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Arbitrator OK's Murray buyout

Posted by Kevin Paul Dupont, Globe Staff  June 18, 2009 03:36 PM

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LAS VEGAS -- The Bruins didn't come here with the idea of hitting a jackpot, but they found out just after noon here that they won't have to shell out another $1.4 million to ex-right winger Glen Murray.

Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli just confirmed that arbitrator Richard Bloch ruled that the Bruins were within their rights last summer to buy out the final year of Murray's deal, which was to pay the veteran goal scorer $1.45 million.

Murray argued, in the weeks following the buyout, that he was injured at the time the Bruins rendered the buyout, and thus he should have been ineligible to be bought out, per the protections of the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Bloch disagreed, noting in his written decision, said Chiarelli, that Murray was too late seeking a second medical opinion, a key and necessary ingredient in structuring his grievance.

''Truth is, I feel badly for Glen,'' said Chiarelli, here for tonight's NHL Award ceremonies, which could see Tim Thomas, Zdeno Chara and Claude Julien leave with hardware. ''But we are just following the rules.''

Per standard buyout procedures, the final year of Murray's contrat was discounted by one-third, and the payout to be paid the balance over two seasons. The Bruins this past season paid him $1.383 million, which counted agianst the cap. They are obligated to pay him another $1.383 million in 2009-'10, which also will count against the cap. He will receive no more money after the upcoming season.

The victory, however, could limit Chiarelli's ability to sign free agents and other roster players for the upcoming season. Had Bloch ruled in Murray's favor, he would have been made whole in salary, but the Bruins would have been able to remove the $1.383 from the upcoming cap figure.

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