Red Wings Sign Blueliner Rafalski

The Detroit Red Wings announced the the signing of defenseman Brian Rafalski on Sunday, just hours after Mathieu Schneider left the team to sign with the Anaheim Ducks.

Rafalski, a Dearborn native, had spent his entire eight-year NHL career with the New Jersey Devils, signing with them as a free agent in 1999 and playing on their 2000 and 2003 Stanley Cup Championship teams.

As per club policy, official financial terms were not announced, but TSN of Canada reports that the deal is worth $30 million over five years.

Rafalski is coming off of a career-best year that saw him score eight goals and add 47 assists.

He is a three-time All-Star and won a silver medal with the U.S. Olympic team in 2002.

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Looks like I was right in the Schneider thread, the Wings have signed Brian Rafalski to a five-year, $30 million deal.

That said, I'm surprised about the money and the length of the deal.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 7/1/2007 at 4:10 PM

 

Since I'm way too interested in jersey numbers... Anyone else expect Kopecky to give #28 up to Raffy and then take the #27 that he used to wear before Bootland got it?

Posted by YzerFan19 on 7/1/2007 at 5:08 PM

 

The AP article on DetroitRedWings.com ('cause even though unpaid fans can write their own articles, the official team site just uses stock work) has a quote that I'm happy to hear.


"It was a difficult decision leaving New Jersey, the only team I've known, but I'm coming home to play for the team I grew up watching,'' Rafalski said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "To have this opportunity, is a dream.''


Not too often you hear of someone happy to come to Detroit.Also interesting... Apparently one of the five interested teams offered a six-year, $40 million deal.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 7/1/2007 at 9:09 PM

 

bwahahha. thats awesome he wants to come! who doesnt want to come to the wings?(besides schneider) sorry, i make some bad jokes. x]

i wonder whats going to happen with the whole jersey number thing, but i dont think kopecky should have to give it up. he did earn it in my opinion.

Posted by Mathieu_Datsyuk132351 on 7/1/2007 at 10:33 PM

 

Yeah, I just can't tell if Kopecky has any actual attachment to #28. Some players just wear a number because it was the one assigned to them, not because it has any special meaning. So far, I've seen Kopecky wearing #18 (ten less than 28), #82 (28 reversed), #29 (one more than 28), and #19 in the AHL. He wore #9 in juniors and #27 one preseason in Detroit (and I think he wore #44 in a preseason, too).

In the NHL we don't see it as much but in the other leagues it's not uncommon for an incoming player to buy "his" number off of the player who has it on the new team.

Of course, Rafalski might not have any attachment to #28 and might not even ask for it. He wore #3 for at least one season at Wisconsin but that's not available in Detroit either.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 7/1/2007 at 10:49 PM

 

I split off the number discussion into it's own thread, since that was going way off topic.

On topic...

I bounced the signing off of my Devil-fan boss. She thinks that Raffy was influenced by Scott Gomez. The rumor is that Gomez was basically telling people "you don't want to re-sign with the Devils" or something like it.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 7/2/2007 at 10:05 AM

 

Who would want to play for Lamarillo (sp?). He makes some really crappy decisions.....

Posted by klaitinen on 7/2/2007 at 10:26 AM

 

Yeah, I held back from making fun of my boss ('cause, you know) about that. Devils fans always seemed to talk about Lou like he's the greatest ever (especially during and right after the lockout)... Until Julien was fired and Gomez and Rafalski left. Now they question him, and it seems like the players do too.

Speaking of GMs, I was reading somewhere that one of the TSN(?) analysts called Holland the smartest GM to make a move yesterday. Not that the analysts really know anything but it was cool to see.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 7/2/2007 at 11:31 AM

 

Ya... I'm not too happy with the Devils losing Rafalski and Gomez, but at least Rafalski went to my 2nd favourite team, rather than a division rival like Gomez did, going to the Rangers...

Posted by -Al- on 7/2/2007 at 8:17 PM

 

Yeah, that's gotta suck. Worse, better, or about the same as when Holik did?

I hang out on a family of Ranger sites a lot, one of their concerns was Gomez failing or being misused like Holik was.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 7/2/2007 at 8:30 PM

 

i wonder whats going to happen with the whole jersey number thing, but i dont think kopecky should have to give it up. he did earn it in my opinion.


The Wings' site has been updated with new jersey numbers. Tomas Kopecky switches to #82 with Brian Rafalski taking #28. Dallas Drake takes the #17 vacated by Kyle Calder's depature, with the #28 he wore during his first stint in Detroit now taken and the #11 (Cleary) and #10 (retired for Delvecchio) he has also worn unavailable.The players most likely destined for Grand Rapids haven't been updated.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 8/20/2007 at 4:58 PM

 


i wonder whats going to happen with the whole jersey number thing, but i dont think kopecky should have to give it up. he did earn it in my opinion.


The Wings' site has been updated with new jersey numbers. Tomas Kopecky switches to #82 with Brian Rafalski taking #28. Dallas Drake takes the #17 vacated by Kyle Calder's depature, with the #28 he wore during his first stint in Detroit now taken and the #11 (Cleary) and #10 (retired for Delvecchio) he has also worn unavailable.

Thank you my good sir. =D I haven't gone to the site much after it changed to the crappy template thing xD. I miss having the pictures you clicked on to enter the site, I often used those as my computer backgrounds. T_T And I forgot to save the one of Mathieu! Dx *goes off into a complete rambling session*

Posted by Mathieu_Datsyuk132351 on 8/21/2007 at 10:21 PM

 

A week later, George Malik blogs that Kopecky's new number matches the Euro-style date of his son's February 8 birthday. While that's 2/8 here, it's 8/2 there.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 8/27/2007 at 9:12 PM

 

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