Earth to all hockey players. If Jim Rutherford offers you a contract, you should probably strongly consider taking it. Back in June, Carolina offered a two-way contract to Ryan Bayda. The forward turned it down, thinking he could get a one-way somewhere else around the league. Ooops!
Late Monday, it was reported that Bayda signed a two-way deal with the Pittsburgh Penguins. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but the point is he could have signed a similar deal with the Canes and stayed in a familiar situation without the headache and pressure of surviving a tryout.
Bayda is not the only player whose bubble was burst.
Dennis Seidenberg turned down an early offer by the Canes because he reportedly wanted a multi-year deal. But as it turned out, he signed a one year contract with the Florida Panthers very late in the free agency process. In other words, he could not get what he was hoping for.
The same thing happened with Anton Babchuk, who refused a qualifying offer of a million dollars made by the Hurricanes in early July. He was seeking in excess of two million for multiple years. The word is that Rutherford may have sweetened the offer a bit more, but none the less, Babchuk ended up signing for 1.5 million in the KHL and further delayed his future chances for arbitration rights and a big payday in the NHL.
Several sources said that Manny Malhotra was negotiating with the Canes during the free agency period, but the two sides could not agree to terms. The Canes ended up signing Stephane Yelle for $550,000. Maholtra could not find a home and went to San Jose on a tryout. He eventually signed for $700,000, after initially wanting more than the $1.1 million he earned last season. Anyone want to bet how much Rutherford may have offered the fourth line center?
All's well that ends well for the Canes, who ended up getting replacements they are very happy with. Time will tell how their decisions will work out for the respective players.