Hossa to test free agency, declines Penguins' offer
OTTAWA -- Marian Hossa has declined a lucrative offer to sign a long-term deal with the Penguins and will test free agency.
General manager Ray Shero said today after the NHL Entry Draft at Scotiabank Place that Hossa, a star right wing acquired Feb. 26, will offer his services to other teams as an unrestricted free agent on July 1.
Shero said he is "comfortable" with the offer presented to Hossa to remain in Pittsburgh, though Shero would not provide specifics of terms.
The offer to Hossa was a multi-year deal worth slightly more than $7 million annually. Hossa earned $7 million this past season.
Hossa said after the Stanley Cup final he would take "less (money) to play for a good team."
Shero said Hossa never said those words to him, but added that Hossa said today the Penguins are at the top of his list come July 1.
"I've talked to him and his agent (Ritch Winter) lots, and we look to be his first choice," Shero said. "But he's going to go to July 1 just to make sure, and we'll see what that brings both of us. We've made a very fair contract offer. From Marian's standpoint, he wants to be sure. He knows the risks involved (in testing free agency), and so do we."
Attempts to reach Hossa have been unsuccessful. Winter declined comment.