Isn’t it ironic? Andreas Athanasiou is as fast as a bolt of lightning on the ice, but as slow as molasses in contract negotiations. Well, the wait is finally over as the Wings have signed Athanasiou to a 1-year deal worth $1.387M.
DET and RFA forward Andreas Athanasiou have agreed to terms on a one-year contract worth $1.387M.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) October 20, 2017
Over the course of these intense contract talks, Double-A threatened to head to the KHL and has started skating with Lugano HC in Switzerland. With the Canadian Olympic team an option for Double-A, many were not sure how this would end up. One of the main reasons this stalemate took so long was that Athanasiou was pushing for more money per year. However, Ken Holland didn’t cave to a kid with no arbitration rights and little to no leverage. But now, with this being a 1-year deal, AA will head into next off season with arbitration rights and more leverage. That should make things even more interesting, with the likes of Dylan Larkin, Anthony Mantha, and Petr Mrazek all needing new deals next season as well.
However, there is an asterisk to all of this. Detroit will first have to make a cap move for this deal to be finalized, whether it’s via trade or waivers, in order to remain cap compliant. Possible names that could be on the move to make that happen include Riley Sheahan, who has been in numorous trade rumors, and Luke Witkowski can be an option to be placed on waivers.