NHL Free Agency 2012: Ryan Smyth and Players Likely to Stay with Current Teams

Stephen Sheehan@@StephenPSheehanCorrespondent IJuly 3, 2012

NHL Free Agency 2012: Ryan Smyth and Players Likely to Stay with Current Teams

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    With the free agency period beginning just two days ago, teams have already shelled out millions for some respected veterans around the league.

    Longtime New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur signed a two-year, $9 million deal to likely finish out his career with the Devils. 

    Elsewhere, the Edmonton Oilers inked left-winger Ryan Smyth to a two-year, $4.5 million contract, also allowing Smyth to go out with the team he has spent 12 years with.

    Just three days into free agency, let’s take a look at some other free agents who will likely re-sign with their current teams. 

Zach Parise, LW

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    The best player on the market just happens to be Martin Brodeur's teammate and one of the better offensive players in the league in Zach Parise. 

    The seven-year veteran rebounded with 31 goals and 38 assists after an injury-plagued 2010-2011 season in which he only scored three goals in 13 games. 

    His exceptional offensive skills are coveted by teams around the league, and according to Stephen Harris of The Boston Herald, Parise has has received offers that would pay the superstar more than $12 million per year. 

    While Parise hasn't made a decision on where he'll play next season, the Devils can't afford to let their best weapon leave. 

    Ultimately, New Jersey should re-sign the 27-year-old to a long-term deal. 

Jakub Voracek, RW

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    After acquiring Jakub Voracek from the Columbus Blue Jackets in a pre-draft trade last season, the Philadelphia Flyers have to be impressed with what they got out of the right winger. 

    The former seventh overall pick in 2007 posted his best plus-minus rating since his rookie season with a plus-11. 

    While chipping in a career-high 18 goals, Voracek also dished out 31 assists in 78 games. 

    He's by no means a superstar, but he looks like a guy the Flyers could count on for the future. 

Jaromir Jagr, RW

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    Jaromir Jagr has put together an amazing 18-year career since he was drafting fifth overall in 1990. 

    At one point, he was one of the best pure scorers in the game, topping the 40-goal mark six times. 

    As recently as 2005-2006, the right winger scored 54 goals, but at 40 years old, Jagr's best days are clearly a distant memory. 

    After a three-year hiatus, the 11th-best scorer in league history returned to the NHL and showed he's still capable of finding the back of the net. 

    With 18 goals and 35 assists, Jagr proved to be a solid piece for the Philadelphia Flyers. 

    Although he's no longer a superstar, his ability to score and provide leadership is an asset in Philly. 

Matt Carle, D

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    Along with Chris Pronger, seven-year veteran Matt Carle comprises a solid defensive duo for the Philadelphia Flyers. 

    However, the former second-round pick isn't guaranteed to stay in a Flyers uniform after his price tag got a little higher with the Dennis Wideman signing

    Carle is a steady veteran who may not carry a big name, but is a valuable asset for the Flyers. 

    Assuming the team and player can meet at a reasonable price, look for Carle to be back in Philly. 

Erik Johnson, D

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    According to Josh Rimer of NHL Home Ice, the Colorado Avalanche will be re-signing restricted free agent Erik Johnson to a four- or five-year extension. 

    After becoming the top pick of the 2006 draft by the St. Louis Blues, Johnson hasn't developed into a stud, but he hasn't been a bust. 

    He's coming off a down year, but apparently the Avalanche are banking on Johnson to play closer to the beginning portion of his career rather than the latter. 


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