Ex-Caps right wing Mike Knuble should get NHL contract

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.”

What should happen as soon as a brief free agency period opens is Knuble signing a one-year deal, most likely as a role player on a contender.

Barring an unbelievable change of heart, the Caps won’t bring him back. But that wouldn’t stop the Detroit Red Wings, who just lost Tomas Holmstrom to retirement, the Pittsburgh Penguins or Boston Bruins. Penguins coach Dan Bylsma is a noted fan of Knuble’s.

Knuble talked about a tryout, but it’s believed that a guy with his resume should be able to get a guaranteed contract, even if it’s at or near the veteran minimum.