I like the deal. He didn't try to extort them for the big bucks and was willing to take a slightly lower salary to keep cap room to pick up a good winger. Obviously they have a few slots to fill but with 15 mil of cap space I think the Pens have a legitimate shot at Parise now. He is friends with Crosby and the Pens have cap room. If they can sucker someone into taking Martin off our hands maybe they can pick up Suter too.
I think it was a good deal for the Pens. As you said, they now have more cap room. They now do have a shot a Parise, but frankly, whoever signs him will likely be paying too much.
And if Crosby has to retire early (I don't wish that since I've had a serious concussion myself), I think ownership stakes (like Mario) could be in order instead of salary. Dunno if Bettman will go for that.
Crosby is a whiny little prick, and a subtlely dirty player. We all know that. But he is 1) a very good player 2) loyal to Pittsburgh.