Carolina Hurricanes

‘Canes re-sign Jordan to one-year, $625,000 contract

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The Carolina Hurricanes have re-signed defenseman Michal Jordan to a one-year contract worth $625,000.

“Michal took great strides last season, and continued that progress when he represented his home country (Czech Republic) as it hosted the World Championship,” said GM Ron Francis in a release. “He’s still a young defenseman, and we expect him to continue to improve going forward.”

Jordan, 24, played 38 games for the ‘Canes in 2014-15, scoring twice with four assists while averaging 15:57 of ice time.

He was a pending restricted free agent.

Carolina ‘looking at all the options’ for Semin, says Francis

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Buyout? Trade?

Keep him?

Those are the options Carolina GM Ron Francis is currently mulling regarding the future of forward Alex Semin. After a disappointing year in which he missed 25 games to injury and healthy scratches — finishing with a career-low six goals — Semin, who has three years and $21 million remaining on his contract, could be done with the ‘Canes in the not-too-distant future.

But as for now, his situation is up in the air.

“It’s too early to say,” Francis said this week, per the Raleigh News & Observer. “We’re looking at all the options. Is it best to keep him here or should we do something else?

“At the right time we’ll do what’s best for our organization.”

The right time could be next week, as GMs first descend on Las Vegas for the NHL Awards, then Florida for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. And with the league’s buyout window now open, this pretty much is the time for Francis and the ‘Canes to decide what to do with Semin.

A buyout would be expensive — $14 million over the next six years. It’s unclear if owner Peter Karmanos would green-light such a move but, if he did, Francis would have some salary freed up to make other moves.

A trade could also be explored, but it’s almost certain the ‘Canes would need to retain salary.

The third option, of course, is for head coach Bill Peters to continue trying to light a fire under Semin. And if Carolina is looking for something to build on, it can point to how the former 40-goal man played in February and March — 10 points in 24 games, hardly earth-shattering totals, but a potential glimmer of hope.

The reality, though, is that most signs point to him playing elsewhere next year. As the Observer noted, Francis’ remark about Semin “doesn’t sound like a general manager expecting to see a player back in his team’s lineup.”

The futures of four marquee Hurricanes players rest with one agent, one GM

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There is an interesting dynamic brewing with the Carolina Hurricanes when it comes to four of their top players, including Eric and Jordan Staal, Jeff Skinner and goalie Cam Ward.

All four are represented by the same agent in Rick Curran, and Carolina general manager Ron Francis will have some important decisions to make about the futures of all four players, most notably Eric Staal, who is entering the final year of his contract, which includes a no-trade clause.

From the Raleigh News & Observer:

Basically, every high-priced, popular, star player the Hurricanes might even consider trading as part of a rebuilding process has the same agent, and this summer brings a new kind of time pressure.

Both Eric Staal and Ward need to be either re-signed or traded, because their contracts are up after next season. Jordan Staal is signed to a long-term contract but came here to play with his brother and may not want to stay without him. Skinner has three years left on his contract but is one of the Hurricanes’ most marketable assets.

As the NHL Draft nears — it was only two weeks away, as of Friday — the speculation around the future of the elder Staal, the Hurricanes captain, could intensify. It’s worth noting that on Friday, it was reported that Francis is not seeking to trade Staal at this point.

Report: Hurricanes aren’t seeking to trade Eric Staal

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With speculation about the future of Eric Staal, especially with the NHL Draft only two weeks away and with one final season left on his contract, the Carolina Hurricanes are reportedly not looking to trade their captain.

“No, not at this point,” Hurricanes general manager Ron Francis told WRALSportsFan.com about whether the club was seeking to trade the 30-year-old Staal.

Staal, who has played his entire career so far in Carolina, is coming off a 54-point season, playing in 77 games with the Hurricanes. It’s his lowest point total in a non-lockout year since his rookie season in 2003-04.

He’s also entering the final year of his current contract, which comes with a cap hit of $8.25 million and a no-trade clause, while paying him $9.5 million for the last season.

Earlier this week, it was reported that Staal’s agent Rick Curran and Francis were expected to meet to discuss Staal’s future with the team.

Canes sign Lucas Wallmark to a three-year, $1.8 million contract

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The Carolina Hurricanes have signed Lucas Wallmark to a three-year, entry-level contract worth $1.825 million the club announced on Thursday.

At the NHL level, Wallmark will make $575,000 in 2015-16, $600,000 in 2016-17 and $650,000 in 2017-18. The deal pays him $65,000 per season at the American Hockey League level and includes a signing bonus of $225,000.

“Lucas has good hockey sense and can contribute in all three zones in different situations,” said Carolina GM Ron Francis. “We are pleased that he has chosen to continue his professional development in our organization.”

Wallmark spent the 2014-15 season with Lulea of the Swedish Hockey League scoring five goals and 13 points.

The 19-year-old led the his club in playoff scoring during their first-round playoff loss to Frolunda registering five assists.

The native of Umea, Sweden represented his country at the 2015 world juniors scoring four goals and six points in seven games capturing a silver medal at the tournament.

Carolina selected the 6-foot, 176-pound forward in the fourth round (97th overall) at the 2014 NHL Draft.