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Finishing in second place in hockey doesn't mean a whole lot, especially in free agency. Unless you finish as a free agent's top team, where you rank is not really all that important.
Case in point: Ryan Suter said on Wednesday that the Detroit Red Wings "were right there until the end," along with the Nashville Predators. While it's nice to hear that the Red Wings made an impression on him and were in the mix to sign him, he ended up choosing the , so it doesn't exactly mean a whole lot. Even so, at least he had nice things to say about the Red Wings:
Ryan Suter: "Detroit is a great franchise. They've got a great thing going there, everybody knows how much success they've had."— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) July 4, 2012
The situation with Zach Parise was quite a bit different. The end result was the same with him signing with the Wild, but the Red Wings weren't one of his finalists. He was down to Minnesota and re-signing with the New Jersey Devils, and Helene St. James reports that the Red Wings "weren't close" on the money offered to Parise. They didn't want a cap hit of $7.5 million for him, and it doesn't sound like their chances were ever that good of landing him.
Ryan Suter's decision is in. This year's top free-agent defenseman has decided to sign a 13-year deal with the Minnesota Wild, according to the Star Tribune's Michael Russo. Just a couple days ago this would have been considered a highly unlikely conclusion to "Suter Watch," but a lot has changed in the last 24 hours, and now the Detroit Red Wings need to look elsewhere to bolster their defense.
With Suter picking the Wild, it's likely that the top free-agent forward, Zach Parise, will do the same. On Tuesday night, Parise admitted that he was talking with Suter about free agency, and speculation suggests that the two players have eyes on becoming teammates. Now that Suter has chosen to play in Minnesota, it would be an upset if Parise doesn't follow suit.
For the Red Wings, this decision is going to sting for a while. Red Wings fans have had eyes on Suter for the better part of the last year, and the need for Detroit to sign him only increased this offseason with Nicklas Lidstrom retiring and Brad Stuart departing for San Jose. The Red Wings certainly gave it their best effort by offering Suter a deal worth a reported $90 million over 13 years, but it wasn't enough to convince him to wear the winged wheel.
What's next for the Red Wings? According to Helene St. James, they will turn their attention to Matt Carle and Carlo Colaiacovo in an attempt to improve their defense. They will also likely explore trades, as there is nobody on the open market that even comes close to the talent of Suter. Detroit may need to get creative in order to make their defense better given the current state of the free agent market.
UPDATE: Parise has in fact agreed to a deal with the Wild.
"Suter Watch" is finally coming to a close. A specific time for its end is still unclear, but according to a tweet from Ryan Suter's agency, a decision will be made at some point on Thursday.
Client Ryan Suter plans on making a decision today.—PAUL OSTBY (@SHEEHYHOCKEY) July 4, 2012
As of Thursday morning, the Detroit Red Wings hadn't heard anything from Suter or Zach Parise, according to the Free Press' Helene St. James. This indicates that no decisions have been made yet. However, one from Suter is expected soon, and it appears Parise may make his decision on Thursday as well.
#NJD Suter camp announces he will definitely make a decision today. Told that a decision from Parise today is "likely"— Katie Strang (@KatieStrangESPN) July 4, 2012
Given all of the recent talk about Suter and Parise potentially being a package deal, it wouldn't be surprising if one decision is quickly followed by another. I just hope that if Suter is indeed first up, he selects the Red Wings. I just have a bad feeling that if Parise decides first and picks Minnesota that Suter will follow suit.
I suppose we will find out for sure soon enough.
Way back in May, Gregg Krupa of the Detroit News reported that one NHL team official was expecting Ryan Suter and Zach Parise to be a package deal. They had allegedly previously discussed the possibility of playing together, and this source even believed that Suter and Parise were setting things up so they could join the same team.
Now, with July 4 here and still no decision having been made by either player, talk is once again starting to focus on Parise and Suter joining the same team. In an interview on Tuesday night, Parise admitted that he's been talking with Suter, and he also admitted that he would love to be part of a package deal with him.
Parise tells @joshrimerhockey "I'd love to play on a team w Ryan Suter. To get an opp. to play with him would be great."— Michael Russo (@Russostrib) July 4, 2012
That report from May indicated that if Suter and Parise were to go as a package, the Detroit Red Wings would likely be the lucky team getting both. Although the Red Wings have offered contracts to both players, it now looks like the Minnesota Wild may be the favorite to land them if this does turn out to be a package deal. The Star Tribune's Michael Russo has been strongly indicating that the Wild are in good shape with both free agents, and just from reading the tea leaves, Minnesota seems like a more likely destination for Parise than Detroit.
The good news for now is that the Red Wings do appear to still be in the mix for both players. After all, Suter hosted the Red Wings for a meeting on Tuesday. He also hosted the Wild, indicating that this could be a two-team race for his services. If Parise opts to go somewhere other than Minnesota, speculation suggests the Red Wings would be the favorite to land Suter. On the flip side, if Parise does sign with Minnesota, then Suter may end up there for that reason alone.
While it's nice to know that the Red Wings still have a shot at both players, all of this talk about the Wild ending up with both is a bit concerning. TSN's Darren Dreger tweeted on Wednesday morning that he expects the "saga" to conclude on the Fourth of July, and he thinks one or two teams "will be celebrating." In other words, this may come down to the top two free agents choosing one team like the Wild, or it may be a situation where Parise opts to sign somewhere other than Minnesota and Suter ends up choosing Detroit.
Let the fireworks begin.
Oh, technology. On Tuesday afternoon, thanks to FlightAware.com, it was discovered that a plane owned by Mike Ilitch flew to Madison, Wisconsin. The speculation was that the purpose of the flight was for the Detroit Red Wings to meet with Ryan Suter, who lives in Madison, but that was just speculation.
Now, we have some actual confirmation that the Red Wings did meet with Suter. From the Free Press' Helene St. James:
DET GM Ken Holland met with Ryan Suter today. No decision imminent. Probably won't come before Thursday. #RedWings— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) July 3, 2012
Neil Sheehy, Suter's agent, told the USA Today's Kevin Allen that there will be no decision on Tuesday. Couple that with St. James' report and it looks like "Suter Watch" will continue into July 4 and possibly July 5. While it'd be fitting for Suter to make a decision on the Fourth of July given all of the fireworks that will be going off anyway, it seems he is planning to wait until later in the week.
UPDATE: According to Michael Russo, the Minnesota Wild also met with Suter on Tuesday.
Business is starting to pick up on the Ryan Suter front. After a quiet Monday and a relatively quiet Tuesday morning, things got going when it was discovered that a plane belonging to Mike Ilitch had flown to Madison, Wisconsin. It wasn't there for very long, but the stop was certainly long enough for the Detroit Red Wings to meet with Suter, who lives in Madison.
Shortly after Ilitch's plane took off to return to Detroit, there was more activity in the form of a report about the Red Wings' contract offer to Suter. From the Free Press' Helene St. James:
#RedWings initial offer to Ryan Suter was $80 M, 13 years, now up to $90 M. Team wants to keep cap # reasonable - preferably under $7 M— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) July 3, 2012
Following the first day of NHL free agency, there was a report that the Red Wings made a 12-year offer to Suter worth $90 million. If the offer is in fact currently at $90 million with a 13th year, then the cap hit would be only $6.9 million a season rather than $7.5 million. St. James reports that the Red Wings want to be able to retain flexibility cap-wise, and all things considered, a cap hit of $6.9 million a year for a player like Suter isn't bad by any means.
St. James also tweeted this about Suter on Tuesday afternoon:
Impression is, D Ryan Suter wants to go to "quiet market." #RedWings would fit as they have passionate fans w/o intense scrutiny— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) July 3, 2012
I don't know if I would go that far considering we are tracking flights just to figure out what the Red Wings are up to, but I get her point. Everything players do off the ice isn't tracked (once they're actually on the team, anyway), and it's not like New York where there is an intense amount of pressure.
While Zach Parise's decision is "probably" coming on Tuesday, there is far less certainty surrounding when Ryan Suter will make his decision. There were no developments on the Suter front on Monday, and so far the only news his agent has provided on Tuesday is that a decision is "forthcoming."
Ryan Suter agent Neil Sheehy tells Free Press: "A decision is forthcoming but.... everything needs to be considered carefully."— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) July 3, 2012
As Suter's agent said, "everything needs to be carefully considered," which is why Suter is still thinking things over. Basically, a decision could come on Tuesday, Wednesday or even later in the week. It's all up in the air right now.
Just based on how these two stories have developed, it seems like Parise is going to decide before Suter. Perhaps once that domino falls, Suter will decide on his team, allowing the rest of the free agent market to start taking shape.
It looks like both "Parise Watch" and "Suter Watch" are rolling on into Tuesday. On Monday afternoon, Zach Parise said that he had not yet made a decision about his future and still needed time to think things over. While a decision could be made on Monday night, the more likely scenario is for nothing to happen until Tuesday at the earliest. Suter is in the same boat, as no decisions will be made until Tuesday at the earliest, according to a statement released by his agent on Monday night.
(cond Sheehy): "Ryan is considering his opportunities and is taking the necessary time to give each proper consideration." #mnwild— Michael Russo (@Russostrib) July 2, 2012
As things stand on Monday night, it's not clear when either player will make a decision and pick a team to sign with. Parise seems to be closer to a decision than Suter based simply on the above statement, but that might not be saying much.
For now, the waiting game is continuing for the Detroit Red Wings and other teams still in the mix for Suter and Parise.
The Detroit Red Wings, along with several other teams, made it known on the first day of NHL free agency that they want both Ryan Suter and Zach Parise on their team. Just how bad do the Red Wings want to land the top two free agents on the open market? They opened up their checkbook in a big way. While it isn't known what the Red Wings offered Parise, MLive's Ansar Khan reports that Suter's offer is for $90 million over 12 years.
Loaded with cap space, it probably shouldn't be too surprising that the Red Wings' offer is reportedly so large. Then again, it's not often you see deals like this tossed around. Henrik Zetterberg's 12-year deal is worth a total of "only" $73 million, for example. Contracts have clearly been inflated since then, but part of me was a bit worried that the Red Wings would be hesitant to make such a large offer to Suter.
While it remains to be seen if Suter will in fact accept Detroit's offer, they have made it clear that they are pulling out all the stops to sign him. With Nicklas Lidstrom retiring, one era has come to an end for the Red Wings, and clearly they want Suter to begin a new era as the cornerstone of their defense going forward.
It's amazing how quickly things can change. Just a short time ago, there was talk that free agent Ryan Suter had not only made his decision, but that he had picked the Detroit Red Wings. I was getting ready to run down the streets celebrating the news, but quickly it became evident that the report wasn't accurate. Suter's agent shot down the rumor by telling the media that a decision had not been made, and now we are once again playing a waiting game.
It looks like this waiting game will continue into Monday, because now a decision isn't expected to be made at all on Sunday.
Told it is "unlikely" that Suter will make his decision today.— Kevin Allen (@kausatoday) July 1, 2012
Neil Sheey, the agent for coveted #NHL free agent Ryan Suter tells The AP: "I don't expect a quick decision."— Larry Lage (@LarryLage) July 1, 2012
The good news is that even though a decision still may be a day away, Nick Kypreos is reporting that "some on inside say" Suter is leaning toward the Red Wings. Of course, as we found out earlier, that may not mean a whole lot right now, but if nothing else, at least the Red Wings are squarely still in the mix to land Suter.
Contrary to a report that suggested and selected the Detroit Red Wings as his new team, Neil Sheehy, his agent, says no decision has been made. Immediately there was an explosion of excitement when it looked like Suter had decided to become a Red Wing, but that excitement quickly disappeared when reality set in. had closed in on a decision
Red Wings general manager Ken Holland indirectly confirmed that Suter has not yet picked a team by sending the following text out to the media:
From DET GM Ken Holland: "Everything is media rumors at this time." #RyanSuter— Detroit Free Press (@freepwings) July 1, 2012
Suter very well may come to a decision shortly, and the Red Wings very well may be the team he ends up picking. For now, though, nothing has been decided.
It appears the Ryan Suter sweepstakes may be over and the Detroit Red Wings may have won it. Nick Kypreos is reporting that there is some chatter that Suter has selected the Red Wings as his new team.
In a follow-up tweet, Kypreos said that he is "still looking for confirmation" of Suter selecting the Red Wings, but "the sense is the decision is coming soon."
If this turns out to be true, the Red Wings will have landed their top free agent target. Signing Suter is absolutely crucial after Nicklas Lidstrom retired and Brad Stuart departed for the San Jose Sharks earlier this offseason. There was a big void left in the defense, and the hope all along was for Suter to help fill it.
SB Nation Detroit will have more on this news as it develops.
UPDATE: According to his agent, Suter has not yet made a decision.
While there has been a lot of contradictory information about the Detroit Red Wings' plans to meet with free agents Ryan Suter and Zach Parise, one piece of news has been confirmed by general manager Ken Holland. Specifically, Holland confirmed to the Free Press' Helene St. James that the Red Wings have submitted contract offers to both Suter and Parise. This should come as no surprise, of course, but this news has now been confirmed.
Confirmation that offers have gone out to Suter and Parise came after there were various reports in the last hour that contradicted each other. Mainly, there was a lot of differing info on Parise and the Red Wings' plans to meet with him. At one point, there was a report that the Red Wings had a meeting scheduled with Parise. Then, Pierre LeBrun reported that the meeting was off despite the fact that Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock was already in Toronto for the meeting.
It turns out the confusion was a result of Parise's agent canceling all in-person meetings due to the ridiculous amount of interest in his client. MLive's Ansar Khan has more on this:
But Parise's agent, Don Meehan, called them and said he has canceled all meetings because more than 20 clubs have asked to see him and he can't possibly accommodate everybody.
Meehan told teams to submit their best offer by phone, and the Red Wings have submitted a big one. Parise will consider all the offers.
According to St. James, Babcock is now headed home from Toronto after not meeting with anybody. At the start of the day, it seemed like the Red Wings would be having in-person meetings with both Parise and Suter, but in the end neither player is hosting meetings for the time being. Perhaps this will change once the two players narrow down the list of teams they are interested in.
The Detroit Red Wings won't be meeting with free agent Ryan Suter on Sunday. According to a report on Saturday night, the Red Wings were planning to send owner Mike Ilitch and team adviser Chris Chelios to Wisconsin to meet with Suter. Suter, however, isn't interested in hosting anybody for a face-to-face meeting at this time, according to MLive's Ansar Khan.
Wings owner Mike Ilitch originally planned on going to Madison to meet with Ryan Suter but Suter not meeting face to face with teams.— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) July 1, 2012
Khan further reports that the Red Wings hope to meet with Suter in person on Monday. It will ultimately come down to whether Suter wants a meeting or not, though. If he decides that is a necessary step before making a decision, then you can bet the Red Wings will send people to Wisconsin to meet with him. If that's not necessary, then everything will be conducted over the phone as Suter's agent originally planned.
When NHL free agency opens at noon ET on Sunday, defenseman Ryan Suter will be on his farm in Wisconsin. Unlike fellow free agent , Suter isn't headed to his agent's headquarters to wait for teams to make their pitch. Instead, the plan calls for Suter and Neil Sheehy, his agent, to conduct business over the phone.
"We (he and NHL general managers) all know each other, so there's nothing meeting face-to-face is going to accomplish, at least initially,'' Sheehy said. "If Ryan is uncertain, that (meetings) could come into play.''
Although Suter isn't planning to host teams in person, the Detroit Red Wings are sending owner Mike Ilitch and team adviser Chris Chelios to Wisconsin to meet with Suter, according to MLive's Ansar Khan. As Khan notes, Chelios is a "close friend" and former teammate of Gary Suter, who is Ryan Suter's uncle. Could this personal connection have resulted in a meeting being set up? It's not clear, but contrary to Sheehy's original plans, it appears an in-person meeting could take place.
While Suter apparently planned to conduct business over the phone, hopefully the Red Wings' initiative to go to Wisconsin to meet with him anyway will boost their chances of signing him.
This is not breaking news by any means, but defenseman Ryan Suter is going to hit the open market on Sunday. This has essentially been a given for a while now, but Neil Sheehy, Suter's agent, confirmed to the Associated Press on Saturday that his client is for sure going to test free agency.
Neil Sheehy told The Associated Press on Saturday that he doesn't know where Suter will sign, but added the player will keep the Predators "in the mix."
Every situation is obviously different, but it seems unlikely that Suter would test free agency only to later re-sign with the Nashville Predators. This isn't a situation where Suter is hitting the open market to gauge his worth, as he is one of the top free agents and will be paid as so. It's really a matter of what team will be the best fit for Suter for the next part of his career.
For those in Detroit, the hope is obviously that the Red Wings will be considered the best fit in Suter's mind, but with so many teams expected to offer him a deal, it's certainly not a slam dunk that he will choose to wear the winged wheel.
When NHL free agency opens on Sunday, you can bet that one of the first phone calls the Detroit Red Wings will make is to defenseman Ryan Suter. He is believed to be their top target, and many think he will ultimately end up signing with the Red Wings.
Although Suter is certainly going to be one of the top free agents on the open market, he is taking a simple approach to the process. He is not going to require in-person presentations from interested teams, and Neil Sheehy, his agent, says that Suter will actually be on his farm when free agency opens.
Sheehy: "Ryan will be at his farm in Wisconsin with his phone on. I'll be here in Minnesota."— Mark Spector Sports (@SportsnetSpec) June 28, 2012
It's unclear right now what kind of timetable Suter will have for a decision. He is sure to receive several offers, but will he take a few days, a couple weeks or possibly even longer to choose a team? It remains to be seen, but the ideal scenario for the Red Wings would be to find out Suter's decision shortly after free agency opens. What he decides to do will play a big part in what the rest of the Red Wings' offseason looks like, so from that standpoint, the sooner they hear a decision the better.
The Pittsburgh Penguins seemingly have been involved in almost every major trade rumor in the last day, including rumors surrounding the rights to Ryan Suter. Although the Nashville Predators at one time were believed to be open to trading Suter's rights before July 1, general manager David Poile dismissed the idea last week. Even so, that didn't stop rumors from persisting in the last day that the Penguins were making a run at trying to acquire the rights to Suter.
While there have been reports that the Penguins either offered a deal for Suter's rights or at the very least had discussions with Nashville about it, Poile says that isn't the case.
Poile said no one tried to trade for Suter's rights. "I'm looking you in the eye and telling you."— Nick Cotsonika (@cotsonika) June 23, 2012
What's more, TSN's Bob McKenzie is reporting that Penguins management told him they have no plans to trade for the rights to Suter (or Zach Parise, for that matter). They would rather wait until July 1 like everybody else and take their chances when Suter becomes an unrestricted free agent.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are hosting the 2012 NHL Draft, and so far they have been one of the most active teams at the draft. On Friday, they traded Jordan Staal to the Carolina Hurricanes and Zbynek Michalek to the Phoenix Coyotes. They also have reportedly been talking to the Nashville Predators about acquiring the rights to defenseman Ryan Suter.
Rumors of the Penguins' interest in Suter first popped up on Friday night. They died down as the first day of the draft came to a close, but they are once again swirling on Saturday. The Penguins reportedly want a top-pairing defenseman, and Suter would certainly fit the bill, which is why they are working to make a deal happen, according to CSNPhilly.com's Tim Panaccio.
A source told CSNPhilly.com early Saturday morning that Penguins general manager Ray Shero is working hard to get Suter’s rights from Nashville. [...]
"Ray feels he can talk Suter into coming to Pittsburgh," the source said.
Shero was an assistant general manager for the Predators before he went to Pittsburgh, and he was there when the Predators drafted Suter back in 2003. Could those ties result in Suter signing with the Penguins if a trade is completed? It's possible, but there's no guarantee Suter wouldn't opt to just wait until July 1, which is what the Detroit Red Wings would have to hope for if his rights are dealt to a team like Pittsburgh.
This won't come as a surprise to anybody, but Nashville Predators defenseman Ryan Suter is expected to test free agency. The Predators have been hoping to re-sign him before he hits the open market on July 1, but Predators general manager David Poile expects Suter to become a free agent.
Of course, just because Suter is set to become a free agent doesn't mean the Predators are completely out of the picture. Poile said during an interview with 102.5's Sports Revolution last week that Suter has not informed him that the Predators have been eliminated from contention for his services.
"Absolutely not, and that's the good news," said Poile to 102.5's Sports Revolution (via OTF) on Friday. "The bad news is that he hasn't said 'let's get something done.' As we get closer to July 1, it seems like more and more he's going to want to test free agency and see what other teams are offering him, what they have to say to them."
Contrary to a report from last week, Poile claims he isn't interested in trading Suter's rights. If Suter flat out told Poile that he isn't going to re-sign, then you might see his rights get dealt. Since that hasn't happened and because Poile is holding out hope that Suter will test free agency and ultimately decide to re-sign, it looks like his rights won't be dealt.
What this means for the Red Wings is that when free agency opens on July 1, Suter will likely be the first person they call. Had Nashville dealt his rights, the Red Wings could have attempted to make a deal for them. Of course, the chances of the Predators dealing his rights to a division rival were slim, so it's good news for Detroit that Suter is planning to just wait until at least July 1 before deciding anything.
There is a common theme emerging when it comes to reports about Nashville Predators defenseman Ryan Suter's future. For starters, Suter is not expected to re-sign with the Predators before July 1, meaning he will likely become a free agent. Secondly, the Detroit Red Wings are considered Suter's most likely landing spot.
The latest evidence that the Red Wings are Suter's preferred team comes from a report by CSNPhilly.com's Tim Panaccio. The focus of the report is on how Suter won't end up signing with the Philadelphia Flyers, but there is a Red Wings-related tidbit in it.
In fact, the source said, all of Suter’s preferred destinations, should he leave the Predators, are in the Western Conference – not the East.
Detroit is generally conceded to be his top choice.
The obvious caveat with any report like this is that nothing really matters until July 1. Even so, there's no denying that there's an awful lot of smoke surrounding the possibility of Suter ultimately signing with the Red Wings.
The Nashville Predators want to re-sign defenseman Ryan Suter, but the reality of the situation is that it won't be easy. Suter, who is set to become a free agent on July 1, is going to draw interest from all around the league, and there's a very good chance he will leave the Predators for another team.
Perhaps realizing that they won't be able to re-sign Suter, could the Predators trade his rights away so they at least get something for him? According to Dennis Bernstein of The Fourth Period, the Predators might do exactly that later this month.
League exec told us last night he expects Preds to deal Suter rights around draft, 'just like they did with Hamhuis, Hartnell and Timonen'— Dennis Bernstein (@DennisTFP) June 12, 2012
Bernstein also reports that Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland plans on "going all in and big" on both Suter and Zach Parise, who are set to be the top free agents on the open market. On the one hand, news that the Predators could deal Suter's rights is a sign that Holland and the Red Wings might have a shot at making a move and signing him before July 1. Then again, would Nashville really deal Suter's rights to a division rival? To me, it seems like the Predators would try to send him elsewhere. Of course, he doesn't have to sign with the team that acquires his rights, so a trade wouldn't necessarily eliminate the Red Wings from the Suter sweepstakes.
The Detroit Red Wings are not happy with the way things worked out for them in the 2012 NHL Playoffs. An early exit has many questioning whether the team has peaked, and whether or not they'd be able to make a successful rebound in a season. Most are of the opinion that the team needs to get aggressive to keep things alive, and it appears they might just be doing that.
According to Ansar Khan of MLive.com, the Red Wings could be interested in trading for some negotiating rights this offseason. If a team feels that one of their free agents is unlikely to re-sign, they can trade the exclusive negotiating rights to another team, generally for a draft pick.
Detroit has just signed some of their draft picks and they're excited about some of the young talent currently in the system. Right now, they don't need draftees, they need some bigger name free agents here and now. The report states that the Red Wings are very interested in Nashville defenseman Ryan Suter and New Jersey forward Zach Parise.
As it happens, those are the top two free agents this year. While both of them have a solid chance of returning to their teams, it is intriguing to think of either player with the Red Wings. If Detroit traded for their negotiating rights, it would certainly increase their chances of signing either player to a deal.
The 2012 offseason is a very important one for the Detroit Red Wings, and they face several key questions about what they will do during it.
Arguably the most coveted free agent on the Detroit Red Wings' radar this offseason, Predators defenseman Ryan Suter met with general manager David Poile on Thursday as Nashville desperately tries to do everything possible to keep its stud defender in town.
An unrestricted free agent, Suter is able to sign elsewhere if he does not have a contract by July 1. Many are expecting him to be lured away by a rather significant offer from Detroit now that Nicklas Lidstrom has officially made the decision to hang up his skates. But with free agency still a month away, the Predators still have plenty of time to iron out a deal to keep Suter around long-term.
As far as the face-to-face talk on Thursday, Poile was confident that things are moving in proper direction, saying "we still don't have a deal, but I'm still optimistic and still going to keep constant dialogue in this process." Even though it's clear that Nashville wants to do everything in its power to keep Suter from landing in Hockeytown, Detroit still remains the early favorites to land his services if he opts for free agency.
When NHL free agency opens on July 1, the Detroit Red Wings' top two targets are expected to be defenseman Ryan Suter and forward Zach Parise. They are going to be the top two free agents on the open market, and fueled by lots of cap space and a desire to make a splash, the Red Wings are expected to make a hard push to sign one or both.
According to The Detroit News' Gregg Krupa, Suter and Parise very well may want to sign with the same team, which would be good news for the Red Wings. Citing their history of playing together for the United States in the past, as well as NHL sources, Krupa reports that Suter and Parise may be looking for a package deal.
"I am assuming that, at least as of right now, they are a package deal," said one NHL team official, who is aware of the circumstances.
"They certainly seem to have set it up that way, themselves."
There are still another five or so weeks until free agency, and once it opens, a lot could happen. For now, though, it's nice to think about the possibility of the Red Wings landing both Suter and Parise. Krupa certainly made a strong argument for why they could both end up in Detroit, and if it were to happen, the Red Wings would once again be considered one of the top contenders to win the Stanley Cup in 2012-13.
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