Carolina Hurricanes: Going back to the Sebastian Aho offer-sheet Saga

Sebastian Aho #20 of the Carolina Hurricanes (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images)
Sebastian Aho #20 of the Carolina Hurricanes (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images) /

The Carolina Hurricanes had to deal with an offer sheet last year.

Over a year on from the Finnish Center’s offer-sheet from the Montreal Canadiens, how has it worked out for all parties involved?

On July 1st at 3 PM EST, Sebastian Aho signed an offer sheet with the Montreal Canadiens, in an effort to end his contract saga with the Carolina Hurricanes. To quote Don Waddell “At 3:02 PM EST, the Carolina Hurricanes had decided to match the offer sheet”. Safe to say that this was a no brainer for the Hurricanes after such a weak offer sheet attempt at only 8,454,000 over 5 years.

Compensation for that offer-sheet was only a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd which made it a simple decision for Carolina to match the horrific underpayment. Honestly, Aho got so far below market value, I could have thanked Marc Bergevin (Montreal’s General Manager).

Yet, some people believe that the offer-sheet has led directly to the moving on of Rick Dudley and the saga with John Forslund.

So, let’s start with Forslund, Dudly, and the Carolina side of things base don the financial impact of the offer-sheet. Aho received $9,870,000 on July 1st as a signing bonus.

People in Montreal want to believe that it is because of said signing bonuses that Carolina hasn’t sorted things out with the best play-by-play man in the business and the former Senior Vice President of Hockey Operations.

Dudley has already been released by the club, which rumors circulating he may land in Buffalo. Dudley is a journeyman and often moves around from place to place. It should come as no shock that he has chosen to depart from the Canes organization now that the team is in one of the best situations of any team in the NHL.

John Forslund is still a mystery ball. However, after his contract expired on July 1st, the all-time great play-by-play voice is still doing podcasts and events representing the Carolina Hurricanes franchise, which expresses a desire to stay. Again, I have no inside information, this is just what I have noticed from being a Caniac.

How has the offer-sheet worked for Aho? Other than getting paid more on one day that I will make in 5 years, the Finnish sensation was on pace to be roughly in the point per game mix again. He was on pace for 45 goals and led the league in short-handed goals. He finished 6th in goal scoring and has become a genuine sniper that Carolina needed.

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So, how has it worked for Montreal? Well, Aho tallied more points than any Hab did this year. They got swept in their season series against one of the worst ever teams historically. Montreal qualified for the play-ins, just about. They are the lowest seed in the east still and get the Pittsburgh Penguins in the play-ins. Not great. Sebastian really would have helped!

Now, what impact has the finances of the Aho offer-sheet caused for the Carolina Hurricanes?  Basically, nothing! Carolina has one of the richest men in North America as the owner. Paying Aho is not really an issue. Carolina had 19 staff members out of the contract. 17 have re-signed. Money isn’t a problem. Forslund is still in negotiations and Dudley wanted to move on.

All in all, Carolina has had no problem matching the offer-sheet and I’m sure there’s no regret in any regard. concerning the offer-sheet. There’s absolutely no reason for the Hurricanes tp have taken the picks when the alternative is a 45 goal scorer. Even if this comes down to a choice between John Forslund and Sebastian Aho, Aho is the no brainer decision.

Question for Cardiac Cane readers: Would you match the offer-sheet or take the picks?

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