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Hurricanes

Canes' Whitney will enter free agency

Posted June 7, 2010
Updated June 9, 2010

Carolina Hurricanes President and General Manager Jim Rutherford spoke with Carolina Hurricanes pre and post game show host Mike Maniscalco Monday afternoon and told him that Ray Whitney will go into free agency when it begins July 1st.

Rutherford said that with the direction the team is headed and what Whitney wants to do, he does not believe the team will be able to bring Whitney back.

Whitney is a verteran winger who won the Stanley Cup with the team in 2006. This past season Whitney had 21 goals and 37 assists, ranking third behind Staal and Jokinen.

Whitney made 3.55 million last year, and almost left the team before the trade deadline this past season.

Maniscalco asked Rutherford if Whitney would test the market the way Erik Cole and Chad LaRose did last season, but quickly re-signed with the Canes. Rutherford's response, "That is something you have to ask him."

Whitney was far into negotiations with the Los Angeles Kings, but terms of the trade could not be negotiated and Whitney stayed at Carolina.

John Forslund, TV play-by-play announcer for the Hurricanes told the Insiders on 620 the Buzz that he believes there is a market in the league for Whitney's services.  Forslund stating that "The Hurricanes need Ray Whitney. No matter how many young players you are going to infuse in the lineup, you are going to have to insulate those young players with some kind of veteran leadership, but also leader that can put points on the board." He went on to add that he doesn't believe that Whitney's free agency is an issue where "you can say Ray Whitney makes too much money, and won't fit the payroll, so away he goes."

32 Comments

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  • tplatania Jun 10, 11:58 a.m.

    It is unfortunate that we have a very cheap owner and his continued need to reduce salary. The Wizzard is a key player and one we need to save. Get rid of Cole and his inability to keep the puck on his stick and his constant injuries.

    Rutherford is unfortunately a puppet. Karmonas minds him up and he speaks. Maybe one of these days Kar will sell the Canes and we will get local owners who realize like any other sport, you always need 3-4 stars to give you a chance. Staal is overrated and Ward is overpaid and clearly overrated. So we are in trouble for the future. Lots of young talented kids, but once their salaries start going up, we will lose them.

  • QC Jun 10, 11:11 a.m.

    This is tragic. Cutting payroll may attract a minority buyer, but it may also lower ticket sales and crush team and fan morale.

    I would argue that in additon to (as posted earlier) Ray being the "backbone and funny bone" of the Canes, he may well have been the most important player of the last few years. Ray would make HALF what Stahl makes, and I would argue he has done more for the Canes recently than Stahl has. Dish Stahl, cut the fattest part of the payroll, get even more great young talent in trade, and convince Ray to sign for 2 years.

  • viking416 Jun 9, 6:07 p.m.

    JR has hit the "youth reset" button on this team and I for one think it is a good move. Ray was great and if they can get him back for the right price...wonderful! I think JR should be and probably is focusing on the draft....would love to see us move up into the top 3. Get er done JR!

  • garnerCanesFan Jun 9, 9:06 a.m.

    I see another Chad LaRose/Erik Cole deal coming later this summer. Luckily we split that one last year. Rosie definately worth the $$, Cole (who I felt could have been great) has never been the same since the broken neck. He shows signs at times of rebounding only to plagued with another injury. It would be hard for me to believe with the youthful talent around the league the Ray will get 3+ years making over 4 mil/year. Hopefully after testing the market a contract can be worked out. Hope to see you still a 'Cane this fall. If not I wish you the best of luck Ray. You will definately be missed.

  • Ken D. Jun 8, 12:25 p.m.

    Maybe the Canes learned something from the last long term deal they gave a 36+ yr old forward? ... View More

    — Posted by caniacman

    At the end of the day, it will cost the Canes $3 million to keep Ray, and $500K to keep Roddy. Rutherford has suggested the Canes' target payroll is about $44 million and that they won't pursue free agents. They get there by letting Ray and Brian Pothier go.

    Roddy only costs them $500K, even though his contract is for $3 million, because they would have to pay him $2 million to buy out the last year of his contract and then pay someone else the league minimum of $500K to take his place on the roster. They may think it's worth it to the team to have Roddy in the locker room, and also to avoid being seen as being cold and heartless.

    Keeping him under these terms also keeps open the possibility of a coaching job with the Canes after retirement.

  • I love America Jun 8, 9:12 a.m.

    Ouch. Seems a lot of gamesmanship going on here. How badly do you want to stay and play? How badly do you want me? I hope when the FA doors open and the money doesn't come flooding in, compromise can be reached and we keep the wizard WITHOUT losing one of the young guns. Ray Whitney was a young gun once upon a time.

  • edits Jun 8, 8:51 a.m.

    Business is business no matter what kind of business it is. Would not like to lose Ray but he will do well wherever he is. I just think it's sad that if he doesn't stay that the community loses not only him, but his wife and the work she has done with the theatre here in Raleigh.

  • tdd Jun 8, 7:59 a.m.

    Hate to see you leave Ray,you're one of our favorites.

  • jscott13 Jun 7, 10:58 p.m.

    Dump Mo and keep Ray!!

  • bigfiddlepbc Jun 7, 9:54 p.m.

    Unaffiliated-voter - got that right!! There are definitely good enough players not to be a last place team, but when your coach is as talented as we have - he can definitely get that done - drive 'em to last coach Mo!!

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