Today was a busy day in the NHL. The day before teams are able to make offers on free agents. Moves were made, players were bought out, and all before the fireworks even started.
The Dallas Stars acquired Tyler Seguin, Rich Peverley, and Ryan Button in a trade with the Boston Bruins. The Bruins got Loui Eriksson, Joe Morrow, Reilly Smith, and Matt Fraser in return. This is a good trade both ways, the Stars lost out on getting Vincent Lecavalier who signed with Philly, so they went out and got two centers in a deal that benefits the team well. Seguin has potential, maybe Dallas is exactly what he needs to get to his ceiling. Peverley will bring depth at the center position and Ryan Button, a defenseman who has no NHL experience at age 22.
The Bruins ended up with Loui Eriksson who had scored 26+ goals three seasons in a row before this shortened season. Eriksson is a scorer that could be very dangerous in Boston. Joe Morrow was sent from Pittsburgh to Dallas in the trade for Brenden Morrow, and now from Dallas to Boston. He’s a young defenseman with tons of upside. Reilly Smith just finished his rookie season after being a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award the year before, and played well in his year in Dallas. The numbers weren’t there, but Smith has the potential to be a really good player in a short time. Matt Fraser has played well at the AHL level, but hasn’t broke out yet in the NHL, scoring only one goal in the first of eleven games.
Meanwhile in Toronto, Mikhail Grabovski was bought out by the Toronto Maple Leafs. Grabovski had a cap hit of $5.5 million, and was owed $6 million the next two seasons before his salary went down for the next two seasons. Grabovski never fit the system Randy Carlyle brought to Toronto and it seems he’s just a victim of bad placement. Grabovski was not very happy after hearing the news today and made it clear that he was not a fan of Coach Carlyle. Grabovski will be a good edition to many teams, and I expect him to be somewhere rather quickly.
Danny Briere signed a 2 year deal with the Montreal Canadiens. The deal is worth $4 million a season. Briere decided to go home to play and turned down bigger numbers from Nashville and New Jersey. It’s not always about the money, and that is respectable. Briere’s numbers have dipped the last two seasons, and he’s 35 years old now. I do believe he can play at a 60 point level at least until this contract is finished.
Dallas made more moves solidifying the center position by adding veteran center, and former captain of the Edmonton Oilers, Shawn Horcoff. Horcoff will be 35 in September, but should still give Dallas added depth and be able to play third line minutes. The Oilers received defenseman Philip Larsen and a 7th round pick in 2016. Larsen struggled this season, but he brings depth to the Oilers blue line. It’s a bold move for Dallas, but they aren’t giving up much. Horcoff has a cap hit of $5.5 million, and is owed $4 million this season, and $3 million the following season.
Daniel Alfredsson has narrowed down his list of teams now to the Ottawa Senators, Detroit Red Wings, and Boston Bruins. Alfredsson is 40, but is still capable of putting up points and playing good minutes. You have to think that he would like to stay in Ottawa, but when two contenders like Boston and Detroit come knocking on your door, it might make you think for a second. I would be surprised to see him leave the Senators, but if he wants to win, and sees a better chance of doing so with Boston or Detroit, it may happen.
Claude Giroux and the Flyers agreed on an eight year extension worth over $64 million. Giroux is a dangerous offensive player, and will leading the Philadelphia Flyers for an extra eight seasons. This season would have been the last of his current contract.
Keith Ballard, who was bought out by the Vancouver Canucks earlier this week, signed a two year deal worth $3 million with the Minnesota Wild today. The Wild help their defense out with the signing, and just hope he can stay healthy.
The New Jersey Devils finally re-signed Patrik Elias as well. The contract is for three seasons and is worth $16.5 million. Elias is the franchise leader in regular season and playoff goals, assists, and points. He has spent his entire 17 season career in New Jersey, and it looks like he’ll finish it there.
The Ottawa Senators extended Jack Adams Award winning coach, Paul MacLean for another three years as well today. MacLean coached a banged up Senators team all season and even got into the second round of the playoffs.
Tomorrow will be another busy day in the NHL as free agency starts. Teams will finally be able to make offers to players. It’s like Christmas morning.
Topics: Boston Bruins, Brenden Morrow, Claude Giroux, Dallas Stars, Daniel Alfredsson, DAnny Briere, Detroit Red Wings, Edmonton Oilers, Free Agency, Joe Morrow, Keith Ballard, Louis Eriksson, Matt Fraser, Mikhail Grobovski, Minnesota Wild, Montreal Canadiens, New Jersey Devils, Ottawa Senators, Patrik Elias, Paul MacLean, Philadeplhia Flyers, Philip Larsen, Pittsburgh Penguins, Randy Carlyle, Reilly Smith, Rich Peverley, Ryan Button, Shawn Horcoff, Toronto Maple Leafs, Trades, Tyler Seguin, Vincent Lecavalier