Category Archives: Free Agents
Jason Arnott (C)
The 38-year-old is coming off a decent season with the Blues in which he scored 17 times and added 17 assists. Not surprisingly, a number of teams have been kicking the tires; however, there will be concerns about his ability to keep up and, also, to stay healthy. (Salary in 2011-12: $2.5 million)
Chris Campoli (D)
One of the NHLPA’s most outspoken members during the lockout, Campoli is hoping his commitment to the cause won’t cost him a job. Slowed by a leg injury last season, the 28-year-old appeared in just 43 games for Montreal, averaging 17:12 of ice time per game. Given the market for depth defensemen, Campoli should find a home somewhere. (Salary in 2011-12: $1.75 million)
Brett Clark (D)
Another potential depth d-man. Clark, 36, played all 82 games for the Lightning in 2011-12. His minus-26 rating was the fifth worst in the league, and that won’t look great on his résumé. But as always with plus-minus, it may not tell the whole story if he was playing tough minutes. (Salary in 2011-12: $1.3 million)
Daymond Langkow (C)
Just as depth on the back end is important, so is depth down the middle. Langkow, 36, appeared in all 16 playoff games for Phoenix last season, scoring once and adding six assists while playing 15:25 per game. He probably won’t score 77 points again like he did with Calgary in 2006-07, but if he wants a job, he should be able to find one. We hear the Coyotes are looking for a center. (Salary in 2011-12: $4.5 million)
Petr Sykora (RW)
Despite scoring 21 times last season in New Jersey, Sykora doesn’t fit in the Devils’ plans, according to GM Lou Lamoriello. The 36-year-old slowed down in the playoffs with just two goals in 18 games. (Salary in 2011-12: $650,000)
The Vancouver Canucks have agreed to terms on a one-year, $700,000 pro-rated deal with free agent defenceman Cam Barker.
Barker, 26, dressed in 23 games for the Texas Stars of the AHL this season, recording eight points and 24 penalty minutes. He played in 25 games with the Edmonton Oilers last season, scoring 2 goals and picking up 23 penalty minutes.
It looks like Brian Boucher will have some competition for the backup job in goal during Carolina’s training camp.
Former Ducks and Predators goalie Dan Ellis has landed a spot on the Hurricanes’ camp roster (PDF) to earn a spot behind Cam Ward. Ellis had been playing with the team’s AHL affiliate in Charlotte, and according to TSN’s Bob McKenzie he’ll soon have a contract with Carolina to go with it, potentially a two-way deal.
The Rangers, confronting a cap squeeze next season, are believed to have offered Del Zotto a two-year contract worth north of $2.4 million per season. The defenseman, who had been looking for a longer-term deal before the lockout, is believed to be seeking approximately $3 million per season for two years.
“There’s only so much you can do with these ‘gap’ contracts,” Sather said, referring to contracts for players coming out of Entry Level. “Michael must have his reasons for doing what he’s doing, but the way the system works, he’s going to have to wait his turn.”
He was almost unrecognizable stalking the ice for the Toronto Marlies late last year. Still sporting the familiar #28, Colton Orr was in the midst of a transformation, a transformation desperately required of a player whose stock in the NHL had plummeted, a fighter whose career hung in the balance.
“Even though it was probably a great disappointment for him to be sent to the American League, it was almost a necessary thing to happen for him because it let us basically pull down that reset button for 10 seconds and this hockey player restarted himself and a new guy popped out,” Marlies head coach Dallas Eakins told TSN.ca.
His hair now trim and proper, his body and game redefined, Orr is attempting a return to the Maple Leafs this season.
Mike Knuble is an unrestricted free agent who needs a home. And it’s a good bet that the ex-Washington Capitals right wing will find it before the shortened 2013 NHL season begins.
Knuble, 40, experienced a down year in 2011-12, but he scored 20-plus goals in the previous eight seasons. Right now, he’s waiting for the new CBA to be official.
“You hear dates of when camps are going to open, are they going bring guys to the camps on tryouts? Are they going have to sign everybody?” Knuble said. “Who knows what’s going to happen here.”
The Senators are trying to find help for their thin blueline.
With defenceman Jared Cowen gone for the season after hip surgery and utility blueliner Mike Lundin out with a broken thumb he suffered in Europe for a month, Senators GM Bryan Murray and assistant Tim Murray are looking for help.
Though agents for five or six free UFA’s — including Chris Campoli, Colin White and Milan Jurcina — have contacted the Senators to see if they have any interest, Bryan Murray may opt to go the trade route before camp opens.
Jim Vandermeer and Cam Barker played for the Chicago Blackhawks during the 2006-07 season. Now the unrestricted free agents are playing a waiting game.
Barker is trying to play his way back into the NHL via a professional tryout with the Vancouver Canucks and Vandermeer is hoping the Presidents’ Trophy winners see him as a depth defenceman. With a back end that consists of Dan Hamhuis, Kevin Bieksa, Alex Edler, Jason Garrison, Keith Ballard, Chris Tanev and Andrew Alberts, there’s a real need for a dependable No. 8 because a condensed 48-game season will expose everyone to a heightened risk of injury in a sprint toward the playoffs.
Alex Kovalev is getting another shot at the National Hockey League.
Miami Herald writer George Richards tweeted Tuesday that the former NHL veteran is in Pompano, Florida with the Panthers and will attend their training camp when it gets under way.
Next summer’s crop looks even weaker, with few candidates available who can reasonably step in and play top-four minutes. The best of the bunch from a long-term Oilers perspective is likely this group of four:
Alexander Edler. The offensive defenceman hit career highs last year in goals (11) assists (38) points (49) and shots (228). The Canucks leaned on Edler heavily in an offensive role to make up for the departure of Christian Ehrhoff – he got power play time, tons of offensive starts and typically managed to duck the toughest assignments (which went to the Hamhuis/Bieksa pairing). Despitep laying those sorts of minutes for the powerhouse Canucks, Edler finished with a disappointing plus/minus (even) and struggled mightily in the post-season. Still, as a 6’3”, 27-year old offensive defenceman playing top-four minutes on a contender, he’s going to get paid.
Rob Scuderi. The no-nonsense defensive defender was overshadowed by regular partner Drew Doughty’s transcendent play en route to Los Angeles’ Stanley cup victory, but even so he logged heavy minutes on the Kings’ blue line and offers major value to any team as a shutdown defender. At 34, he’s in the tail end of his career yet is still young compared to much of 2013’s free agent class.
Ian White. Last summer, the Detroit Red Wings paid him less than $3 million/season on a two-year deal. He’s likely to get both more money and term this time around. The 29-year old White found success in a top-pairing role in Detroit (he actually led the Red Wings blue line in time on ice at even-strength last year). Now, he’ll need to prove he can be successful without Lidstrom – a partner who seemed to help him significantly last year.
Jordan Leopold. A regular member of the Buffalo Sabres’ top four last season, Leopold’s the sort of cheaper option some team will be forced to settle for next summer. The 32-year old isn’t a high-end offensive option but is capable in both zones and with or without the puck.