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Cue the comeback: LaRose, ‘Canes agree to minor-league contract

Jul 29, 2014, 7:01 PM EST

Chad LaRose Getty Images

After a year away from the game, Chad LaRose is ready to return.

On Tuesday, LaRose agreed to a contract with Carolina’s AHL affiliate in Charlotte, per the Raleigh News & Observer. The move reunited the 32-year-old with the only NHL organization he’s ever known — LaRose appeared in over 500 games for the ‘Canes from 2005-13 — and began the reconciliation process after a bizarre breakup.

Remember that? Following the lockout-shortened ’13 campaign, LaRose went AWOL for a few days and bailed on his end-of-season meeting, virtually disappearing from the scene:

His contract with the Hurricanes expired June 30. He didn’t show up for his end-of-season exit interview, according to Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford. He has not been reachable through multiple phone or text messages this summer.

LaRose joined the Hurricanes as an unknown. He leaves a mystery.

Later, LaRose surfaced to explain why he bailed.

“I needed a cool-off period as opposed to going right in and blowing up,” he explained last August. “Nobody was happy we didn’t make the playoffs again. I took some time, cooled off, and then I went and saw everyone, talked to [general manager Jim Rutherford], paid my respects and thanked them for the opportunity with them.”

The frustration was understandable, because LaRose’s final year in Carolina was pretty ugly. After scoring a career-high 32 points in ’11-12, he registered just four in 35 games on a bad ‘Canes team, posting a minus-8 rating while averaging a mere 12:51 TOI per night. But after this summer’s regime change — Ron Francis took over for Rutherford as GM, and Kirk Muller was replaced behind the bench by Bill Peters — it seemed as though the door was open for a return, most notably when Francis expressed optimism regarding LaRose’s comeback.

Carolina also has some history in the reclamation project department. Last year, the club inked center Manny Malhotra to an AHL deal after he’d been sidelined with a significant eye injury. Malhotra worked his way up to the ‘Canes, signed an NHL deal and scored 13 points in 69 games before becoming a finalist for the Masterton Trophy, which eventually went to Rangers forward Dominic Moore.

  1. raleighcaniac - Jul 29, 2014 at 7:34 PM

    Small news outside of the Canes faithful but he was/is an energy guy and fan fav. If he stayed in shape maybe a good 3rd or 4th line winger. Good luck Chad.

  2. adamal17 - Jul 29, 2014 at 7:40 PM

    I was lucky enough to watch him play in Plymouth in the OHL and actually got to play against him in a couple pick up games at Compuware. I was a goalie and he made me realize the distance between beer league guys and any pro level players. Class act guy though. The Plymouth Whalers owner also owns the Canes (So that’s why you see so many Plymouth Whalers and OHL players on or drafted by the Canes) and he loved Chad. He did so much for the Whalers and the community in his time in plymouth. Good to see he’s got a chance to redeem himself this year; there aren’t many other guys who deserve another chance more than Larose. Good luck!

  3. blomfeld - Jul 29, 2014 at 7:49 PM

    WHATEVER …

    and in an unrelated story, Billy Bob Ray fixed a flat tire on his truck !

    executive summary: NHL hockey has ‘no’ place in the old former confederacy (CSA)

    • adamal17 - Jul 29, 2014 at 8:03 PM

      And you’re the first person to jump at anyone who says hockey doesn’t belong in Cali. The canes have won a cup and are a class act organization. Remember when the Kings went in to bankruptcy in the 90’s and had employees go to jail for so many unethical tactics? Or was that before you became a fan in 2012? Comments like yours are just as bad as racially directed comments.

      • blomfeld - Jul 29, 2014 at 8:23 PM

        Listen pal …

        Yes, I ‘vividly’ remember those dark years of McNall and company making a mockery of our LA Kings, the one ‘sunbelt’ expansion team which has actually stood the test of time. And I also recall many other ‘difficult’ chapters in our history. So while I know that you people ‘mean well’ and all, kindly save the insults until you’ve been in the league for ’47 x years’ like we have ! … ya dig ?

        GO KINGS !!! … SC CHAMPIONS & GREATEST TEAM IN THE WORLD !!! :)

      • adamal17 - Jul 29, 2014 at 8:37 PM

        I’m a Wings fan and have lived in the suburbs of Detroit for my entire life…Pal. 88 years in the league and eleven cups. We’ve had more consecutive playoff appearances than your team has playoff appearances at all…ya dig? Fact of the matter is every team in the league deserves a team, even Arizona. They all have fans that support their organization and show up for games with money in hand. The owners of the Canes have been in hockey since the 80’s…owning several teams in the Detroit and mid west area…and even Florida. The Winnipeg Jets have only been in the NHL since 2011…do you want to trash them and their fans as well?

      • blomfeld - Jul 29, 2014 at 9:28 PM

        my mistake pal … I completely forgot that Raleigh was in Detroit …

      • adamal17 - Jul 29, 2014 at 9:49 PM

        I guess you must have missed geography that day in the California lesson plan. Or comprehending sentence structure for that matter.

      • blomfeld - Jul 31, 2014 at 1:12 AM

        Rattus Norvegicus …

        One of the largest muroids, it is a brown or grey rodent with a body up to 25 cm (10 in) long, and a similar tail length; the male weighs on average 350 g (12 oz) and the female 250 g (9 oz). Thought to have originated in northern China, this rodent has now spread to all continents except Antarctica, and is the dominant rat in Europe and much of North America, making it by at least this particular definition the most successful mammal on the planet after humans. With rare exceptions, the brown rat lives wherever humans live, particularly in urban areas and on sports internet sites.

  4. raleighcaniac - Jul 29, 2014 at 7:54 PM

    Hey Blomfeld lose your Vag and let us know when your balls drop.

    • blomfeld - Jul 29, 2014 at 8:28 PM

      you people screwed up on day 2 at Gettysburg … you should’ve gone ‘right’ like Hood suggested eh ? :)

      • storminator16 - Jul 29, 2014 at 9:07 PM

        Drunk, fat, sloppy CBS Elvis. Good choice.

      • storminator16 - Jul 29, 2014 at 9:10 PM

        Saw the video and realized that was 4 years before drunk, fat, sloppy CBS Elvis. My apologies to drunk, fat, sloppy CBS Elvis lovers everywhere.

      • blomfeld - Jul 29, 2014 at 9:32 PM

        Newsflash Einstein ! … Elvis never touched liquor … and as a 4th degree black belt in karate, even as the fat ‘pill-popping’ addict which he was back in 77, Elvis would still kick your sorry ass every day that end’s with a ‘y’ !

    • blomfeld - Jul 31, 2014 at 1:12 AM

      Rattus Norvegicus …

      One of the largest muroids, it is a brown or grey rodent with a body up to 25 cm (10 in) long, and a similar tail length; the male weighs on average 350 g (12 oz) and the female 250 g (9 oz). Thought to have originated in northern China, this rodent has now spread to all continents except Antarctica, and is the dominant rat in Europe and much of North America, making it by at least this particular definition the most successful mammal on the planet after humans. With rare exceptions, the brown rat lives wherever humans live, particularly in urban areas and on sports internet sites.

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