Why Are Washington Capitals Paying Michal Neuvirth More Than Braden Holtby?

Geoff Burke – USA TODAY Sports

Michal Neuvirth is the number two goalie for the Washington Capitals behind Braden Holtby, but you couldn’t tell that by looking at what each of them are getting paid.  Neuvirth was re-signed yesterday to a two year extension worth $5 million ($2.4 million in 2013-14 and $2.6 million in 2014-15) while the Capitals main guy in net, Holtby, was re-signed this past February for only $3.7 million through the 2014-15 season.  I’d say someone got cheated.  Could this be something that actually translates onto the ice?

That remains to be seen.  This is a job just like any other and players are expected to be professional just as in any other job, but you cannot tell me that this will not affect things when it comes down to it.  If the Capitals believe that Neuvirth is worth more than Holtby then why isn’t that how things play out on the ice when they choose the main net minder?  Even though Neuvirth is getting more money, wouldn’t he wonder why he’s not getting more ice time or would he even care?

This is quite an interesting situation and when Washington’s general manager, George McPhee, was asked about it, his response was the following according to ESPN.com:

“Sometimes, it’s the way it goes.”

Would that be the way it goes with the contracts of players like Alex Ovechkin and Brooks Laich?  Somehow, I don’t think so.

Looking at the two goalies’ stats doesn’t help clear up matters either.  Neuvirth, although having an injury this season, has only played in 13 games winning four and losing five and his save percentage was .901 while Holtby played in 36 games this season winning 23 and losing 12 and a save percentage of .920.

Perhaps this is one of the reasons why the Capitals aren’t as successful with their goaltenders when they’re making deals like this with the very players they’re paying to mind their nets.

Stephanie Lewark is an NHL and Pittsburgh Penguins Senior Writer for RantSports.com. Follow her on Twitter (@steelcitysports), check out her Facebook page, or add her to your Google+ circle.

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