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On Monday I took a stab at what Brooks Laich's arbitration hearing with the Washington Capitals might look like, and at the risk of dislocating my shoulder patting myself on the back, it pretty much turned out as expected. I guessed he'd get around $700,000 and he ended up with $725K according to TSN.

Considering that his qualifying offer from the Caps was around $660,000, I guess that's a small victory for Laich (you won't catch me frowning at an extra 10% raise), but you have to wonder how his agent feels about this. He just put in the time and effort to file and plead an arbitration case that yielded peanuts for an agent earning a few percentage points of Laich's salary (figure a 5% commision on the increased salary of $65,000 is worth a mighty $3,250). Did they really think there was any large upside here? I guess since Laich was in no danger of exceeding the $1.2 million mark, beyond which the Caps would have had the right to walk away from the deal (much as Buffalo did last summer with J.P. Dumont) Laich's agent may have decided they didn't have much to lose.
You know it's the dog days of summer when this is the kind of news we have to write about!

UPDATE: Many thanks to Jeff and JP in the comments for pointing out that perhaps Laich's big gain here is winning a one-way contract that should keep him in the NHL all season, rather than a two-way deal that could have had him playing in Hershey given all the acquisitions Washington's been making lately.

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