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PECA'S NO SUPERSTAR

When in someone's wildest dreams does a 21-goal, 20-assist season deserve a $3 million raise?

Michael Peca is not a superstar; he isn't even an above average player. Hard checker (cheap shots)? He is one of the reasons hockey has become such a dull, boring professional sport.

To make the kind of money he wants, Michael has to be a game-breaker, one who the other team fears. Like Perreault and LaFontaine, for example. Peca rates with the Brian Spencers and other fourth-line luminaries of the past.

Athletes should be paid top-shelf money, but nowhere near the amount they receive. Arbitrators should be hung out to dry for the amount of money they award. You pay on past performance and future hope.

If the players get an enormous raise for a good season, then they should be also cut in salary for a nonproductive season. None of this going-rate garbage.

By the way, how many more junior and minor-league scorers are the Sabres going to change to defensive players? Players have initiative and aggressiveness taken away when they reach the NHL. The fans don't want wingers that skate up and down their wing and are strong corner men. Goals are not scored from corners. Don't draft big guys who couldn't score into the Niagara River. Bring offense back.
DAVID SZUKALA
North Tonawanda

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