Reviewing some brief news....
Luke reported late yesterday that Michael Leighton will indeed be offered a one-way contract with the Canes for next season. This news isn't shocking considering the goalie's outstanding performance in Albany last season. He also performed well in training camp and during a brief stint during a call up with the Hurricanes last year.
During a recent interview, Leighton expressed that he would be very happy if he could sign with Carolina before free agency starts on July 1st. It seems that there are two willing parties, so something should be completed soon on that front.
In the same article, apparently Bret Hedican has finally informed Jim Rutherford of his intention not to commit to the Hurricanes next year. Obviously, he wants to test the free agency market. It sounds like if he doesn't get any offers from other teams, then he might consider coming back to the Canes.
Hopefully, Jim Rutherford won't be holding his breath while waiting.
Luke also mentions that he has been trying to interview coach Peter Laviolette, but keeps getting referred to the Carolina PR department. Lavi has certainly kept a low profile since the end of the season. Are his feathers ruffled a bit over the way he was treated by upper management?
Maybe we will find out later. He will have to say something to the press eventually.
There is a report out of Russia that Anton Babchuk has been offered an invitation to Hurricanes training camp next season. Babchuk is contemplating his options. Don't take too long to think about it Anton, that's what got you into trouble in the first place.
06/03/2008 Anton Babchuk (Carolina Hurricanes) is currently evaluating his options, one of which is to return to North America and accept an offer from the Carolina Hurricanes. Another option for Anton is to remain in Russia and re-sign with HC Avangard (Omsk), which has given him a qualifying offer to remain with the club. While Babchuk did not completely fulfill the expectations placed on him this past season in the Super League (Russia 1), he did deliver a strong season, thus making his return to the NHL likely, though it may not be with the Hurricanes if they trade his rights .
I have mentioned before that I think it would be a good idea to bring Babchuk back in for training camp. He is still Canes property and maybe he can play well enough during the pre-season for the Canes to get some trade value out of him, if nothing else. If worst comes to worst, he can always go back to Russia. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
With both Wesley and Hedican gone, obviously Carolina needs help on the blueline. What will they do? One option could be Mike Commodore. He's a free agent, and he had a great year 2 years ago, (although a bad one last year). As long as the price is right, (under 2 million), I wouldn't have a problem bringing him back.
We will look more into other possible defensemen later next week.
I have added a couple of additional newsfeeds on the right sidebar. Eklund's Rumors are always entertaining to watch this time of year. 99% of his bunk never comes true, but it's still interesting to read. I have also added Puck Daddy's Blog, which is doing a great job over on Yahoo. I find myself checking James Mirtle's Blog a couple of times a day, so I thought that adding his feed would make things easier as well.