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The UFA Negotiating Window Is Closed

from Matt Larkin of The Hockey News,

NHL teams had a framework of what was and wasn’t allowed during the negotiation window. The intent was for an owner and GM to sit down with a player early, talk about the team’s vision and figure out if there was a fit, said Octagon player agent and co-managing director Allan Walsh, who represents the likes of Jonathan Huberdeau and Marc-Andre Fleury. Teams were told they could discuss the “general parameters” of a deal. But because the rules weren’t strictly enforced, the definition of “general parameters” was pretty open to interpretation, and teams started all but hammering out contracts in advance.

“It couldn’t be policed properly, so it was disregarded,” Walsh said. “So in effect, July 1 actually opened five to seven days before July 1. And it was the Wild, Wild West.”

Contracts couldn’t officially be signed, but Walsh estimates most were essentially done about 48 hours before July 1.

“July 1 in the morning, you talk to a GM, and he says, ‘I’m done,’ ” Walsh said. “You’re done? Free agency opens in an hour. ‘Yep, I’m done. I feel good about what I’ve done.’ ”

The murky guidelines of what was allowed meant every team perceived things differently and nobody knew exactly how far one could push a negotiation – or when to start discussing actual offers.

read on

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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