As first reported by Sportsnet, the New York Rangers have been given permission to speak to Mats Sundin and his agent, and apparently were granted the permission before the Montreal Canadiens were.
Sources say it was early last week that Rangers General Manager, Glen Sather, asked Leafs GM, Cliff Fletcher, for permission, a few days before Bob Gainey got into the act.
On a side note, all this talk about teams giving others permission to speak to their impending UFA's has sparked some debate as to whether there should be some sort of negotiating period.
Not to say there is tampering, but I think people are naive to think that teams just sign players five minutes after noon on July 1st.
I am sure there is some sort of unofficial negotiating going on before then, and teams, and players have an idea of each other’s needs.
Wellwood To Be Let Loose
Friday night during a pre draft segment, Nick Kypreos said he has heard sources say the Toronto Maple Leafs are considering now qualifying forward Kyle Wellwood, making him an unrestricted free agent.
Wellwood had an injury last season, and has been slowed by injuries in the past, but he has shown flashes of being a skilled, creative center.
In my opinion, I don't think this is the right move.
In order to qualify a player, a team must offer the player a deal worth 10% more of their previous contract.
The Maple Leafs could still have Kyle Wellwood for a pretty cheap price tag.
The question then becomes if there is room for him at the center spot?
Either way, with a cheap contract, I would like to see the Maple Leafs bring Wellwood back on a make or break deal, if things don't go good at any time of the year, cut him loose, once and for all.
I do think Kyle Wellwood still has lots of hockey left in him.
Get To Know Luke Schenn
No pressure on the kid, eh?
I personally am getting antsy at going to a game this year and yelling "Luuuuuuuuke."
For those who are looking for some more info on Luke, Mapleleafs.com have a great section up for their newest draft choice.
It can be found here.