Cam Tucker

SAN JOSE, CA - JUNE 12: Justin Schultz #4 of the Pittsburgh Penguins celebrates with the Stanley Cup after their 3-1 victory to win the Stanley Cup against the San Jose Sharks in Game Six of the 2016 NHL Stanley Cup Final at SAP Center on June 12, 2016 in San Jose, California.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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Justin Schultz headlines list of RFAs not extended qualifying offers

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After hoisting the Stanley Cup with the Pittsburgh Penguins earlier this month, Justin Schultz could soon be joining another NHL team.

The Penguins didn’t extend Schultz a qualifying offer Monday, which means he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

Already facing a cap crunch, Pittsburgh, had it opted to give Schultz a qualifying offer, would have to match his entire $3.9 million salary from his one-year contract in 2015-16.

The Penguins acquired Schultz from Edmonton just prior to the trade deadline, with GM Jim Rutherford praising his offensive upside, while admitting Schultz needed work in the defensive end.

Schultz played in 15 playoff games for Pittsburgh, adding an assist in the Cup-clinching win. However, it was shortly after winning the championship that it appeared his price tag would be too much for the Penguins.

Related: The Penguins are playing Schultz to his strengths

More notables:

Joe Colborne

The Calgary Flames did not offer the 26-year-old Joe Colborne a qualifying offer, making him an unrestricted free agent. He hit career highs in goals (19) and points (44) — also with a career-high shooting percentage of 19 per cent.

He wrapped up a two-year deal, worth $1.275 million.

The Flames also didn’t qualify center Josh Jooris and goalie Joni Ortio.

Ortio split the 2015-16 season between the Flames and their AHL affiliate, the Stockton Heat. With Calgary, he had a 7-9-5 record with a .902 save percentage, and was waived to go down to the minors, where he also struggled.

In a bid to bolster their goaltending situation, the Flames acquired Brian Elliott from the St. Louis Blues at the draft.

Brett Connolly

Once the sixth overall pick in the 2010 NHL Draft, Brett Connolly didn’t receive a qualifying offer from the Boston Bruins, after scoring nine goals and a single-season career high 25 points in 71 games with this season.

He was playing on a one-year, $1.025 million contract.


He struggled to produce offense even though he spent long stretches playing with Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand last season. Still, he was the sixth overall pick in the 2010 draft and the Bruins gave up two second-round picks to Tampa Bay for him less than two years ago, so the move is somewhat unexpected.

Landon Ferraro

Another interesting decision from the Bruins, who claimed Landon Ferraro off waivers from the Detroit Red Wings in November. The 24-year-old forward, on a one-year deal worth $600,000 for 2015-16, had five goals and 10 points — all with the Bruins as a member of their bottom-six group of forwards — this past season.

After getting claimed by Boston but before he played a game for that franchise, Bruins coach Claude Julien described Ferraro as a “reliable” player.

Linden Vey

Jim Benning, at his first draft as the Canucks general manager, used a second-round pick to acquire Linden Vey from the L.A. Kings, but the Canucks did not qualify him Monday.

That doesn’t come as much of a surprise, with Vey reportedly expecting the Canucks not to make him a qualifying offer.

The 24-year-old Vey scored four goals and 15 points in 41 games this past season, after he was recalled from AHL Utica.

Prior to the beginning of this past season, Vey was put on waivers and eventually sent down to the minors, before getting recalled. In his first season with the Canucks, he entered training camp and was immediately given first-unit power play duties. He ended up scoring 10 goals and 24 points that season.

Off the ice, however, Vey has been troubled by family turmoil. Last month, it was reported in The Province newspaper that Vey’s father, Curtis, was set to go to trail on charges of conspiracy to murder his wife.

Brandon Pirri

The Ducks acquired Brandon Pirri from the Florida Panthers at the trade deadline. A year removed from a 22-goal season in Florida, Pirri then had three goals and five points in nine games with the Ducks.

From the Orange County Register:

Pirri is arbitration eligible and with 14 combined goals with the Ducks and Panthers last season, he could get a bump up from his $975,000 salary and the Ducks appear to want that slot open for a cheaper, more multi-dimensional forward.

— Brandon Gormley

According to the Denver Post, the Colorado Avalanche didn’t tender a qualifying offer to 24-year-old defenseman Brandon Gormley, once a 13th overall pick of the Phoenix Coyotes in 2010.

He has been unable to turn that into an established position at the NHL level.

He struggled in Colorado, eventually getting put on waivers. He split time between the Avalanche and San Antonio Rampage in the minors.

According to the aforementioned report, the Avalanche also plan to buy out the contract of 36-year-old defenseman Brad Stuart.

Shaw signs six-year extension with Habs

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 23:  Andrew Shaw #65 of the Chicago Blackhawks celebrates his third period goal against the St. Louis Blues in Game Six of the Western Conference First Round during the 2016 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the United Center on April 23, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois. The Blackhawks defeated the Blues 6-3.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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Andrew Shaw has agreed to terms on a six-year contract extension with the Montreal Canadiens, the team announced Monday.

The Habs acquired Shaw from the Chicago Blackhawks at the draft for a pair of second-round picks.

“As I mentioned last Friday following his acquisition, we are adding a solid character player to our team, a reliable player who plays with grit and a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Chicago Blackhawks over the past five seasons,” said Habs GM Marc Bergevin in a statement.

The reported average annual value of the deal — which represents a substantial raise from the two-year, $4 million contract he just wrapped up in Chicago, where he had 34 points in 78 games this season — is interesting to note, because it was reported Shaw was seeking about $4.5 million annually.

That was prior to the draft.

Combined with the salary cap moving to only $73 million, Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman knew moving Shaw was inevitable.

Related: Shaw laments leaving ‘second home’ in Chicago, but excited for Montreal 

Eller is pumped to play for Cup-contending Capitals

FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 31:  Lars Eller #81 of the Montreal Canadiens skates during practice at Gillette Stadium on December 31, 2015 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
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ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) When Lars Eller was playing for the Montreal Canadiens, he was a man without a position whose name was constantly bandied about in trade talks.

He wasn’t comfortable.

Following a trade to the Washington Capitals, Eller knows he’ll start next season as the third-line center behind All-Stars Nicklas Backstrom and Evgeni Kuznetsov. And he’s joining a team that has been trying to acquire him for more than a year, so he feels wanted.

“When a team shows that much interest in you and has a specific need and finds a player that they think can fill that need, then I think that’s the best thing for me and I think it’s good for Washington,” Eller said on a conference call Monday. “They see me fitting in in a certain spot, in a certain place, in a certain role that’s going to be defined, and I think that stability is going to do me well.”


Trade: Habs get Shaw from ‘Hawks, send Eller to Caps

Capitals don’t extend qualifying offer to Latta, acquired in 2013 Filip Forsberg trade

Eller had some stability in Montreal because he was there six seasons after a 2010 trade from the St. Louis Blues. But he kept getting moved from the wing to center and back, especially in recent seasons under coach Michel Therrien, and his production suffered.

It also didn’t help, Canadiens general manager said, that Eller often put too much pressure on himself. Eller agreed with that and figured it showed in his play.

“I am a player that has put a lot of pressure on myself,” the 27-year-old said. “I was too hard on myself at times. Just I want to do as good as possible. Sometimes maybe it was too much and there was times where I didn’t have much fun playing and it hurt my game at times.”

Eller had only 13 goals and 13 assists last season and was frustrating because of his tendency to come up big at times and disappear at others. The Capitals are aware of that, but GM Brian MacLellan said Eller fits exactly what he was looking for.

“He’s got good size, he skates well, he’s got good skill level, he plays a good two-way game,” MacLellan told reporters in Buffalo, New York, at the draft Friday. “We’ve been looking to fill that spot for a little while now.”

After losing in six games to the eventual Stanley Cup-champion Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round, MacLellan said his goal was to improve his depth at forward. Adding Eller, who has two years left on his contract at a salary-cap hit of $3.5 million, was the first step toward doing that.

Eller was part of the 2014 Montreal team that made the Eastern Conference final, and he’ll be counted on to help the Capitals get there and beyond.

“I’m going to go play for a Stanley Cup contender,” Eller said. “It’s fun playing on a winning team where they have a winning culture and they have a chance to play for a Cup. I’m honestly really excited about that.”

Predators hire Redden as asst. director of player development

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After 1,023 regular season games in the National Hockey League and retiring as a player in January, 2014, Wade Redden has been hired by the Nashville Predators as an assistant director of player development.

From the Predators:

In his role, Redden will assist Director of Player Development Scott Nichol in following and evaluating prospects drafted by Nashville, assisting them with their maturation process into NHL players by focusing on nutrition, off-ice workouts and conditioning, practice habits and game performance.

At the height of his career, the seasons immediately before and after the second lockout, Redden was Ottawa’s most productive defenseman, hitting the 50-point plateau in 2005-06.

The season before the second lockout, he had a single-season career best 17 goals.

In addition to playing for the Senators, the team he began his NHL career with in 1996, Redden played for the New York Rangers (and two seasons with their AHL affiliate in Connecticut when the Rangers sent him down), St. Louis Blues and Boston Bruins.

Related: Redden’s unusual journey to 1,000 games

Capitals don’t extend qualifying offer to Latta, who was acquired in 2013 Filip Forsberg trade

PHILADELPHIA, PA - NOVEMBER 01:  Michael Latta #46 of the Washington Capitals skates against the Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center on November 1, 2013 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Capitals defeated the Flyers 7-0.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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Michael Latta is now an unrestricted free agent.

According to reports, the Capitals didn’t extend the 25-year-old Latta a qualifying offer on Monday, so he now heads to free agency after three seasons in Washington. He scored three goals and seven points in 43 games this past season.

From the Washington Post:

The decision to let Latta walk is a bit of a surprise after General Manager Brian MacLellan said twice last week that he intended to extend qualifying offers to all four. But the trade for Lars Eller, who projects to be the Capitals’ third-line center, leaves Latta again without a role, as Jay Beagle is expected to be the Capitals’ fourth center.

Meanwhile, in Nashville. . .

. . . The Predators on Monday signed 21-year-old forward Filip Forsberg to a six-year, $36 million extension, following a 33-goal, 64-point regular season.

The significance?

The Capitals traded Forsberg — their first-round pick, 11th overall, in the 2012 NHL Draft — to Nashville in April of 2013 for Martin Erat and Latta, who was playing in the AHL at the time.

Erat played 62 games in parts of two seasons for Washington, before moving to Phoenix with the Coyotes and eventually signing in the KHL last September.

Now Latta is an UFA.