TULSA, Okla. – One of the many housekeeping duties ECHL teams have to accomplish during the offseason is make qualifying offers to up to eight players on their roster from the previous season that are not currently under contracts.
The Tulsa Oilers and head coach Rob Murray made their offers on Monday to seven players.
At this point, the only player who has signed to the team officially is defenseman Steven Kaunisto, who was inked last week by the team. While additional signing announced are expected soon, most of the players on this list are not huge surprises in terms of the Oilers fan base. Speculation abounds as to who on this list will actually put pen-to-paper and re-sign with Tulsa for 2018-19, but despite the way last season ended for the Oilers it is widely believed that the Oilers should keep a lot of the core talent moving forward into the new season.
According to Oilers Broadcaster and Vice President of Communications John Peterson, forward Dylan Hubbs announced his retirement recently on social media, and as of this writing, the status of the rest of the players on this list is unknown.
Per ECHL policy, each team was entitled to reserve the rights to a maximum of eight qualified players. Of the eight qualified players, no more than four could be veterans (260 regular season professional hockey games played as of the start of the upcoming 2018-19 season). Players on open qualifying offers cannot be traded.
The qualifying offer must remain open for acceptance until July 16 at which time the qualifying offer becomes null and void and the team may sign the qualified player to any salary or may elect to take no further action. Teams that extend a valid qualifying offer to a non-veteran player shall retain the rights to that qualified player for one playing season.
A team that extends a valid qualifying offer to a veteran player will retain the rights to that veteran until July 16. After July 16, if the veteran player is not signed to a contract by the team, the veteran shall be deemed a restricted free agent and shall be entitled to seek and secure offers of employment from other ECHL teams. Restricted free agents may not be traded.
If a restricted free agent is not signed to either an offer sheet or a contract by an ECHL team by August 1, the player will become an unrestricted free agent.