Kukla's Korner Hockey
From the AP via NHL.com,
Signing Paul Kariya to a three-year, $18 million free agent contract was a bit of a budget-busting move for the rebuilding St. Louis Blues.
But that doesn’t mean the franchise’s next move will be balancing the ledger with the payroll now at about $44 million, or about $4 million higher than new ownership had projected. Team president John Davidson said Tuesday no corresponding transactions are planned, and added the franchise isn’t out of the dwindling free agent market yet.
from the CP via NHL.com,
He heads to training camp a different player after a full comeback season under his belt. He missed two years after recovering from a serious knee injury and ended up with 40 points (16-24) in 76 games with the Phoenix Coyotes last season when he earned $1.225 million.
“I think the biggest issue I had last year was getting my timing down,” Nolan said on a conference call. “After being two years off, my timing took quite a while to come back, more than I expected. . . . Once I got that under control, I felt more free in the game, and I don’t think that’s going to be an issue this year.
“I know what to expect now, I know what the pace of the game is. I just expect to have a good year.”
via the Minnesota Wild,
Minnesota Wild President and General Manager Doug Risebrough today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has signed free agent goaltender Nolan Schaefer to a multi-year contract.
“Nolan is a young goaltender with a strong record in the minor leagues and some experience in the NHL, and has great potential to become a full-time NHL goaltender,” said Assistant General Manager/Hockey Operations Tom Lynn.
via the Edmonton Oilers, The Edmonton Oilers have signed free agent goaltender Mathieu Garon to a two-year contract.
The 600th KK member registered over this past weekend, which means we’ll be doing another random draw amongst all KK members. The prize is gift certificate for $25 for either Shop.NHL.com or IceJerseys.com. Paul will do the drawing in the next 24 hours and the winner will be contacted by Friday.
The next drawing will take place after the 800th member registers (which is free, simple and allows you to enter various other contests over the season, too).
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And now, back to the hockey news…
from Terry Frei at ESPN,
On the day the Avalanche brought their newest signees to town and went through the obligatory jersey-and-hat presentations in front of the cameras and microphones, team officials even said that some of the fans who finally had realized that season tickets no longer were the only way to get in the building and couldn’t sell themselves on the huge expenditure called in Monday and asked if they could get their seats back.
At this point, at least in Denver, it’s about perception.
“They’re both looking for a Stanley Cup and we’re looking for another one,” Avalanche general manager Francois Giguere said of Smyth and Hannan.
The risk, as with most of the high-profile deals announced Monday, isn’t so much tied to the expenditures, but the commitments.
RDS is reporting that Eric Belanger has been signed by the Minnesota Wild for $5.2 million over 3 years.
(English Google translation here.)
Update 5:15pm ET
The Wild still haven’t provided a press release confirming this, but Radio-Canada, which RDS indicates is the original source of this story, has a quote from Belanger himself confirming the deal. (*using the translation tool again):
“I am really glad to join the Wild”, affirms Bélanger. “Jacques Lemaire and Doug Risebrough intend to make me play on one of the first two lines. I intend to seize my chance.”
Update 5:35pm ET: TSN provides that the deal is specifically $5.25 million.
Columbus Blue Jackets:
Jiri Novotny has signed a two-year contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets, the club announced on Tuesday. Terms were not disclosed.
The 23-year-old rookie split time between the Buffalo Sabres and Washington Capitals in 2006/07
Sportsnet.ca’s trade tracker notes that both Matt Carkner (1 year) and Danny Bois (2 years) have been signed by the club. No financial terms available.
Holland made it sound that Rafalski’s signing signals the team won’t look to resign free agent Danny Markov, who earned $2.5 million last season.
“Another (defenceman) isn’t our priority,” Holland said. “We’re not looking for anybody significant. If we’re going to do something on D, maybe it’s a month from now.”
Holland does hope to have goalie Dominik Hasek signed before the end of this week. Both sides seem to agree that Detroit is where the 42-year-old goaltender wants to be.
“(Agent) Ritch Winter told me Dom wants to be here,” Holland said. “We’re close in a lot of area. I’m hoping to finish this off in a day or two.”
more on the Wings… inlcuding no more “big” signings…
The New Jersey Devils have signed unrestricted free agent forward Dainius Zubrus to a 6-year contract, TFP has learned.
*More info on Zubrus weighing his options noted earlier today on KK...
Update 3:22pm ET:
Zubrus is, in fact, listed on the official roster at the New Jersey Devils website at this time.
Update 3:25pm ET:
From TSN - “The New Jersey Devils have signed centre Dainius Zubrus to a 6-year contract.”
Update 4:02pm ET:
TSN’s site has updated to state financial terms for Zubrus contract. Signing is for 6 years for $20.4 million.
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