NHL Free Agent/Trade Speculation: 1 Player Each Team Will Be Without by Game One
Whenever the opening night of the 2012-13 NHL season begins, there are still plenty of moves to be made before it.
There are additions that teams are still looking to make, plenty of free agents looking for a team and several players in limbo of being traded from their current team.
Players looking forward to starting the season with their current team could be shocked to have to move to a new city and put on a new jersey before they even line up for the new season.
Most of these players are surrounded by trade speculation, but with certain teams who aren’t in trade talks, I have listed a player who we know won’t be back as a free agent.
Anaheim: Bobby Ryan
First, Bobby Ryan waited for Zach Parise to sign. Second, he was waiting for Rick Nash to be traded. Now the only reason I can guess why he has not been traded as of yet is Shane Doan.
Once the CBA is taken care of, I would suggest he will be one of the first to be moved.
Boston: Tim Thomas
If there is one guarantee on this list, it’s that Tim Thomas will be playing for a team within the bottom five in payroll by the beginning of the season.
Buffalo: Jochen Hecht
Jochen Hecht served the Buffalo Sabres for many years as a bottom-six centerman and he did a good job of it. That time has come to an end however, as the Sabres have gone in a different direction, namely a more tough and gritty approach to the game.
Calgary: Jay Bouwmeester
This one might be a stretch, but if Calgary can find a team that will take on Bouwmeester’s cap hit and give them at least a good value, they will trade him as soon as possible.
Carolina: Brian Boucher
Boucher had a run of bad luck last year that cost him his backup job to Justin Peters. If Peters can keep that job whenever training camp starts, Boucher will be expendable and there could be more than a few suitors.
Chicago: Andrew Brunette
Brunette was brought into the Chicago Blackhawks’ lineup to provide experience. While he did that and put up a fair amount of points, it did not impact the Blackhawks' playoff finish at all. With Brandon Saad ready to make the jump full-time, Brunette is no longer needed.
Colorado: Paul Stastny
While this might be another stretch, Stastny might end up on the third line this year and no team wants to pay $6.6 million to a third-liner.
Columbus: Kristian Huselius
While Huselius has had his good years, but there have been too many injury-riddled seasons during his stint in Columbus. Any team that takes him on will be taking a big risk.
Dallas: Radek Dvorak
Dallas has had a quiet, mini-rebuild this offseason. They’ve acquired Derek Roy, Jaromir Jagr, Ray Whitney and Aaron Rome, while subtracting Steve Ott, Mike Ribeiro and Radek Dvorak. Dvorak is the only one that hasn’t found a new home and he probably doesn’t have a chance to go back to Dallas.
Detroit: Ty Conklin
Conklin’s second stint in Detroit didn’t exactly go as well as he would have liked. With the Red Wings adding Jonas Gustavsson to push Jimmy Howard, Conklin has been let go to look for other work.
Edmonton: Cam Barker
If you’re a defenseman and get let go by a team with one of the league’s worst defenses, it’s fair to say that your game needs dramatic improvement. It might be a while before Cam Barker finds work elsewhere.
Florida: Matt Bradley
With the success of the Florida Panthers from last year, you would think they would not want to mess with the roster that much. That’s apparently not the case with the Panthers letting Bradley go.
Los Angeles: Scott Parse
As the defending Stanley Cup champions, the Kings did a good job re-signing most of their unrestricted free agents. One of the few they did not sign is Parse, who wasn’t an everyday player for them anyway.
Minnesota: Kurtis Foster
Hey, when you sign two players a combined $196 million, someone has to be let go.
Nashville: Andrei Kostitsyn
Nashville brought in Kostitsyn to see if he could find some consistency playing with his brother Sergei. It didn’t work, and Andrei is now looking for a new team.
New Jersey: Petr Sykora
Even after playing well enough to earn a spot on the Devils' roster in last year’s training camp, the Devils have decided not to bring him back. Hopefully it’s because of the ownership situation, because a player like Sykora would be great for a locker room that lost its captain in Zach Parise.
New York Islanders: Mark Eaton
With the departure of Eaton, the New York Islanders are looking to bring in at least another young defenseman if the Lubomir Visnovsky deal gets reversed.
Ottawa: Robin Lehner
The Ottawa Senators have a real opportunity right now. With Craig Anderson set as the starter for the near future and Ben Bishop the backup/future starter, the Senators could be in line to deal Lehner to a team that wants a young goaltender. They could get a good return.
Philadelphia: Matt Read
If the Philadelphia Flyers really want Bobby Ryan, they are going to have to give up some good young talent. The Flyers don’t want to give up Sean Couturier or Brayden Schenn, so they will have to give up a player like Read.
Phoenix: Shane Doan
Shane Doan has been unbelievably loyal to the Phoenix Coyotes. Nobody can blame him for that, but its time he moved on.
Pittsburgh: Paul Martin
The Pittsburgh Penguins would love to take the salary of Paul Martin and kiss it goodbye. It will be really tough though.
St. Louis: Carlo Colaiacovo
If the St. Louis Blues were going to bring Colaiacovo back, they would have by now.
San Jose: Dominic Moore
The San Jose Sharks went into the offseason after a disappointing year looking to make small changes. One of those changes is letting Moore go. The question is: Where will he sign? I mean, somebody has to trade him at the deadline.
Tampa Bay: Brett Clark
With the additions of Matt Carle and Sami Salo, Clarke became expendable. It’s surprising that he hasn’t found a new home yet.
Toronto: Jeff Finger
The Toronto Maple Leafs have been waiting for Finger’s contract to end since it began. It finally has and he’s gone.
Vancouver: Roberto Luongo
Until Luongo is no longer wearing a Vancouver jersey, any list like this is going to have him in this spot.
Washington: Mike Knuble
The Washington Capitals let go two of their more known players from last season in Alex Semin and Mike Knuble. Semin found a new home in Carolina, but Knuble has yet to.
Winnipeg: Evander Kane
If the rumors that Evander Kane wants out of Winnipeg are indeed true, the Jets might not have a choice in letting him go.
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