Wednesday, June 25, 2008


The Penguins have qualified all of their restricted free agents to be. The list is: Tim Brent, Ryan Stone, Jonathan Filewich, Paul Bissonnette, Mark Ardelan, Daniel Fernholm and Patrick Ehelechner.

If you're new to qualifying offers, they have to be made to players about to become restricted free agents in order to retain the rights of that player. It's a nominal bump (10% we think) on the salary the player made in the previous season. The players have a couple weeks to sign that offer, or let it expire in hopes of negotiating a higher contract or looking to sign in Europe where older professionals can make more money than being in the AHL.

As JB points out, the ones to keep an eye on are Brent (who had an awesome post-season) and Stone and Filewich….If the Penguins don’t come to terms with guys like Pascal Dupuis and Jarkko Ruutu and don’t replace them, it seems to be a lock that some internal players would fill their positions, and those three are the presumed candidates, unless an unpolished prospect like Luca Caputi or Dustin Jeffrey comes in and has an amazing training camp.

Bissonnette, a feisty player who once skated warmups in the ECHL wearing a professional wrestling championship belt, was thought to be at the end of his line with this organ-eye-zation. He’s got talent but has shown flashes of immaturity and unprofessionalism. But due to injuries he got a 2nd chance as a winger instead of his usual defensive spot and really opened eyes. Bissonnette focused on playing hockey and really impressed the front office, he’s earned his qualifying offer for sure. The other players qualified, Ardelan, Fernholm and Ehelechner are not expected to be in the organ-eye-zation moving forward.

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