No news was reasonably good news for Red Wings fans on the second day of NHL free agency.
While it meant that defenseman Ryan Suter and forward Zach Parise hadn’t signed with the Wings, they hadn’t signed with any other teams either.
Parise, speaking to media gathered outside his agent’s office in Mississauga, Ontario, Monday, said he had not yet decided.
“It’s such a long-term, important decision, you have to make sure you look at everything.” Parise said to NHL.com, among others.
Suter’s agent, Neil Sheehy, also said there is no timetable for his client.
In a statement on NHL.com, Sheehy said, “There will be no decision on Ryan Suter (Monday night) and there is no timetable for his contract signing at this time. Ryan is considering his opportunities and is taking the necessary time to give each proper consideration.”
So along with the rest of the league, the Wings must wait.
Samuelsson happy to be back
The Wings did not have to wait to get an answer from Mikael Samuelsson, who knew all about the team from playing in Detroit from 2005-09.
“The main reason when I choose a team at this point in my career is if they’re going have a chance to win or not,” Samuelsson said. “That’s the main reason why I chose Detroit.
“I know many of the players there, and I know what it’s like from last time. It was a really tough decision for me to leave the last time I did. It’s very comfortable for me here. It shouldn’t take me any time to get adjusted to the game or the system that they’re playing. I know they play the same way like they did when I left.”
Samuelsson was a key member of the 2008 Stanley Cup championship team and will be expected to replace the contributions of Jiri Hudler, who signed a four-year, $16 million contract with the Calgary Flames Monday. Hudler had 25 goals and 25 assists in 81 games.
Samuelsson, 35, had 13 goals and 15 assists in only 48 games with the Florida Panthers due to injury. In his two previous seasons with the Vancouver Canucks in 2009 and 2010, Samuelsson had 53 points (30 goals) and 50 points (18 goals), respectively.
In the postseason with the Wings, Samuelsson had five goals among 10 points in the 2008-09 playoffs and five goals among 13 points in the 2007-08 playoffs.
Samuelsson doesn’t expect his role will be too different this time.
“They know what kind of player I am, they know what they get from me,” Samuelsson said. “First of all, my thoughts are if you play good, you’re going to earn your ice time.
“Hopefully, my role can be what it was last time, which was being on the second line and contribute, and can be on the power play as well. I can play actually in a lot of different situations, in my mind.”
In addition to rejoining what he believes to be a championship contender, Samuelsson is also glad to be back with the many Swedes on the Wings. He’s already heard from Henrik Zetterberg and Niklas Kronwall.
“This doesn’t feel right now like I’m changing teams again,” Samuelsson said. “It feels like I know what the organization is about, and I think I know how we play, or supposed to play, and I know the guys.
“It’s not going to be one of these situations where you have to take some time to adapt in a couple of weeks to learn the new guys. I know a lot of the guys in the locker room there.”