It is one thing for a team to pony up $6-7 MM on a long term contract for a free agent, but its another to pay $13.5-$14 MM on a long term contract for two free agents. Particularly when everyone is running scared on league revenues and a falling salary cap. There aren’t that many teams able to make that kind of commitment and some of those teams aren’t willing.
The question is not really about what the Sedins are worth. In their case, it is more about what other teams are willing and able to pay. Both players want to stay in Vancouver and both want to play on a winner. Gillis wants them to stay, but why should he pay more than they can get elsewhere? Which good team can afford them? (Or even force the Canucks to pay them $6 MM?) I can’t see one. Would they be interested in losing in Toronto? I doubt it, and I suspect Burke would rather go for Bouwmeester and Hossa or Gaborik.
Never mind the hometown discount. How much is the family discount?
People have commented about the Kings picking up the twins. But it’s simply not possible. The Kings will be at $47-48MM after signing Johnson and Purcell. They’re not going to commit $12-13MM to the Sedins and then dump salary to make room.
The Sedins situation is another version of the Hossa situation, although the Vancouver version of it is interesting because they have virtually nobody under contract for next year, whereas in Detroit there’s no room at the inn. But in both cases, you’ve got highly-compensated UFAs wanting big salaries and (naturally) wanting to play for “contenders,” and in both cases there are few teams with the cap space to pay them. And even fewer contenders.