Last week Gary Bettman and the NHL owners put forth a new proposal with the hopes of striking a deal and playing an 82 game season starting on November 2nd. The NHLPA responded with three separate proposals, to which Gary Bettman classified as a step back in the process. Although there is little optimism, in reality the two sides are not very far apart and they should be able to hammer out a deal.
The lockout has affected many people including the long list of unrestricted free agents (UFA) that remain unsigned. With the uncertainty surrounding the new CBA, many good players have been left sitting on the sidelines wondering where they are going to play this season. If a new deal is reached there will be a very short training camp and preseason before the season starts, which should make for an interesting few days as NHL teams fill out their rosters.
Here is a list of UFA’s that are still available and where they might end up:
Eric Fehr – The former first round pick was not extended a qualifying offer by the Winnipeg Jets this summer after coming off a season hampered by injuries. At only 27 years old and two years removed from a 21 goal season, Fehr should get some interest as a buy low candidate.
Potential Landing Spot – Phoenix, Vancouver, New Jersey, Columbus
Chris Campoli – It wasn’t long ago that Campoli was seen as a good up and coming defenseman. At 28 years old he has essentially turned into a bottom pairing guy that can also play minutes on the power play. At a cheap price, he should add depth to an NHL blue line.
Potential Landing Spot – Detroit, Minnesota
Dominic Moore – Although Moore did not have a great season last year, he is a dependable third or fourth line center that is sure to find a spot on an NHL roster when the season starts up.
Potential Landing Spot – Ottawa, Colorado, Columbus, New Jersey
Kristian Huselius – Huselius only played two games last season for the Columbus Blue Jackets due to injury and has his sights set on playing pro hockey this year. He is an interesting case because he is a potential second line winger that can score 20+ goals if he is healthy. However, I am not sure if anyone takes a chance on him.
Potential Landing Spot – Calgary, Montreal, Nashville, New Jersey
Daymond Langkow – Langkow battled back from a serious injury that saw him only play four games in 2010-11 to be an effective player for the Phoenix Coyotes last season. He is no longer a top six scoring center, but he proved last season that he can be an effective checker while still producing some offense. At 36 years old he is near the end of the road, but would be a nice piece for a contending team.
Potential Landing Spot – Phoenix, Carolina, Ottawa
Jason Arnott – Arnott is another veteran that can be a nice piece for a contending team. Arnott performed well last season in a third line role with St. Louis contributing 17 goals.
Potential Landing Spot – Vancouver, Buffalo, Carolina, Ottawa
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