Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
If the rumor mill is any indication, the one team I’d keep a close eye on is the Chicago Blackhawks. GM Dale Tallon has somewhere in the area of $13 million to spend and I fully expect him to come away with one of the higher-end, puck-moving defensemen (Brian Campbell, Wade Redden, Mark Streit or Michal Rozsival) over the course of the next 24-48 hours.
One of the more intriguing side plots I’ll be watching is the level of interest in two players – Todd Bertuzzi and Ray Emery – whose less-than-ideal reputations precede them in a major way.
This morning, NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly spoke with Scott Laughlin on Hockey This Morning (NHL Home Ice XM 204), discussing the free agent frenzy today.
Daly also talks about the new Russian league and provides other updates on NHL happenings.
The New Jersey Devils and defenceman Bryce Salvador have agreed to terms on a four-year deal worth an average of $2.9 million per season.
From Paul Kukla at NHL.com,
While many of you will be sitting back and keeping tabs on all of the UFA movement, some of us will be hard at work. How hard will we be working, well I went to Lyle Richardson, aka Spector and asked him what his UFA days will consist of.
How busy will you be Lyle?
The NHL’s unrestricted free agency period is one of the busiest times of year for me, topping even the NHL trade deadline for sheer volume of traffic. It’s the first two days that are the most hectic as that’s when the bidding for, and the signing of, the top UFA players is at its most frenzied. I’m almost a shut-in during those two days, rarely venturing outside my home as I track the rumors and signings.
Note: For a list of places to watch & listen to updates today, check out this post from Steve yesterday.
The Tampa Bay Lightning gave it their best shot, but forward Brian Rolston is going to unrestricted free agency.
Sources say Rolston informed the Lightning this morning that he would become an unrestricted free agent at 12 noon and see what the market will bear for his services.
via TSN UFA Tracker,
Washington re-signs defenceman Mike Green to a four-year deal worth $5.25-million a season.
added 9:20am, from the Washington Capitals,
“Mike has developed into an impact defenseman in the short time since we drafted him, and he will be a key part of our team moving forward,” McPhee said. “We look forward to his further contributions as we continue to improve the hockey club.”
more on Green…
from Snapshots at Mlive,
Despite the fact that many newspapers don’t publish on Canada Day (Happy Canada Day!), there’s no shortage of multimedia goodness pertaining to Red Wings forward Dan Cleary’s two-day celebration with the Stanley Cup in his home province, Newfoundland:
Global National posted a 2:22 clip of Cleary’s arrival in St. John’s and his trip to Janeway Children’s Hospital;
continued with video links…
from John Shipley of the Pioneer Press,
Though the Wild have roughly $35 million committed to 14 players next season, well below the $56.7 million salary cap, that cap space is deceiving — for several reasons.
First, a substantial chunk of that will go to restricted free agents Pierre-Marc Bouchard, Stephane Veilleux and Kurtis Foster — maybe as much as $6 million if Bouchard isn’t traded. Second, general manager Doug Risebrough doesn’t plan to spend all the way to the cap.
“It’s not that I don’t want to spend up to the cap. The question is, is it worth it in this climate?” Risebrough said Monday. “In this climate, (top) guys are going to get their money. The cap is going up, but I don’t see the quality of free agents.”
from Greg Logan of Newsday,
Generally speaking, Snow will attempt to fill out the roster with young players who have a chance to grow with the team he is trying to build. But he also might add an experienced veteran who could mentor young kids who will be playing major roles and take some pressure off them.
Describing the balance he’s trying to strike, Snow said: “It’s always a Catch-22. We want to be younger; we want to give our young players an opportunity to come into training camp and earn their spot. If some of our young players perform at the level they finished at last season, it won’t be an issue. I just don’t want to bring in older players that would pretty much put our young players in Bridgeport.”
from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,
Holland plans to stay active this afternoon, especially if Mats Sundin hits the market. There’s tremendous interest from the Wings in the 6-foot-5 forward, coming off a season in which he had produced 78 points in 74 games.
There is also some interest in Todd Bertuzzi, the enigmatic forward who played for the Wings from February to May in 2007, and whose contract was just bought out by the Ducks.
more on the Wings…
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.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org