After nine seasons in the NHL, Douglas Murray is currently unemployed as the new season arrives. He spent last year with the Montreal Canadiens, and there were no takers when he became an unrestricted free agent on July 1.
Murray had opportunities to sign an NHL tryout contract, but he declined. Why? He doesn’t believe in them, saying they are more beneficial for the team and wasteful to the player.
From Aftonbladet (translated):
"I have been nine years in the NHL and seen many tryout players. It's not far over one percent of those who eventually will contract and the reason is that many teams are using it the wrong way in order to rest the veterans of the team.
“Then put tryout players in bad situations. They get to play with bad players and younger players, and it is of course easier to perform with better players."
There were a large number of tryout contracts handed out by NHL clubs this preseason, from Paul Bissonnette to Scott Gomez to Tomas Kaberle to Henrik Tallinder to Ilya Bryzgalov. Only Dan Carcillo, Drayson Bowman, Shane O’Brien and Raphael Diaz (UPDATE: and now Jordin Tootoo) earned contracts from their PTO deals.
The tryout contract is always a shot in the dark by a team. Maybe this veteran guy still has something left in the tank and can win a spot? Maybe this veteran guy can push some of younger players to perform better in camp during these two weeks? In the Minnesota Wild’s case, maybe we should sign a few more goalies to PTOs given how cursed our crease situation has become?
Still working out in hopes of landing a contract somewhere, the 34-year old Murray is skating with Djurgardens of the Swedish Hockey League. If the showcasing of the defenseman’s “speed” the last two NHL seasons has been any indication, his future in the league is bleak and Europe may very well be his final landing spot.
- - - - - - -