First of all, congratulations to the Texas Stars on their first-ever Calder Cup victory. It was a good playoffs, but I must admit I was too focused on my LA Kings winning a second Stanley Cup to follow the AHL as much as usual!
Oh, so much to report on in this off season…. from rumors of major western expansion in the AHL to places like California, the yet-to-be determined AHL realignment (and my wish for five divisions in five seasons as the Checkers looks to be coming true!), and off season moves by the Checkers and Hurricanes, there is a lot to talk about. But to keep today’s update simple, I compiled a list of all of the Checkers currently under contract, along with d those who have expired contracts and have signed elsewhere in the off season.
A few days ago, it was announced that Mike Murphy has signed in Austria for next season. Murphy is a player who I admire so much, both on and off the ice. He was the Checkers first “Man of the Year” winner in the team’s inaugural AHL season. That same year, he led the team to the Eastern Conference Finals, and has played some of the most epic games of his career for the Checkers. 2013-14 was a challenging season for Murphy between major goaltending injuries to himself and others. He will be greatly missed. I will certainly follow his team in Austria (one of my favorite European countries!).
So… about the contract situation. The Hurricanes and Checkers have a number of contracts to figure out in the coming month or so. RFA qualifying offers should go out in the very near future, and as these are released, I’ll update them here.
2014-15 Charlotte Checkers under contract: