Sep 26, 2013; Dallas, TX, USA; Colorado Avalanche center Brad Malone (42) skates in warm-ups prior to the game against the Dallas Stars at American Airlines Center. The Stars defeated the Avalanche 5-1. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

My Thoughts on Brad Malone

The Carolina Hurricanes have signed center Brad Malone to a 2-year, $1.3 million contract that will pay him $600,000 in the first year and $700,000 in the second.  Malone comes to us from the Colorado Avalanche where he dressed for a total of 54 NHL games and accrued 9 points (4 G, 5 A).  He is originally from Miramichi, New Brunswick.

I’m not exactly sure what to think about Brad Malone at the moment.  He has minimal experience and minimal scoring totals, but he has size.  Prior to the NHL Draft, GM Ron Francis made it clear that his Carolina Hurricanes would address their needs of size and strength before the upcoming season.  Malone’s 6’2”, 207 lb. frame clearly fits in with the new mentality.

I am a big advocate for scoring so you can understand the pain I’ve felt over the past few playoff-less years for the Canes.  This signing does not necessarily answer the scoring question, but it will help.  The Canes have tried to fill the “Bruiser” hole over the past few years with the likes of Troy Bodie and Kevin Westgarth.  Neither put up acceptable numbers, but served their respective purposes via morale, fighting for pucks, and fighting other players.  The “Bruiser” supports the rest of the team and through his play, he can create scoring chances.

Malone might not fit exactly in that mold.  He could be called upon to fill the role that Manny Malhotra satisfied last season.  While he may not sport the same face-off percentage that Malhotra did, he does have a good bit of size on him.  I can only hope that he surprises us in the scoring category as well.

My expectations are still low for this free agency period, but at least this signing kicks things off for us.  Ron Francis said he wanted to add 4th line depth and he did.  Next up should be defensive depth.  Let’s just hope there’s a good surprise coming our way!

Tags: Brad Malone Carolina Hurricanes Opinion Ron Francis

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