David Poile declined to comment Tuesday on the state of negotiations with free agent defenseman Ryan Suter.
A team spokesperson said the Nashville Predators general manager would have nothing to say until Suter settled on a team for the coming season and beyond. In other words, it could be a while.
Three days since the start of the signing period there remains no indication of when Suter will make his choice, let alone what that choice will be.
''When a young man is asked to commit for 13 years, why is it considered extraordinary to take a few days to make a decision?” Suter’s agent Neil Sheehy told the Associated Press in an email. “A deal will happen when it happens.''
Poile attempted to force an answer, at lest in regard to the Predators, on Sunday when he spelled out in full detail exactly what the franchise was prepared to do to keep their 2003 first-round draft choice.
Apparently, all he did enough to not be told no.
Nashville is one of several teams that continue to wait on the 27-year-old, who was selected to his first NHL All-Star Game last season and was a key contributor to the United States’ silver medal performance at the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Multiple outlets reported Tuesday that representatives of the Detroit Red Wings flew to Madison, Wisc., for a face-to-face meeting with Suter. Other teams that either have acknowledged interest or reportedly have made offers include Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Minnesota.
A report out of Philadelphia said the Flyers had offered 12-year deals worth between $80 and $110 million to both Suter and free agent forward Zach Parise. A Tuesday report out of Detroit said the Red Wings upped their offer for Suter to 13 years and $90 million.
Nashville also has acknowledged interest in Parise.
Presumably, all offers include sizable bonus money to be paid up front in order to counter the effect of any decrease to the salary cap or contract structure that might result from current negotiations on a new collective bargaining agreement.
Eventually, Suter is going to have to pick one and get on with the rest of his career. As of now, though, no one can say for sure when that will be.