An excerpt from

Doug: The Doug Harvey Story
by William Brown

The 1951-52 season began on October 11th, almost before the ink was dry on Doug Harvey’s new contract. He was the last player to sign up for the season, which was typical. Every year during the off-season Selke would invite players to his office to sign their contract for the upcoming year. Most players signed without much fuss; Doug Harvey took his time. Selke would place a contract on the desk and Harvey would either slide it back unsigned or take it with him as he left. Nothing was ever decided during the first meeting. Eventually, after the scene was repeated once or twice, he would agree to basically what Selke had offered in the first place.
It wasn’t a negotiating tactic—there wasn’t much to negotiate. In those days, a player was bound to his team until the organization decided otherwise. And Harvey was well paid, he never complained much about money. The reason he held off signing until the last possible moment was that he hated the idea of being owned.