Around the League

NHL Free Agency Open Thread/Live Blog

NHL free agency is upon us. Players are free to sign wherever they want as of noon today. The trade madness went down on Wednesday, with a few moves affecting the Rangers. Bob McKenzie is predicting that Milan Lucic goes to Edmonton, Andrew Ladd to the Islanders, Frans Nielsen to Detroit, Loui Eriksson to Vancouver, and Troy Brouwer to Calgary. Let’s see how much of that he gets right. Personally, I think all that sounds right, plus I think Eric Staal goes to the Isles. They are getting gutted right now and need to replace them.

I’d like to see the Rangers target Brandon Pirri and Michael Latta. Both are going to come cheap as unqualified RFAs. Latta would be a great fit for the fourth line, and is tremendous in his own zone. Pirri can be a low budget 20-30 point guy in the right situation/deployment. I’d also like to see Viktor Stalberg back. Of course, this is on the right deal.

I will be live blogging the frenzy. So check back early and often. Expect GMs to lose their minds, and all of us to laugh at a few deals. It’s inevitable, as Justin said this morning.

  • Detroit re-signed Darren Helm to a five year deal at $3.85m per year.
  • Montreal has signed Alex Radulov, 1 year, $5.75m.
  • Brian Campbell signed in Chicago for one year, $2m.
  • Patrick Wiercioch will sign with Colorado, 1 year, $800k.
  • Kyle Okposo to Buffalo for 7 years, $6m.
  • James Reimer signs in Florida for 5 years, $3.4m per year.
  • The Flyers seem to be the front runners for Dale Weise on a four year deal. Yikes.
  • Ladd to the Isles for 7 years, $5.5m per year.
  • Eriksson to the Canucks for 6 years, $6m per year.
  • Anton Khudobin re-signs in Boston, two years, $1.2m.
  • Lucic to Edmonton. So far McKenzie is three for three. Seven years, $42m.
  • David Perron to St. Louis, 2 years, $3.875m
  • Panthers sign Colton Sceviour ($950k, 2 yrs) and Jonathan Marchessault (2 yrs, $750k).
  • Nielsen to Detroit, 6 years $5.25m.
  • David Backes to Boston on a five year deal, $6m per season.
  • Aaron Ekblad signs his extension in Florida, 8 years, $7.5m per year.
  • Eric Staal to Minnesota – 3 years, $3.5m.
  • Troy Brouwer to Calgary – four years, $4.5m.
  • Tom Gilbert to LA for 1 year, $1.4m.
  • Jason Chimera to the Isles, 2 years, $2.25m.
  • Ben Lovejoy to the Devils for 3 years, $2.66m.
  • Chad Johnson to Calgary for 1 year, $1.7m.
  • Jamie McGinn to Arizona, 3 years, $3.33m.
  • Chris Stewart to Minnesota – 2 years, $2.3m.
  • Vernon Fiddler to the Devils, 1 year, $1.25m.
  • Rangers sign Adam Clendening, 1 year, $600k ($300k AHL).
  • Dale Weise to Philly, 4 years, $2.35m.
  • David Schlemko to San Jose.
  • Jonas Gustavsson to Edmonton, 1 year.
  • Viktor Stalberg goes to Carolina, 1 year, $1.5m. Surprised the Rangers couldn’t/didn’t match this.
  • Victor Hedman re-ups in Tampa – 8 years, $7.875m per.
  • Yanick Weber to Nashville because the Hockey Gods have a great sense of humor.
  • Al Montoya to Montreal.
  • Devante Smith-Pelley to New Jersey, 2 years, $1.3m.
  • Matt Irwin to Nashvile, 2 years.
  • Dan Hamhuis to Dallas, two years, $3.75m.
  • Rangers sign Michael Grabner, 2 years $1.6m.
  • Rangers sign Nathan Gerbe – 1 year, $600k.
  • Lee Stempniak to the Canes, 2 years, $2.5m per.
  • Andrei Vasilevskiy extends in Tampa for 3 years, $3.5m. This spells the end of the Ben Bishop era.
  • Joe Colborne signs in Colorado, 2 years, $2.5m.
  • Shawn Matthias to the Jets.
  • Fedor Tyutin to Colorado, 1 year, $2m.
  • Brett Connolly to Washington, 1 year, $850k.
  • Matt Martin to Toronto, 4 years at $2.5m per year. Really happy the Rangers avoided this one.
  • Detroit lands Thomas Vanek to a one year, $2.6m deal.

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    • Holy crap. What an awful signing. Nice to see that Garth is undoing all his good work in two feel swoops, the Boychuk deal and this Ladd disaster.

      If you are giving 7 years to 30 year old Ladd why not just sign 27 year old Okposo for 7 years instead?

    • “Go get ’em.”

      He’ll be one of those guys that doesn’t sign for like two/three weeks. That asking price is absurd.

    • That’s an agent doing his job. The surprise will come if he actually gets that. I can’t see him getting that – I expect a 1 or 2 year deal – then again, free agency surprises me every year.

    • That’s Dom Moore (or Tanner Glass) money, $1.5M a year. It’s actually not that crazy. If I were a team like Buffalo or Edmonton that needs some solid bottom 6 vets to go with their talented top 6, that’s a great deal.

      If E. Staal is really done he can be stashed in the minors and only carry a $500K cap hit.

      Someone is going to sign him for 2 years and $3M+ and be very happy with that.

  • Free agency man. Teams really do lose their minds with the money/term given out.

    Reimer for 5 years @ $3.4M?!

    Ladd and Eriksson (both 30) get 7 and 6 year deals.

    Lucic 7 @ $6M is lunacy.

    Rangers saved themselves this year by being in cap hell.

  • Nielsen to Detroit, 6 years $5.25m.
    Eric Staal to Minnesota – 3 years, $3.5m.
    Troy Brouwer to Calgary – four years, $4.5m.

    We’re talking per yr here, right?

    To me, Staal to Min means no NYR center to Min means no defensemen out of Min coming to NY…..

  • I must admit is sucks not participating in this at all. I also think the teams that we can move anyone to is dwindling.

    Hope Beuk has lots of defensive schemes that protects pylons.

    • I think it’s great! Almost every FA signing in the NHL ends up being a regrettable one.

      There was no way Staal or Girardi was getting traded now. If those guys get dealt it will be closer to training camp, once the dust settles from FA.

      • I do love that Chimera signing. He would have been perfect for the Rangers, big, fast, mean. A key cog for a strong bottom 6.

        Let me rephrase what I said right above, the big ticket FA signings almost always are regrettable.

      • Don’t even bother moving Staal or Girardi until next year. Rehabilitate them, play a style that flatters them. Have the coach and the GM work together.

        • You mean AV should change his system to suit the players? Maybe Beuke can impose his will on AV. That would be progress.

          • I’m going to hire Madame Yolanda to stick pins in her voodoo doll and make it happen. AV will say, “Jeff, it’s all in your hands. Make me look good, OK?”

  • Pirri: 3 teams, 3 years, all mid season trades, not qualified.

    Even Stevie Wonder should be able to read between the lines.

      • The PPG output for his TOI is impressive, but some folks can’t read tea leaves. If there isn’t a metric, it doesn’t exist.

        Yet Pirri still sits there and they don’t understand how this is possible.

  • I well remember the early Slats days when it was the Rangers doling out these stupid inflated contracts for ridiculous numbers of years with NMC like Lucic for 7 years. Free agent frenzy is more like General Manager Lunacy.

  • Maybe I’m missing this among the list, but I think you forgot to include the blockbuster acquisition Philly made signing Boyd Gordon…

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