NHL Trade Rumors and Free Agency 2013: Live Updates from Around the League
Following a four-month lockout that was all about keeping rising NHL salaries in check, Friday's first day of free agency looked a lot like every other year.
By the time the day was done, owners around the league had handed out over $400 million in more than 60 separate deals.
The biggest news of the day happened at the starting gun, when Daniel Alfredsson turned his back on his 17-year history with the Ottawa Senators to take a run at the Stanley Cup with the Detroit Red Wings.
The Sens didn't take the news lying down, engineering a trade with the Anaheim Ducks for star winger Bobby Ryan.
The Toronto Maple Leafs were also big spenders on the day, signing David Clarkson to a seven-year deal while also locking up their restricted free agents Tyler Bozak and Jonathan Bernier.
Nathan Horton made the biggest splash when he inked a seven-year, $37.1 million deal with Columbus, but the Boston Bruins finally got their man when Jarome Iginla committed to a one-year, $6 million contract.
By the time the day was done, plenty of other names, including Jaromir Jagr, still remained on the sidelines. Lots more wheeling and dealing is sure to unfold in the weeks to come.
For an up-to-date list of all the free agent activity for 2013, click here to visit TSN's Free Agent Tracker.
As the clock strikes 10 p.m. on the east coast, it looks like the action is winding down for the day.
This is Carol Schram, sigining off from Free Agent Friday. Keep your eyes open for plenty more movement within the NHL in the days and weeks to come.
The Leafs get Jonathan Bernier signed, bringing the total spend for the day to just over $400 million in a "lean" free agent year. Will they ever learn?
TOR signs Jonathan Bernier to two year deal worth a total of $5.8M. CHI signs Nik Khabibulin to one year deal.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 6, 2013
The biggest deal of the day went to a man who might not be able to play hockey for the rest of the year.
Nathan Horton has not yet had surgery on the shoulder he injured in the playoffs, and is planning to make a decision on his procedure with the Blue Jackets' medical staff.
At this point, it's expected he'll be ready to play by December. This really is a long-term vision...
Free agency will always be about paying more than market value.
Sportsnet tells us that today's average salaries handed out are just slightly more than the NHL average from before the lockout. So much for that salary drag...
The average yearly salary of the contracts given on Friday is just over $2.58M. The average NHL player in 2011-12 made $2.45M— Sportsnet Ticker (@SportsnetTicker) July 6, 2013
In a minor move lost in the frenzy of the Iginla news, the St. Louis Blues have signed center Alexandre Bolduc to a one-year day, from the Phoenix Coyotes organization.
While some would question Nathan Horton's decision to abandon his spot on one of the best lines in hockey, word from TSN today was that Horton's decision to sign with Columbus was primarily about lifestyle.
He wasn't a fan of the big-city life in Boston and was looking for more of a laid-back, midwest feel for his next destination. In that respect, Columbus could be a good fit.
Boston's backup Khudobin was signed by Carolina earlier today. I guess Tim Thomas isn't coming back?
Bruins announce signing of veteran G Chad Johnson ($600K).— Fluto Shinzawa (@GlobeFluto) July 6, 2013
Last year's free-agent deals were worth just over $200 million.
59 deals, just under $395m— Kevin Gibson (@TSNResearch) July 6, 2013
Though there has been lots of action today, rest assured that next year's NHL rosters are far from set.
With the drop in the salary cap, a number of teams are hanging near or above the cap ceiling. They'll need to make more moves to be compliant by opening day, and that could mean purging some players.
Teams that have stayed patient today and have cap space to spare may end up with the chance to pick up some players who are already under contract in exchange for picks and prospects as summer winds down.
TSN is reporting 59 deals today, dramatically eclipsing the action last summer, before the lockout.
Carol Schram here, keeping you up to date on the back half of free-agency day in the NHL.
We're now into hour nine and have seen two Pittsburgh Penguins change addresses in the past hour.
Michael Russo is suggesting that swapping out Setoguchi for Cooke is not going over especially well in Minnesota so far:
Just scanned at Twitter and #mnwild fans ain't happy. Wowza— Michael Russo (@Russostrib) July 5, 2013
Pierre LeBrun has the numbers for Iginla's deal:
Iggy deal: $1.8 M base salary, $3.7 M games played bonus, $500,000 goal scoring/team playoff performance: total $6 M— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) July 5, 2013
I guess you have to admire Peter Chiarelli's commitment to operation Iginla. If at first you don't succeed...
There's no doubt that Boston needed a skilled top-six forward to slot into Nathan Horton's right-wing spot. Iginla may be eight years older than Horton, but he's been less injury-prone throughout his career, and is a proven leader.
Voices from the outside think Boston overpaid.
@tpanotchCSN That 1-year deal for Iggy to Boston screams OVERPAID— Mike Matthews (@MikeMatthews9) July 5, 2013
I guess not everybody hates Matt Cooke. He's $7.5 million richer.
Matt Cooke signs for $7.5 M over 3 years in Minny— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) July 5, 2013
Bob McKenzie says Boston's commitment to Iginla is one year, up to $6 million.
If Bob McKenzie says it is so, maybe it's true this time?
Jarome Iginla is a Boston Bruin.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 5, 2013
Minnesota has traded Devin Setoguchi. Freeing up space to sign another player?
The Winnipeg Jets have acquired Devin Setoguchi from the Minnesota Wild in exchange for a 2nd round pick in 2014.— SN 590 The FAN (@FAN590) July 5, 2013
I wonder if Mikhail Grabovski's outburst after the announcement of his compliance buyout is making GMs think twice about offering him a deal.
He did have three 20-goal seasons with the Leafs, but is he a problem in the locker room?
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