Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Bill Clement at NBC Sports,
On July 1 the NHL’s shopping spree for unrestricted free agents begins and the big-ticket items – mega stars like Jaromir Jagr, Marian Hossa and Mats Sundin—will draw lucrative deals. But there will be some lesser names in the free-agent pool whose value to their teams will make their new salaries seem very cost effective. Here are my top six players who could fall into that category.
read on about Markus Naslund, Sean Avery, Ryan Malone and Mark Streit…
To former NHL goaltender Kelly Hrudey, the charismatic and articulate [Barry] Melrose is the man who saved his playing career.
It was in the midst of that memorable ‘93 season that Melrose — named Tuesday as head coach of the Tampa Bay Lightning — rescued Hrudey from a two-month slump the netminder thought would spell the end of his professional career.
“It was my 10th year in the National Hockey League,” Hrudey, a Hockey Night in Canada analyst, told CBCSports.ca. “He did things that probably not a lot of people would have back then. It resurrected my career and got me back on track, and I ended up playing another five years.”
from David Pollak of Working the Corners,
The Sharks are expected to announce this afternoon that three players have been re-signed: veteran forward Jeremy Roenick, back-up goalie Brian Boucher and center Joe Pavelski.
more on the Sharks including some Michal Rozsival talk…
Update 4:15pm ET: The SJ Sharks have informed us they are conducting a press conference call in a few minutes, confirming these signings.
via Jim Gintonio of the Arizona Republic,
The Coyotes on Wednesday traded a fifth-round pick in 2009 (acquired from Boston last season) to the Ottawa Senators for big right wing Brian McGrattan.
from Rich Hammond at Inside the Kings,
Question: Of course it’ll be up to the new coach, but does Lombardi REALLY see this team moving forward with LaBarbara in goal? And who would be the backup? Knowing DL, I highly doubt he expects Bernier to make the lineup next year, so what do the Kings intend to do? And are they planning on re-signing Ersberg? I could live with him starting in goal over LaBarbara.
Answer: The plan, at the moment, is to go with LaBarbera and Ersberg. That’s not to say that one of the young guys couldn’t surprise them in training camp, but the Kings don’t go into training camp counting on that to happen.
From George Richards at On Frozen Pond in the Miami Herald:
Speaking of Mats [Sundin], the City of Sunrise has agreed to change its name to “Sundin, Florida” if Mats decides to sign with the Panthers. “No one knows where we’re at anyway,’’ one Sunrise official lamented. “Some people like to call us ‘North Weston’ or ‘South Tamarac.’ It doesn’t matter.’‘
From Damien Cox in The Spin at the Toronto Star,
Fair or not, Tucker was viewed as one of the leaders of the so-called Muskoka Five, a gang now broken up by GM Cliff Fletcher. Fletcher vowed big changes, and you have to give him credit for following through. Tucker’s gone, Mats Sundin’s all but gone, and Kyle Wellwood, John Pohl and Andrew Raycroft are also no longer Leafs.
Bryan McCabe, by autumn, will almost certainly be playing somewhere else, as well. So the players who banded together to defy the wishes of management and remain Leafs at the 2008 trade deadline have, really, gained very little in the end.
Tomas Kaberle, at this point, seems the only one of the five certain to stick around.
from the Florida Panthers blog at the Sun-Sentinel,
I just spoke on the phone to Joe Nieuwendyk, who was playing with his kids and sounded like he’s enjoying the extra time with family. Anyhow, here are his thoughts on a few issues:
Q: What are you looking to do when your contract runs out with the Panthers on June 30? Are the Maple Leafs, your former team, a team you’d want to work for?
A: “I’m keeping my options open. I should know more down the road. ...I’d certainly would listen to what they have to say. [A move there] may or may not make sense.
From Pierre LeBrun at Sportsnet,
The NHL’s money season is just around the corner. Come Tuesday, July 1, the wallets come out in full force from the NHL’s 30 teams. Here’s my look at some notable players slated for unrestricted free agency (with age and current team also listed):
Marian Hossa, 29, Pittsburgh Penguins:
GM Ray Shero is off the hook here. He offered Hossa $7 million a year and a chance to continue playing alongside the best centre in the world. That’s a darn generous offer given all the other moving parts Shero has to figure out on his roster.
read on for the estimated values of a pile of UFAs
The Florida Panthers placed veteran centre Jozef Stumpel on waivers on Wednesday, making him a buyout candidate if he clears at Noon et/9am pt on Thursday.
Stumpel is entering the last season of a two-year contract extension that will pay him $2.25 million. The 35-year-old had seven goals and 20 points in 52 games last season.
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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