I'd be ok with matching offers as long as there were on restrictions with regards to cap space. In other words, if I had a player on a 7/14 day contract (assuming we changed that part without much issue) and I/we started an auction for said player, I could be given the right to match any offer made for that player and win him, as long as I didn't go over the hard cap and
stayed within all the other rules (I'm thinking mostly about min/max rostered players).
My only question would be is a matching offer simply a point in our favor for a tie-breaker, or does that give us the win outright? The reason I ask is because I want to make sure that whatever the solution is, it's fair and reasonable to all. But more importantly, that it's simple - i.e. not tied up with a bunch of points for this and points for that. Yes, on the ground level, I feel this should
be weighted a bit for the manager trying to keep the player. As Jim pointed out, I too would hate to see a good manager lose out on a player simply because he didn't think to sign him directly. But I do see how it could be too much for a straight signing without any kind of bidding or repercussions.
I was actually thinking about something along the lines of a required higher contract, where if the manager wanted to sign said player, he would have to do so at a higher, preset amount which was more than the 7/14 day contract, including making it an amount relevant to how much cap space he has left. So basically, we could set the rule as a manager can sign a player off of a 7/14 day contract, but the minimum offer has to be X million dollars (I'm was thinking 1 or 2), OR
if said manager is within a certain amount of the hard cap, it would have to be a percentage of what cap space he has left.
Example using 2M as the contract's hard number, and 50% as the percentage amount, all above/below 3M of the hard cap:
A. Say a manager has 5M in cap space (the cut off for this option is 3M), and he wants to sign a guy off on a 7/14 day contract. Since he has more than 3M in cap space left, he has
to offer the player 2M for the remainder of the season if he wants to keep him.
B. Say that manager had only 2M in cap space. Because he's within
the 3M dollar number, he would have to sign that player for half
of what he has left in cap space. In this case it would be 1M dollars. And working under this option, no player could be signed for less than the amount of a 7/14 day contract - so no signing players for half of .25M - if that's the case, the player immediately goes to the FA pool for possible auction.
And finally, all numbers would not count the player's existing 7/14 day contract deal in the equation, since that would come off the books anyway if the manager in question simply let him go to the pool.
Of course, having given all that as an example, it does go against my second point as stated before - I'd like to keep it as simple as possible.
So, if that means going to a "matching offer" type of rule, where the manager holding the player has the right to match a bid, and therefore win that player, I think I'd be ok with that. Again, as long as I didn't have any restrictions on how much salary I could take on (within the rules of course), or any kind of tie-breaking scenarios and such.
And sorry to hear about Markos - hope we can find another manger as dedicated as he's been in the past.