Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Bruce Dowbiggin at the Calgary Herald,
It’s July 1—free-agent liberation day—and agent J.P. Barry rolls through the door of his Calgary office at Creative Artists Agency. The burly Barry has already had a full morning—and the clock has not even hit the magic 10 a.m. opener for offers and signings.
continued… following the day of agent J.P. Barry yesterday.
Raffi Torres is a badass. Check out YouTube. Well, first watch the hysterical spoof from The Daily Show that involved Torres, but then watch Torres’ hits. This guy had 27 goals two seasons ago.
You know who Torres is? He’s a faster-skating Ryan Malone without the public relations help provided by the Stanley Cup Finals. Malone had the eyes of the hockey world on him during the Penguins’ Cup run, and he was awesome. His stock soared. That was Torres just two Cups previous. Big, nasty, feels no pain and lives, breathes and sleeps hockey.
more on Columbus
From Luke DeCock at Lord Stanley’s Blog,
The Canes continued to retool their defense Wednesday, signing defenseman Josef Melichar to a one-year, $1 million contract.
Melichar, 29, spent six seasons with the Penguins before playing last season in Sweden and his native Czech Republic. The 6-foot-2, 202-pounder has seven goals and 33 assists in 310 career NHL games.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
There were a frenzy of signings during Day 1 of the free-agency period. Here’s a look at the top deals so far:
The home run—Parts I and II
• Blackhawks sign defenseman Brian Campbell to eight-year deal ($7.125 million annual average), goalie Cristobal Huet to four years at $5.6 million per season…
Free-agency grade: Campbell, A+; Huet, A-
via the Philadelphia Flyers,
Flyers G.M. Paul Holmgren revealed on Tuesday evening that the club has agreed to a two-year contract extension with restricted free agent defenseman Randy Jones. Jones also took part in a conference call with local reporters regarding his deal.
Randy Jones: “I just talked it over with my agent and kind of looked at the scenario that would have been best for me. With a two-year [deal] I think it worked out the best for myself and for the Flyers.”
from Snapshots at Mlive,
Sport-Express’s Igor Larin says that the New Jersey Devils have offered Sergei Fedorov a contract…
On the Mats Sundin front, Aftonbladet’s Tomas Ros says that Sundin would prefer to stay in the Eastern Conference, though he’s seriously considering the Vancouver Canucks’ 2-year, $20 million contract offer, and Sundin’s Swedish representative, Claes Elefak, told Expressen’s Gunnar Nordstrom that Sundin’s merely “considering” every offer:
read on with translations…
from Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun,
While general manager Kevin Lowe said “the numbers are a little bit inflated” when it comes to the reported $9 million a year deal over a rumoured nine-year term for 29-year-old Slovakian Marian Hossa, in the same breath he added: “Daryl said from the outset he’ll do whatever it takes and spend to the cap.”
The excitement comes from a community unaccustomed to being in the bidding for the most sought-after player in the Canada Day craziness. The fear comes from paying that kind of money to a player who is recognized as more of a follower than a leader, especially if the deal takes him to age 38. That’s the kind of insanity which history suggests more teams live to regret than not.
from Len Ziehm of the Chicago Sun-Times, ‘
‘Huet was the No. 1 goaltender in this [free-agent market],’’ Tallon said. ‘‘We like Nik, but we wanted to make sure we were good in the net. Khabby’s contract is up at the end of the year, and we’ve got a lot of young goalies who aren’t ready yet.’‘
That’s not the stance Tallon took after last season, when he declared that Corey Crawford ‘‘deserves a shot’’ after two good seasons in the minors. And Finland’s Antti Niemi came with rave reviews when Tallon signed him in the offseason.
More to the point, the Hawks probably couldn’t find a taker for the last $6.75 million on Khabibulin’s contract. They might find one as the season winds down, though, and by then Huet will be the solid starter and either Crawford or Niemi the up-and-coming backup.
We couldn’t come to terms with Cristobal Huet even though we met his ask and NOT for a lack of trying. We became very concerned that this player just didn’t want to sign with us so we had to move quickly to sign a new number one goaltender. We believe that Jose Theodore will fit in nicely in DC
-Ted Leonsis at Ted’s Take
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
Hell in a handbasket.
There’s no other way to describe it. When a young man named Jeff Finger (Who?) plays one full season in the NHL, including being a healthy scratch for five of his team’s 10 playoff games, and is rewarded with a contract that pays him a mind-blowing $3.75 million (all figures U.S.) per season – a 733 per cent raise in salary – something’s seriously out of whack.
Somewhere, Bob Goodenow is giggling….
Cliff Fletcher’s no longer the caretaker. He’s in charge indefinitely and there’s a plan in place, or so he says. So we’re all trying to figure it out. Jamal Mayers was brought in because he’s a good guy, and maybe that’s the reason for repatriating Joseph, too, once again establishing the Leafs as the NHL team most likely to employ the same player twice.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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