- Associated Press - Sunday, July 1, 2012

Ryan Suter and Zach Parise chose to take some time to sort through offers from a slew of suitors on the first day of NHL free agency.

Suter’s agent, Neil Sheehy, told The Associated Press that his client wouldn’t make a decision on Sunday and didn’t expect one from him soon.

Parise, meanwhile, said he thinks he’ll make a decision by Monday after opting not to sign a deal to stay with New Jersey and becoming a free agent.

“I’m not at liberty to say right now who’s in or anything like that,” Parise told reporters. “But just because it got to noon, by no means does that say that the Devils aren’t one of my top teams.”


Parise’s agents, Don Meehan and Wade Arnott, didn’t allow teams to have face-to-face meetings with the star forward despite at least one being in the area that was hoping to have an audience with him.

“He has narrowed the list of teams to a small select group,” Meehan wrote in an email to The AP. “The Devils are still in consideration.”

While Suter and Parise waited to make a move, P.A. Parenteau was among the many NHL free agents to accept offers in the opening hours of free agency. Parenteau, a 29-year-old forward coming off a 67-point season with the New York Islanders, signed a four-year contract with Colorado just hours after hitting the market.

Detroit coach Mike Babcock traveled to Toronto to be part of the franchise’s planned pitch to Parise.

“We’re going to get in the mix with him and see what we can do,” Babcock told The AP in a telephone interview minutes after teams could begin talks with free agents. “We’re going to do everything we can.”

The Red Wings, though, had to cancel their plans to send a contingent to talk with Parise in person.

“I called Don Meehan at 12:01 and heard back from him at about 12:30 and he said based upon the phone calls, it would almost be physically impossible to meet with all the interested teams,” Detroit general manager Ken Holland said in a telephone interview. “We were prepared to meet with them, but we can to cancel our plans.”

Holland confirmed he made offers to both Suter and Parise, the best defenseman and forward on the market.

Detroit, though, isn’t the only NHL team with a lot of money to spend in free agency.

The Minnesota Wild posted a message on the team’s Twitter account, announcing they submitted contract offers to Parise and Suter, within the first hour of free agency.

Carolina Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford confirmed he called agents for Parise and Suter to offer deals.

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