Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Update to the free agent lists

As I said yesterday, Tim Leone would have something up soon. And he does.

Below is a complete breakdown of all the players that were with Hershey. Much of this information was in yesterdays post but this clarifies the AHL only contracts that I didn't have access to.
Players under contract with Hershey AND Washington for 2011-12:
  • Braden Holtby 
  • Brandon Anderson
  • Dmitry Orlov
  • Keith Aucoin 
  • Kyle Greentree 
  • Jay Beagle 
  • Garrett Mitchell
  • Dmitry Kugryshev
One note here (didn't realize this yesterday)...Anderson can NOT play in Hershey in 2011-12. He is still a junior eligible player and can only join the Bears after his season is over.

Here are the players under contract with ONLY Hershey in 2011-12:

  •  David de Kastrozza
  •  Maxime Lacroix
  •  Phil Oreskovic
  •  Andrew Carroll
Overall there is 1 goalie, 2 defensemen, and 8 forwards eligible for Hershey next season, and that includes Jay Beagle. That is what you call an empty roster. There will be LOTS of signings and player movement this offseason.

Here is a list of the restricted free agents for 2011-12:

  • Patrick McNeill
  • Zach Miscovic
  • Josh Godfrey
  • Joe Finley
  • Francois Bouchard
  • Mathieu Perreault
  • Trevor Bruess
  • Andrew Kozek (Atlanta Thrashers)

Perreault had this to say about his future:
“I want to sign back with Washington,” Perreault said. “I like the organization. I like to be here [Hershey] if I’m not there.”

Seems like he will sign his offer if (WHEN) it comes. I don't see the Caps letting him go yet but another team might be interested. I would expect all of the remaining guys to get offers as well with the exception of maybe Finley. But even him I expect to see them give one more chance.

Here are the unrestricted free agents for 2011-12:
  • Dany Sabourin
  • Todd Ford
  • Jared DeMichiel
  • Nolan Schaefer (Boston Bruins)
  • Johann Kroll
  • Dylan Yeo
  • Brian Fahey
  • Patrick Wellar
  • Sean Collins
  • Lawrence Nycholat
  • Patrick Cullity
  • Jordan Pietrus
  • Nikita Kashirsky
  • Grant McNeill
  • Ashton Rome
  • Andrew Joudrey
  • Joel Reclicz
  • Boyd Kane
  • Steve Pinizzotto
  • Brian Willsie
  • Andrew Gordon

That's a lot of names. Here is what Gordon had to say about his future:
“Washington has been so good to me over the years, so I feel it’s still priority No. 1 for me to stick around here,” he said. “If they don’t think there’s a spot for me, I still have the option to maybe go test the water this year."

“It’s all I know. I love it here. I want to play in the NHL, though. With all due respect to everybody here in Hershey, I don’t want to spend any more time here. It’s a tough position. I don’t want to see this organization in my rear-view mirror, but at the same time I’d like an NHL opportunity.”
I don't think he comes back without a 1-way deal. And I am not sure he gets it with Washington. He is a very good player with a real chance to make it in the NHL but the Caps don't seem to like giving their young forwards as much of a shot as other teams. The defense has been built via Hershey but the offense...not so much.

That is possibly an indication of the forwards in the system and that top forwards are more likely to skip the AHL but that doesn't answer it all. Nathan Gerbe, Martin St. Louis, Claude Giroux...they all spent considerable time in the AHL and are all key players for their respective clubs.

That doesn't mean Hershey has seen talent like that at forward but I think...IF given a legitimate shot...that Gordon and Chris Bourque could make it in the NHL.

Either way I think Gordon might have played his last game in a Hershey jersey. We wish him all the best no matter what he chooses.

Some other comments from guys:

Boyd Kane,
“I definitely love it here and I’d come back in a second.”
Brian Willsie (considering Europe as well),
“Nothing too concrete right now,” he said, “but Hershey is a definite possibility.”
Sheldon Souray (under contract with Edmonton),
“It really was an easy and seamless transition for me, especially with the guys and the coaching staff and just this organization in general,” Souray said. “I say that and I mean it.

“You think about hockey and playing with a lot of younger guys who are hungry to make the NHL. I really had a fun time. It was a good experience. It reminded me of playing 15 years ago.”

“I don’t have one bad thing to say about the organization or the experience I’ve had here,” Souray said. “So if that’s something that’s going to play itself out, then I have no problem coming back here.
“Obviously, there’s other places I’d want to be, you know what I mean? I say that in the best way. My goal is to get back in the NHL, like most of these guys. But it was so easy here."

Steve Pinizzotto,
“I think I put together a good couple years here,” he said. “Hopefully, I can do something where somebody believes I can play at the next level.”

There is lots of time for speculation about any number of these players but after the past few years we are used to seeing certain players each and every year.

The roster turnover hasn't been there like it might be this year. Most of these years has seen many of the same faces return year after year. Obviously we will see many of these players again. There are the 11 currently under contract and I would be willing to bet that at least 8 of the unrestricteds get resigned by the organization.

But we won't know about them until July. That's a long way off compared to when the season ends in June.

That's kind of depressing to think about.

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