The 2010 NHL free agency period is set to start at noon tomorrow and for a lot of teams, it’s a means to start fresh and forget about the previous season. For other teams, it offers the chance to correct problem areas that burned them in the playoffs and cost them a shot at the Stanley Cup. For teams like the Florida Panthers and new general manager Dale Tallon, it sometimes means having to play things close to the vest no matter how much salary cap space you’ve got to use as On Frozen Pond’s George Richards finds out.
“I don’t know how aggressive we’re going to be, but we’re going to try to get better and find players who make sense for us at this time,” said general manager Dale Tallon, whose team has 17 NHL regulars under contract for next season.
“I don’t think we’re going after the top guys, but good guys that can help us and not affect our future.”
The Panthers were about $7 million under the salary cap last season and are currently about $12 million under this year’s cap of $59.4 million. Florida still needs to sign a couple of its restricted free agents, but are said to have a budget under what was spent last season.