cap,” Stützle told The Athletic. For him it’s about team success. Whether he earns one or two million more is secondary, he has enough to last a lifetime.

Seider also wants to “find a middle ground” in the negotiations with Detroit. You can’t fight the season alone, you need a good team around you. But he doesn’t want to play at a discount price either, he wants to be able to say afterwards: “I earn enough, I can imagine a super relaxed life after ice hockey.” That should work.


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