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Rock Hard



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PostPosted: 10/12/20 1:39 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo wrote:
Why the WNBA salary cap might be the Seattle Storm's most challenging opponent

So let's say we give Bird & Howard supermax and Clark regular max. Assuming we cut Langhorne & Tuck, that still only leaves us with about $120k left. And that can't all go to just one player, such as Whitcomb – that would only put us at 10 players.

Quote:
One WNBA team executive speculated that Whitcomb could be in line for an offer sheet starting north of $150,000 per season, which would put her well out of the Storm's price range if the starting five returns intact.


No way of knowing how it'll all play out. But after reading that tidbit, it's all but a given that not everyone of value will be able to come back. I wouldn't blame the org. at all for, say, coring Howard with the sole intention of trading her, for example.

Quote:
Richard Cohen of HerHoopsStats.com, who provided all the salary data for this piece

💯

Yeah, when I read that ESPN article and saw that he referenced Richyyy's data I was like way to go one of Rebkell's best on ESPN! Very Happy



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Richyyy



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PostPosted: 10/12/20 1:41 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

You guys realise that Mr Pelton is also a member here, right? He just has better things to do than hang out and argue over nonsense with us basement-dwellers most of the time Wink.



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Rock Hard



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PostPosted: 10/12/20 1:57 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
You guys realise that Mr Pelton is also a member here, right? He just has better things to do than hang out and argue over nonsense with us basement-dwellers most of the time Wink.

Now Richyyy, you know that one member here hates the B-word. This person is still angry with Coach Miller for that moniker. Laughing



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TDAO



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PostPosted: 10/12/20 2:15 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Quote:
You guys realise that Mr Pelton is also a member here, right?

A member for longer than you, even!


craigmont



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PostPosted: 10/12/20 3:15 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
craigmont wrote:
Interesting stuff. If you core Howard, you have to super-max her. If you don't, the most anyone can offer her is the 'regular' max? Am I understanding that right?

The core designation comes with an automatic one-year supermax offer, but the team and player are free to negotiate a lower and/or longer deal if they want to. The core designation then sticks to that player for the length of the deal, unless the player is traded/waived/retires. Coring a player blocks them from negotiating or signing with anyone else.

The most any other team can offer regardless is the standard max, hence the move we saw last season from DeWanna Bonner where she was a true UFA but got Connecticut to sign-and-trade for her anyway, because that was the only way she could get the supermax.

Max next year is $190,550, supermax is $221,450, just for reference.


So there's not a huge difference between the max and the supermax. Thanks for that.

I'm not that into salary-crunching, but do you think there are too many good players in the league for all of them to get the max under the cap?

Is a max or supermax player a cornerstone to build a team around, and if so, does Howard fit that definition? I hate it, but if we had to pick one of Clark, Howard, and Whitcomb to lose, Magbegor and Russell can fill in for Howard.


Richyyy



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PostPosted: 10/12/20 3:32 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

craigmont wrote:
Richyyy wrote:
craigmont wrote:
Interesting stuff. If you core Howard, you have to super-max her. If you don't, the most anyone can offer her is the 'regular' max? Am I understanding that right?

The core designation comes with an automatic one-year supermax offer, but the team and player are free to negotiate a lower and/or longer deal if they want to. The core designation then sticks to that player for the length of the deal, unless the player is traded/waived/retires. Coring a player blocks them from negotiating or signing with anyone else.

The most any other team can offer regardless is the standard max, hence the move we saw last season from DeWanna Bonner where she was a true UFA but got Connecticut to sign-and-trade for her anyway, because that was the only way she could get the supermax.

Max next year is $190,550, supermax is $221,450, just for reference.


So there's not a huge difference between the max and the supermax. Thanks for that.

I'm not that into salary-crunching, but do you think there are too many good players in the league for all of them to get the max under the cap?

Is a max or supermax player a cornerstone to build a team around, and if so, does Howard fit that definition? I hate it, but if we had to pick one of Clark, Howard, and Whitcomb to lose, Magbegor and Russell can fill in for Howard.

30k difference between the two maxes is a lot more than it used to be (it was $2,500 in the previous CBA). No one used to care about the difference, but as Bonner illustrated last year, now it's enough to care.

I wrote about the changes under the new deal and how not every good vet can get the max any more - https://herhoopstats.substack.com/p/beware-the-coming-wnba-cap-crunch . Basically, teams used to be able to carry at least six max players, whereas now it's more like four. Teams have to think about how much they're handing out and who it's going to a bit more than they used to.

Whitcomb, much as I like her, is much more replaceable than an All-World defensive post who can also get you double-digit points and 8 rebounds a night. Howard's also comfortably the youngest of their free agents. The more I think about it, the more I think they'll core her. Even if she does want to leave, Diggins-Smith and Bonner both got three first-round picks for their previous teams last offseason.



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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 10/12/20 11:40 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Assuming everyone wants to come back (and assuming we don't even consider re-signing Prince), I'm guessing we'd let Whitcomb walk first, since she's more replaceable due to both playing the most common position of shooting guard and being a bench player. We needed her in our 2018 playoff run, but not so much in this year's due to Loyd stepping up her game. If she wants to come back, she'd most likely be the one taking the biggest "pay cut" (by not signing with a team that would hand $150k over to her) in order to fit herself in. She'll never be a starter on this team with Loyd around, so she probably has higher value elsewhere. Though the same sentiment arguably applies to Howard, she at least is a starter (and sometimes even has to play starter-level minutes Wink ).



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Richyyy



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PostPosted: 10/12/20 11:59 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Where would Whitcomb start, though? I could feasibly see her being Quigley-esque given the minutes and things going right, but when you go through the teams most of the vaguely plausible options have several other cap priorities of their own already. And usually players who'd already be ahead of her. Then, given that, is someone giving her 150k to come off the bench and score 8ppg?

Again, I really like Sami Whitcomb. But this is still a 12-team league, and these things always seem a lot more plausible before we start trying to get down to specifics. Almost seems equally plausible to me that Bird plays for 200k-ish, Clark takes 170k-ish, and the extra 40k of space is enough to talk Whitcomb into it. But we'll see. If Kevin talked to a WNBA GM who said she could get 150, then maybe that's because that person is thinking of giving her 150. It only takes one...



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Michelle89



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PostPosted: 10/13/20 8:07 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I wouldnt be suprised that if Birdy decides to come back for 1 more run (months before the season) that she will sign for less then super max if that would keep Howard and Clark.

If the Storm organisation is certain that Stewie will stay and doesnt need to be cored then core Howard for multiple years but less then super max. She is a great player but she is not a true superstar in this league..



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Shades



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PostPosted: 10/13/20 10:12 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Michelle89 wrote:
I wouldnt be suprised that if Birdy decides to come back for 1 more run (months before the season)


I’d be shocked if she didn’t come back. She’s eyeing one more Olympics. All bets are off after that.

Michelle89 wrote:
that she will sign for less then super max if that would keep Howard and Clark.


That would be wisest. Oldest is often the wisest (except in this forum Wink), so my guess is Bird won’t hurt the team’s chances at long term success just so she can make $20K-$30K more in her last season.

Same goes for Taurasi. Of course, her situation is slightly different since she’s not on a proven championship team.

Michelle89 wrote:
If the Storm organization is certain that Stewie will stay and doesnt need to be cored then core Howard for multiple years but less then super max. She is a great player but she is not a true superstar in this league..


Stewart is already signed for next season. If Howard needs to be cored, that could make things tricky, because as far as I know, coring has always meant automatic max. There were rumblings that Charles was willing to take less than max last year, but who knows if those were true. My feeling is a player gets cored if the GM isn’t totally sure if that player will stay without being cored. I don’t believe Howard would want to go to another team, but I felt that way about Bonner this season. Difference is SEA is built for a dynasty run if you like that kind of thing.

My estimates for UFA salaries go something like this for an 11 player roster:
Whitcomb $115,000 (Tucks’s money)
Clark $190,500
Howard and Bird split the rest at around $197,000 ea.

If Howard needs supermax, then maybe you can get Clark to sign for $175,000 and Bird for $190,500.

If Whitcomb went away, it would help with the money crunch. Any chance she signs for vet minimum? I could see Reeve peeking her way if other options don’t pan out.



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PostPosted: 10/13/20 10:30 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
The core designation comes with an automatic one-year supermax offer, but the team and player are free to negotiate a lower and/or longer deal if they want to.



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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 10/13/20 2:26 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

No idea how Howard's own situation will play out. Maybe she's satisfied with having not 1, not 2, but 3 titles to her name; and now wants to be a first option and compete for an MVP award, which she'll never do in Seattle with Stewart around. At the same time, I can also imagine her being content to take a backseat to Stewart for the rest of her career – so long as the price is right. She's definitely not worth the supermax (maybe not even regular max) if she stays in Seattle 'long'-term. Still, I'd lean towards coring her this one time and figuring out the rest – whether it's giving her the one-year supermax, signing her to a cheaper multi-year deal (I highly doubt Stewart goes anywhere in 2022 so long as we offer her the supermax), or feeling out her trade value (which I'm also somewhat curious about). Imo blocking her from negotiating with other teams carries its own value, too.

mavcarter wrote:
Richyyy wrote:
The core designation comes with an automatic one-year supermax offer, but the team and player are free to negotiate a lower and/or longer deal if they want to.

Laughing Laughing Laughing I'm guilty of not having reading comprehension sometimes, but at least I'm not too ashamed to admit it. Mr. Green



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Michelle89



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PostPosted: 10/14/20 4:04 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Shades wrote:
Michelle89 wrote:
I wouldnt be suprised that if Birdy decides to come back for 1 more run (months before the season)


I’d be shocked if she didn’t come back. She’s eyeing one more Olympics. All bets are off after that.

Michelle89 wrote:
that she will sign for less then super max if that would keep Howard and Clark.


That would be wisest. Oldest is often the wisest (except in this forum Wink), so my guess is Bird won’t hurt the team’s chances at long term success just so she can make $20K-$30K more in her last season.

Same goes for Taurasi. Of course, her situation is slightly different since she’s not on a proven championship team.

Michelle89 wrote:
If the Storm organization is certain that Stewie will stay and doesnt need to be cored then core Howard for multiple years but less then super max. She is a great player but she is not a true superstar in this league..


Stewart is already signed for next season. If Howard needs to be cored, that could make things tricky, because as far as I know, coring has always meant automatic max. There were rumblings that Charles was willing to take less than max last year, but who knows if those were true. My feeling is a player gets cored if the GM isn’t totally sure if that player will stay without being cored. I don’t believe Howard would want to go to another team, but I felt that way about Bonner this season. Difference is SEA is built for a dynasty run if you like that kind of thing.

My estimates for UFA salaries go something like this for an 11 player roster:
Whitcomb $115,000 (Tucks’s money)
Clark $190,500
Howard and Bird split the rest at around $197,000 ea.

If Howard needs supermax, then maybe you can get Clark to sign for $175,000 and Bird for $190,500.

If Whitcomb went away, it would help with the money crunch. Any chance she signs for vet minimum? I could see Reeve peeking her way if other options don’t pan out.


The wouldnt be suprised part is about her taking less then super max and not about being back for 1 more year (if healthy). Taurasi has signed on for less in the past to help the team so i could see that happening again if that increases their chances for a championship.

I know that Stewie is signed for next season but after that she will be a free agent. So like Richyyy said if you core Howard for 1 year then they are both free agents at the same time. You dont want that so hopefully Stewie has made it clear that she wants to stay with the Storm for many more years so that she doesnt need to be cored and they can core Howard and sign her for multiple years and less then super max.



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PostPosted: 10/14/20 12:03 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Shades wrote:


That would be wisest. Oldest is often the wisest (except in this forum Wink),

.


Just so you know, I resent that comment. Wink



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PostPosted: 10/14/20 11:27 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Does Howard seem like a Bonner-esque trade candidate?

I could see a lot of up and coming teams with cap space being willing to pay her the super max while giving up a lottery pick and a decent young player for a potential top 10 player in Howard (if she returns to close to her 18 or 19 form) with championship experience

Seattle could save money , pay everyone else without pushing for a discount, expect Magbegor or Russell to be ready to take the leap as full-time starter next season and get some young cheaper assets in return for the post Bird (21) future, while also saving the core spot and a super max deal for Stewart in 21.


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PostPosted: 10/15/20 10:24 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

J-Spoon wrote:
Does Howard seem like a Bonner-esque trade candidate?

Yes. Confused I hope we core her, on the off-chance she (unlike Bonner) is actually willing to sign with another team for less than $200k. Cuz if we had to trade her away, at least the return should produce some cheap talent that'll keep our bench deep for the next few years.



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cass



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PostPosted: 10/19/20 4:47 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

This is a little in between topics, but I've been watching the 2004 championship run the past couple days and it's really wild to see such a young Sue Bird. Plus watching Betty Lennox carry the team is a delight and also forgotten surprise--then you've got Nykesha Sales and a brilliant rookie Lindsey Whalen on the Sun. Such a close championship--you have to wonder how things would have ended in a best of 5.

As a Storm/WNBA fan for only about the last 10 years or so, it's really fun to get to watch another incarnation of this team and also to see how much the game has changed. Here's the youtube link if anyone else is looking for something to watch (not the best quality but full of all the fun WNBA promos & such): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QaM5NlqGi7c


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PostPosted: 10/21/20 9:44 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Storm endorse Biden/Harris. Probably not much of a surprise.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/wnba/storm/2020/10/21/joe-biden-kamala-harris-get-support-wnba-champion-seattle-storm/3722503001/



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PostPosted: 11/09/20 9:59 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Latest (and penultimate) in our team-by-team review/preview series, including cap details and analysis by me, and lots of other good stuff by... also me.

https://herhoopstats.substack.com/p/wnba-seattle-storm-2020-2021-review-salary-cap

P.S. As mentioned previously here and elsewhere, the information on Tuck's (and Langhorne's) contract has been double- and triple-checked, with multiple sources. It's not guaranteed for 2021. Or at least if it is, the league's own database is wrong.



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Force10rulz



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PostPosted: 12/13/20 1:23 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo wrote:
No idea how Howard's own situation will play out. Maybe she's satisfied with having not 1, not 2, but 3 titles to her name; and now wants to be a first option and compete for an MVP award, which she'll never do in Seattle with Stewart around. At the same time, I can also imagine her being content to take a backseat to Stewart for the rest of her career – so long as the price is right. She's definitely not worth the supermax (maybe not even regular max) if she stays in Seattle 'long'-term. Still, I'd lean towards coring her this one time and figuring out the rest – whether it's giving her the one-year supermax, signing her to a cheaper multi-year deal (I highly doubt Stewart goes anywhere in 2022 so long as we offer her the supermax), or feeling out her trade value (which I'm also somewhat curious about). Imo blocking her from negotiating with other teams carries its own value, too.

mavcarter wrote:
Richyyy wrote:
The core designation comes with an automatic one-year supermax offer, but the team and player are free to negotiate a lower and/or longer deal if they want to.

Laughing Laughing Laughing I'm guilty of not having reading comprehension sometimes, but at least I'm not too ashamed to admit it. Mr. Green


Trade Stewie? They’d be nuts if they did that, there is no player out there as good as Stewie, ok a few as as good, but no one had had the success that she has. She wants to win she’s going to do whatever is in her power to do so. She’s got the bling to show it too.



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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 12/24/20 3:40 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo's Realistic(?) Christmas Wishlist for the Storm's #11 Pick in the 2021 Draft

In the midst of updating my 2021 Draft prospects lists, I once again got to thinking about who I think the Storm should, and also will, draft at #11, assuming they keep it (but who would want it this year, hmm?). I'm assuming several prospects will be unavailable (due to being taken earlier in the Draft or not declaring for the Draft at all), such as Collier, Guirantes, Mack, and Davis. I'm also assuming the Storm retains their most important free agents like they plan to (Bird, Howard, and Clark). Even though it's such a fruitless endeavor this offseason, since there are more moving parts than ever, here I am jotting my thoughts down & sharing them anyway. Hope you all have a good end to the Holiday season.

#1: Shyla Heal – PG, Australia. I have begrudgingly accepted that the Storm will go after prospects they can draft-and-stash, since A) they have the past two drafts now, and B) a deferral pick makes the most sense this year; as title-defenders, they out of all the League's teams need to develop players the least and be in win-now mode the most. Heal and Magbegor being on the team can motivate each other to show up season after season, and carry over any chemistry they develop within the Storm to the Australian national team. Too, she can back-up Jordin Canada or even potentially challenge her for the starting PG spot once Sue Bird retires. Canada could (eventually) use some competition, as her shooting level is still unacceptable for where it should be now that she'll be entering her 4th season as a pro. The timing of it all will be interesting, as this will also be the last year of Canada's rookie contract, where she might be looking to get paid afterwards. But if Heal's unavailable...

#2: Destiny Slocum – PG, Arkansas. The PNW-born Slocum gets the nod from me here. Though she isn't as speedy as Canada, she has a 'jitterbug' nature about her (imo) and can score at all three levels, while at the same time has plenty of experience controlling different offenses (she's on her third program, after all). Through 10 games, she's shooting 50% from the field and has an excellent ATO of 3.1. This is the year to take a guard in the late 1st-round, so out of all the collegiate PG prospects, Slocum seems like the best fit for the Storm. Having seen more of her than Heal, I think Slocum could definitely challenge Canada for her spot in the rotation given her offensive skillset – though there might be enough roster space for the both of them, so it would make for good competition in practice. Considering Bird's fragility, having two other PGs on even an 11-player roster wouldn't be a bad idea.

#3: Evina Westbrook – G, Connecticut. Another PNW product, being from Oregon. Generally speaking, I don't want to take a guard who isn't a true point guard in the 1st round, but I'd make an exception for Westbrook. They just train 'em differently at UConn, and Westbrook really has enough size and skill to back up all three perimeter positions. I'm thinking the redshirt junior declares and ends up having a low-key enough season (what, with her backcourt mate Paige Bueckers getting all the attention) to where it keeps her available through this point in the Draft – she's not even averaging 10 ppg at the moment. She could easily usurp Kitija Laksa for a roster spot if that's what it came down to.

#4: Michaela Onyenwere – F, UCLA. It was between her and Didi Richards here. Ultimately, Richards is more likely between the two to be available in the 2nd round (where we have multiple picks). Anywho, the Storm are/should still be searching for a good back-up for Alysha Clark – it ain't Morgan Tuck or Kitija Laksa, I can tell you that. Clark and Onyenwere are both undersized for the SF position, but that's where the similarities end. Unlike Clark, Onyenwere is athletic, a little more offense-oriented, and a great rebounder for her size. She'd be a great complementary SF to Clark, who can teach her how to convert herself from a collegiate undersized post player to a professional full-time wing player. Plus, Onyenwere and Canada played together a bit at UCLA, so that would make for a nice reunion. (Not sure how long it would last, though!)

#5: Awak Kuier – C, Finland. This is the only other international deferral pick I would be okay with the Storm taking in the 1st round (they can take whoever else after the 1st round is over). Heck, as far as I'm concerned, she'd be allowed to come over and play for us this year, taking Langhorne's spot. If Kuier has significantly fewer availability concerns than the average international prospect, then let's do it. Full disclosure: I don't know her game well, particularly how similar she is to Magbegor, but even if they're terribly similar, we could make it work. We don't have enough of a pre-existing French presence on the team to take Iliana Rupert in the hopes that she'll show up, even if Rupert is considered better than Kuier.



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PostPosted: 12/24/20 4:46 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Problem with draft-and-stash is that once you're barely fitting your key players under the cap, you need the rest to be cheap. And one of the best ways to get someone cheap who might be half-decent is your first-round pick. I think they may well want that player to actually be on the roster this year.



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PostPosted: 12/24/20 5:38 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
Problem with draft-and-stash is that once you're barely fitting your key players under the cap, you need the rest to be cheap. And one of the best ways to get someone cheap who might be half-decent is your first-round pick. I think they may well want that player to actually be on the roster this year.

Which makes it that much more of a shame that we didn't just keep our #7 Pick last Draft and use it on a collegiate player instead of getting a Morgan Tuck-Kitija Laksa shit sandwich. Rolling Eyes This is the year to take a deferral pick talent-wise, but you're right, we need cheap players to get to 11. Although, I haven't discounted the possibility that we'll draft deferral picks anyway and instead fill out our roster with free agents on vet-min one-year deals who simply want to title-chase and don't mind getting absolutely low-balled. It would work better with the win-now strategy than keeping rookies of the same cost on the roster who wouldn't necessarily be able to immediately contribute in 2021 if/when called upon.

Bird: let's say the $221450 supermax
Stewart: $190550
Howard: let's say Stewart's $190550 (perhaps an underestimation)
Clark: let's again say $190550 (perhaps an overestimation)
Loyd: $121500
Canada: $70040
Russell: $70040
Laksa: $63751
Magbegor: $58710

That's nine spots. If the guessed numbers combined are anywhere near accurate (or at least not terribly underestimated – just don't give Howard anything too far past $200k), and assuming my math is correct, that leaves two spots at somewhere around $75k-80k each, or at the very least enough to clear the vet-min hurdle of $70040 each. Hopefully Magbegor plans on showing up, as her & her contract would be super helpful. Maybe we sign Whitcomb using one of those spots, since she would be making more than she did last season in virtually the exact same role. If not, maybe Prince again, who knows. Even excluding them, I have to think there will be at least two free agents out there who would sign up for that contract, having a deep-bench role on a legit title contender. Valavanis just needs to have the wherewithal to kick both Langhorne & Tuck to the curb – moves I'm not yet convinced she'll make.



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Richyyy



Joined: 17 Nov 2005
Posts: 22682
Location: London


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PostPosted: 12/24/20 7:02 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I'm not convinced Laksa makes the roster to be honest, assuming they bring in any remotely meaningful competition (even on rookie minimums). Your numbers are plausible, generally speaking, although I think Howard will have multiple teams willing to pay her the supermax (which would require a trade, or Seattle coughing it up). Regardless, they definitely could get down to your total via some combination of whatever Bird/Howard/Clark take.

And yes, virtually every sensible scenario I've mapped out for Seattle requires dumping Langhorne and Tuck beforehand. Although I suppose it's then plausible that one could come back at the vet minimum if they were willing to play for that.



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Stormeo



Joined: 14 Jul 2019
Posts: 1973
Location: Seattle, WA


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PostPosted: 12/24/20 7:57 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
I'm not convinced Laksa makes the roster to be honest, assuming they bring in any remotely meaningful competition (even on rookie minimums). Your numbers are plausible, generally speaking, although I think Howard will have multiple teams willing to pay her the supermax (which would require a trade, or Seattle coughing it up). Regardless, they definitely could get down to your total via some combination of whatever Bird/Howard/Clark take.

And yes, virtually every sensible scenario I've mapped out for Seattle requires dumping Langhorne and Tuck beforehand. Although I suppose it's then plausible that one could come back at the vet minimum if they were willing to play for that.

Lord, I hope Laksa doesn't make the roster. They ought to cut her 'now' before investing any more time/energy into her. Like I said, Westbrook (any of these guards really) could take her place easily. If Whitcomb somehow comes back, Laksa becomes even more irrelevant.

I expect Bird to not take a pay cut and get the supermax, but it would be a pleasant surprise to see her get signed to something not as high. The order of how the front office will go about trying to re-sign the starters could be interesting to track. I also expect Clark to maybe get 'overpaid' in some people's eyes. She's been underpaid on this team for multiple years now, so again, I think she'll rightfully get something around the normal max amount – a slight overpay, but not by much. If she'll accept a 2- or even a 3-year deal, let's do it. She shows up every year, keeps herself in great shape, and just turned in her best season despite entering her mid-30s. It might get a little interesting if she'll only accept a 4-year deal, but I'd be inclined to let her have it, albeit at smaller annual numbers.

The key to everything this year is Howard not demanding the supermax. She has no right getting paid that, considering her supporting role on this team with Stewart around. On another team in a first-option type of role? Sure. At least we'll be able to offer her that normal max amount that other teams can offer her as a free agent. Thinking about it in those terms, we probably don't need to core her, but I'll understand either way. If it's the supermax she's after, then a trade simply has to happen whether she's cored or not (at least we'd get something back); I don't want us to recklessly sign Howard to that and then risk having to low-ball Clark in a "here's what we have left" scenario, pissing her off and getting her to walk. Both are similarly vital to the team. But out of all the scenarios, I think Howard not getting cored and then subsequently walking is least likely. Realistically, I'm also not worried about Stewart walking in 2022 if we're unable to core Stewart (ie if the core spot is used up by a multiyear deal from 2021).



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