Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 09/06/05 at 06:05 PM ET
Veterans Peter Bondra and Vincent Damphousse headline the list of unrestricted free agents still looking for work but the real action these days is with the restricted free agents, where NHL stars such as Ilya Kovalchuk, Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg have yet to re-sign with training camps just around the corner. Kovalchuk, who shared the Rocket Richard Trophy as top NHL goal-scorer with 41 in 2003-04, can be an unrestricted free agent in July 2008 so Atlanta Thrashers GM Don Waddell would like to get the 22-year-old sniper under contract for more than three years. But that will come at a price, likely around $6 million US a season.and about Datsyuk and Zetterberg,
Datsyuk, 27, signed a deal with Russian club Avangard Omsk, a one-year contract apparently worth $6 million. If the deal includes an out-clause, and it would be a shock if it didn't, then he remains free to re-sign with the Detroit Red Wings but GM Ken Holland can't dish out that kind of money. He only has about $7 million under the $39-million cap and has to re-sign Datsyuk and Zetterberg. Holland, who spoke to Zetterberg's agent last Thursday, hoped to resume talks with the Swede's agent this week. As for Datsyuk, who has been unsigned since last summer, Holland had long feared this would be a difficult process. "I negotiated from May 2004 to early September 2004 with them and we were so far apart at that point in time that I guess I was figuring if we picked up where we left off we were a long ways apart," Holland said Tuesday. "We'll see what happens."
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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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