Penguins, Parise weren’t a good match
By Rob Rossi
Published: Thursday, July 5, 2012, 12:01 a.m.
Updated: Thursday, July 5, 2012
The Penguins planned to go nuclear this summer by signing the NHL's top two free agents.
The problem was that neither winger Zach Parise nor defenseman Ryan Suter allowed Penguins general manager Ray Shero to push that button.
“You needed one of these guys to come back and say, ‘Pittsburgh is the place we want to play,' and then work out the details from there,” Shero said Wednesday. “We never got to that point.”
Parise and Suter, each 27, signed deals for 13 years and $98 million apiece with Minnesota. Each player will make only $4 million total in the final three years of his deal.
Shero declined to provide specifics of the Penguins' offers. They each significantly bested a seven-year deal worth around $50 million that was presented to winger Marian Hossa in 2008, sources told the Tribune-Review.
Parise and Suter told the (Minneapolis) Star Tribune that ties to the Minnesota community and a desire to play together were important factors in signing with the Wild. Team owner Craig Leipold said on the club's website that the team did not provide the top financial offer.
“Ryan and I had talked throughout the year. At the time, you always say to each other, ‘Wouldn't it be great to have a chance to play with each other on the same team?' ” Parise said.
Staying with the Devils was Parise's second choice, New Jersey general manager Lou Lamoriello said. The Penguins “didn't know what was going on” regarding their chance with Parise until Tuesday night, Shero said.
Suter drew serious interest from the Detroit Red Wings and Philadelphia Flyers in addition to the Penguins, Predators and Wild. Nashville general manager David Poile lamented Suter's decision not to stay and play with defense partner Shea Weber for his entire career.
“I think disappointment would not adequately describe the word I would like to choose,” Poile said to The (Nashville) Tennessean.
Parise and Suter signed on the fourth day of free agency, which opened at noon Sunday. Shero said the Penguins did not miss out on any available players of interest by staying in the Parise/Suter sweepstakes.
He viewed Parise as a “two-way” fit to play alongside Sidney Crosby, whom Parise phoned on Day 1 of free agency. Shero thought Suter could form a dominant top pairing with defenseman Kris Letang.
“We made strong offers for both players — very strong offers,” Shero said. “They're both really good players. Obviously they were going to help any team out.”
- Penguins Insider: Time is right for Jokinen’s return
- Neal’s solid play soon could pay off on scoresheet for Penguins
- Kovacevic: Pens improve under microscope
- Penguins notebook: Morrow leaves practice with injury
- Senators get vote of confidence
- Senators notebook: Pens' Crosby has defensive shadows
- Penguins’ breakdown on Alfredsson goal changes series
- Cooke has been steadying force for Penguins in playoffs
- Senators exude confidence after stirring Game 3 victory
- Penguins Insider: Players’ focus in right place
- Penguins notebook: Jokinen’s faceoff skills may be needed
You must be signed in to add comments
To comment, click the Sign in or sign up at the very top of this page.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.