Da Costa flying to Toronto today, should sign this week

Stephane Da Costa is flying to Toronto this morning to meet with his agents Wade Arnott and Ed Ward. A decision on his NHL future is likely to come this week.

Da Costa has been scouted by at least 20 NHL teams over the past two seasons. According to sources, Ottawa, Florida and Minnesota are the favorites to land the Merrimack center with Philadelphia, St. Louis, Nashville, Boston, Pittsburgh, Toronto and Vancouver among potential long shots.

Da Costa’s contract will follow the same structure as those in the 2010 entry draft under the NHL’s CBA, meaning he’ll earn a $900,000 base salary and is eligibly for up to $2.85 million in bonuses. Unless there is an NHL CBA extension by July 1, all player bonuses count on next year’s salary cap, meaning his cap hit next season would be $3.75 million, if he signs a deal with the full bonus structure that is currently in place.


Da Costa is traveling to Toronto today to meet with his agent and the process of negotiating with NHL clubs will begin tomorrow. The process is expected to take a few days.


  1. Wow, that will be tough for him to see significant NHL time next year if that situation falls into place. Not sure there are too many teams that would take a cap hit like that. I assume that's why teams like Ottawa are the front runners, since they will have cap space in case that situation with the CBA plays out. Makes it difficult for a team like the Bruins with their salaries pretty well locked in for next season.

  2. Best of luck to Stephane. I've groused in the past about early departures– mostly when I thought someone was following unrealistic NHL hopes. This is not the case here; and with the injury this season, I'm sure it's even more apparent that anyone's hockey career can end at any moment, and it makes sense for a player to take advantage of the opportunities on offer. It's a shame he couldn't lead us to some championship hardware, but I know it wasn't for a lack of effort from him.

    Again, best of luck. I'll be watching, wherever he ends up.

  3. I dunno about Loprieno, I think he's made a good name for himself in Sharks organization…the others however I can't speak for

  4. “Worth it” is probably relative. For ME, worth it would be how much cash eventually ended up in my pocket. For others, 1 NHL game is worth it. We've had a mixed bag. Success on all accounts: Classen, McKenna. Qualified success: Foy, Scoville. Too soon to tell: Loprieno. Too bad: Aquino, Caron, Jones, Poirier, State.

    I've seen Loprieno play a few times this year and, while he doesn't look out of place and has improved, he's not one of the Shark's top-4 D. He's still young(ish) and big so the jury's still out.

  5. Well, “worth it” means different things to different people. Since NCAA players at best receive scholarships, it's possible that even a good minor league deal is “worth it” in that sense. Any chance, even a small one, of an NHL career might well be tagged “worth it”.

    I meant something more like balancing the good that can be done to the NCAA program, to the players, to the fans, and to the pro franchises. When a legitimate star leaves an NCAA program to turn pro, it can be “worth it” from almost any perspective you take. Sure, the NCAA program loses that player, but a high profile student-athlete raises awareness of the school he played for, is embarking on a lucrative career, and providing entertainment for pro hockey fans while also benefiting his employer. In some of these cases you can also make the argument that a player has little else to do at the NCAA level, either because the competition and training cannot drive his abilities any further, and/or because he has achieved everything there is to achieve at that level. A player that wins one or more league championships, national championships, and an award like the Hobey Baker as an underclassman I think is inarguably justified in jumping ship a year early: there's nothing left for him to do, and I think no more can reasonably be asked of him by his institution or their fans.

    However, when a good player on a bad team logs a lot of ice time, scores a fair number of goals, but wins nothing of consequence and makes himself known to NHL scouts but hardly anyone else outside the institution, never plays in a single NHL game and ends up in the ECHL, then I think maybe it wasn't worth it. If you score half as many goals in 40+ minor league games than you did in 30 NCAA games, then maybe another year or two of college play might have helped. If you never make the NHL, your college program doesn't benefit from your departure. In this case, the financial benefit to the player is the only one that can be quantified. In many of these cases, yes, it is “worth it” for the player– who is the only one who gets to make the decision anyway.

    I guess what I mean is that for some players, I think it's possible everyone would have been better off if they had stayed a year or two more. I think in the case of Da Costa and players like him, the school would benefit more than the player if he had chosen to stay.

    Anyway, I'm watching the newswires to see if there's any announcement. Hopefully we'll see him in an NHL game soon, because next season can't start early enough.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.