So, sign Suh or not?

Fat Guy Corner

Jeff Day — Sports Columnist

Jeff Day — Sports Columnist

The Detroit Lions’ decision not to franchise Ndamukong Suh comes as no surprise to me. Detroit would have owed him $26.9 million for one year with no guarantee on a long-term deal in Detroit. The Lions cannot afford to tie up that kind of cap money for one player.

Ndamukong Suh is a Hall of Fame-type player, there is no question about that. He also is a durable player on the field. Mr. Suh has played in 78-of-80 regular-season games. He makes playing defense much easier for all the other defense men for the respect he commands from the opponents. We all know by now that Suh wants to be the highest defensive player in the NFL. The contracts of JJ Watt and Gerald McCoy have established some sort of guidelines for the Lions and other teams to negotiate. The Lions have until March 10 to lock up Suh to a long-term deal. If the Lions don’t, then Suh is free to negotiate with the other 31 NFL teams.

The Lions have played this situation with Suh the correct way, in my mind. The Lions cannot afford to wreck an entire football team over one player. I say, if Suh signs elsewhere, I don’t want to hear Lions’ fans complaining about the organization and letting him walk. I think Detroit signing him is about 40 percent for Detroit and 60 percent for the rest of the NFL. There are numerous teams who want him, but not a lot of teams who have cap room to make it work. Keep that in mind.

Winged Wheels deal

The Detroit Red Wings’ brutal road trip is over! A six-game trip produced nine of a possible 12 points. Cha Ching, I say. The trade deadline brought the Red Wings a couple of older veterans. Erik Cole, 36, was brought over from the Dallas Stars. Erik had 18 goals and 17 assists in 57 games for Dallas and has played in 881 NHL games. Detroit gave up a pair of prospects in Mattias Backman and Mattias Janmark, both 20-year olds. What are the odds of both players having that same first name? Just saying. The other deal was made with the New Jersey Devils for a 38-yearold defense-man Marek Zidlicky. Detroit gave up a 2016 conditional pick in the third round. I really have no opinion on these deals, to be honest. Detroit didn’t have to give up much, which is a good thing. I really didn’t think Detroit needed to make any trade deadline moves. I think this team is real solid and playing well. Detroit’s young kids received a taste of the playoffs last year, which should benefit them this coming playoff season. I think Detroit made these moves to add depth and injury insurance in case someone gets hurt in the month and a half. This Red Wings hockey club has been fantastic all season long.

Movin’ on into retirement

Richard Hamilton announced his official retirement from the NBA late last week. RIP, as he is known in Motown, did not even play last year in the NBA. RIP spent 14 years in the NBA. The first three were with Washington which took him No. 7 in the draft. He then came to Detroit and spent nine great years here while winning the 2004 NBA title. He then spent two injury-prone years finishing his career in Chicago. RIP Hamilton averaged 17.1 points in his NBA career. He was always running around the court with endless energy. I say, Mr. Hamilton, thanks for all the great memories you provided the Detroit Pistons organization and its fans. I will, as will no Pistons’ fans, ever forget that 2004 NBA Championship win over the Los Angeles Lakers. Enjoy the rocking chair, my Mr. Hamilton.

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