Over the next two weeks or so, we’ll look at the restricted and unrestricted free agents on the Carolina Hurricanes roster. We’ll look at pros and cons of signing each player and give a final opinion on what the team should do. A poll will be included in each post.
Although he only played 11 games with the Carolina Hurricanes this season, Zach Boychuk was the point of discussion for Canes fans throughout most of the season.
At the start of the year, it seemed it would be another disappointing year for Boychuk, who was once again relegated to the Charlotte Checkers. But instead of pouting, the winger did some great stuff and eventually warranted a callup in December. He recorded an assist before being sent back down.
At the end of the year, Boychuk had four points (1 goal, 3 assists) in those 11 games, but also finished with the most goals in the AHL with 36. The 24 year old even played on the first line with the Canes at the end of the year.
It seems that Boychuk has finally taken the next step in his development and could be an NHL player that contributes on both ends of the ice. Will he score 36 goals in the NHL? I doubt it, but he might be a third liner that can play on the second line in dire situations.
The main problem for next year is that the Hurricanes don’t really have the time to experiment. Things have gone awful and a turnaround is needed. Playing a guy that hasn’t cemented himself as an NHL player isn’t what the Canes should necessarily do.
But losing Boychuk isn’t smart either, given how well he played in his short time in Raleigh this year.
Re-signing Boychuk would cost less than $1 million and a contract could be between the $600,000 to $800,000 range.
I believe the Hurricanes should re-sign Zach Boychuk and give him the opportunity with the big club.