Rather than make a big free agent plunge this summer, the Detroit Red Wings settled for re-signing players like Kyle Quincey and Jonas Gustavsson. That might not be the most exciting way of doing things, but GM Ken Holland told the Detroit News that it all comes back to his philosophy about building through the draft.
“We need to draft. We need to develop. We need to have patience,” Holland said.
Holland admitted that the Red Wings aren’t currently viewed as a top contender, which is part of the reason why they didn’t land one of the “small clusters of those individuals available” in free agency.
In the short term, Holland repeatedly pointed to the possibility that the Red Wings might enjoy better luck with injuries. Even so, development was a big part of his pitch to the Detroit News, which makes more sense when you consider this outlook:
“Three years from now, there will be a brand new rink,” Holland said. “Our ownership has always been committed to doing to the cap. I have the green light from our ownership to spend to the cap.
“I think it’s a great time for the league. I think it’s a great time for the Detroit Red Wings.”
It almost sounds like he’s saying that the times will only get better as the years go on, yet a healthier Red Wings team could very well be dangerous in 2014-15.
In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.
The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.
At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.
As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.
The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.
All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.
The Los Angeles Kings announced today that they have “reached an agreement with Mike Richards to resolve the grievance filed in relation to the termination of his NHL Standard Players Contract. The terms are agreeable to all parties.”
The club said that it will not be commenting further “on the terms” of the settlement.
The NHLPA released a similar statement.
It was reported earlier in the week that a settlement was close to being reached; however, it wasn’t clear what salary-cap penalties the Kings would incur.
We’re starting to find out some details now:
How the final numbers differ from what the Kings would have incurred if they’d bought Richards out will be interesting to see. And if there are differences, how will they be justified?