The Carolina Hurricanes and Ninja GM Ron Francis somehow managed to sign four restricted free agents to new one-year contracts within three minutes of one another on Thursday.
Or at least that’s what they’d have you believe based on the time stamps on the press releases.
Then, as if they weren't busy enough, three hours later they signed Ryan Murphy to a two-year deal. (More on him below.)
Dennis Robertson, Keegan Lowe, Brody Sutter and Brendan Woods have all signed one-year, two-way deals with the Hurricanes, for varying costs:
- Robertson: NHL $650,000; AHL $75,000
- Lowe: NHL $750,000; AHL $80,000
- Sutter: NHL $600,000; AHL $115,000
- Woods: NHL $650,000; AHL $80,000
Sutter (eight games) and Woods (five games) were the only two players of the four to get playing time with the Hurricanes in 2015-16. Lowe spent the entire season with the AHL Charlotte Checkers, and Robertson split time between the Checkers and the Rockford IceHogs, the Chicago Blackhawks’ minor-league affiliate, rejoining the Checkers at the AHL trade deadline after leaving the Hurricanes’ organization in the deal that brought Kris Versteeg and Joakim Nordstrom to Carolina in the 2015 offseason.
Of the four, Robertson is the only one who is not subject to waivers next season to move from the Hurricanes to the Checkers. All but Lowe were arbitration-eligible this offseason, but none elected to go through with the process.
Instead of making you wade through four press releases to get to the comments, here are some links:
Update 5:45 p.m.: Three hours later, the Canes finalized a deal with their last remaining restricted free agent, defenseman Ryan Murphy. Murphy signed a two-year contract worth $1.575 million, paying him $750,000 next season and $825,000 in 2017-18.
"Ryan is still a young player at 23, and has shown he can contribute offensively from the blue line," Francis said in a statement. "He has developed through our system and we look forward to seeing his game continue to grow."
Murphy's deal is a one-way contract, meaning he will be paid the same amount in either the NHL or AHL. Additionally, he is subject to waivers this upcoming season for the first time in his career.
The release from the team is below.
‘CANES AGREE TO TERMS WITH RYAN MURPHYDefenseman split 2015-16 between Carolina and Charlotte
Ron Francis, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has agreed to terms with defenseman Ryan Murphy on a two-year contract. The deal will pay Murphy $750,000 in 2016-17, and $825,000 in 2017-18.
"Ryan is still a young player at 23, and has shown he can contribute offensively from the blue line," said Francis. "He has developed through our system and we look forward to seeing his game continue to grow."
Murphy, 23, split the 2015-16 season between the Hurricanes and the team’s American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Charlotte Checkers. The Aurora, Ont., native earned 10 assists in 35 games with the Hurricanes, and scored seven goals and earned 17 assists (24 points) in 32 games with the Checkers. Murphy (5’11", 185 lbs.) has totaled 35 points (6g, 29a) in 124 career NHL regular season games with the Hurricanes since making his debut in 2012-13, and has earned 63 points (10g, 53a) in 82 career AHL games with the Checkers. Carolina drafted Murphy in the first round, 12th overall, in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.