The Hurricanes re-signed a handful of skaters to short term deals this week but none were as crucial as the deal that brought Alexander Semin to Carolina.
TSN’s Hockey Reporter Darren Dreger confirms on Twitter that the Carolina Hurricanes and Semin agreed to a one year, seven million dollar contract. This signing not only fulfills Carolina’s off-season wish list to add a top six, scoring winger, it also puts them back in the Eastern Conference playoff picture.
If you are thinking seven million dollars is a few million too much for a player with Semin’s reputation then you are correct. But the money does not matter when you see it is just a one year deal. This is the best possible scenario for both sides – Carolina gets a top line forward to fill the void and Semin gets a sizable payday (and no, I’m not talking about the candy bar).
“Alexander’s elite skill level and ability to score from the wing fill an important need on the ice, and we hope that a fresh start in Carolina will serve both Alexander and our team well,” General Manager Jim Rutherford said.
Twenty-eight-year-old Semin played with the Washington Capitals for seven seasons and last year he was second among Capitals skaters with 21 goals, 33 assists and 54 points.
Ever since the off-season began, Rutherford discussed that he was interested in adding a top six forward before pre-season. He can now put two checks next to that task after trading for Jordan Staal and signing Semin to a one year agreement. With the addition of Jordan Staal and now Semin, the Hurricanes have plenty of options for their top two lines whether or not the Staal brothers play together on the same line.
With the signings on Semin and Staal, the Hurricanes added 46 goals, 58 assists, and 104 points to their roster. I would love to see the Staals and Semin (Two Staals, One Russian, anyone?) play on the top line and keep the Fins and Skin chemistry together, but it appears that head coach Kirk Muller will wait until the beginning of the season to figure out his line combinations.
There is already conversation about the Staals splitting up on the top two lines to create more balance, but Muller will have the final call once he tries out different combinations in camp.
The only thing set in stone is that the Hurricanes added a top six forward in Semin and he will be a tremendous asset for the team this coming season.