Jason Brough


Buyouts! Buyouts! Buyouts!


A number of NHL players are on waivers today for the purposes of being bought out.

Let’s start with New Jersey winger Mike Cammalleri, who has two years left on his deal with a cap hit of $5 million. Buying him out will mean a cap hit of $1.67 million over the next four years. The 35-year-old had just 10 goals in 61 games last season, and the Devils are expected to be active tomorrow in free agency.

New Jersey will also buy out the final year of winger Devante Smith-Pelly’s contract.

Moving on to the Calgary Flames, who will buy out forward Lance Bouma and defenseman Ryan Murphy, the latter of whom was just acquired in a trade with Carolina. Bouma and Murphy each have just one year left on their contracts.

The others:

— The Bruins will buy out winger Jimmy Hayes, who has one year left on his contract.

— The Panthers will buy out forward Jussi Jokinen, who has one year left on his contract.

— The Jets will buy out defenseman Mark Stuart, who has one year left on his contract.

To see the cap hits for each buyout, CapFriendly’s Twitter account has it all.

Wild, Sabres pull off multi-player trade


The Buffalo Sabres and Minnesota Wild have pulled off a multi-player swap. Defenseman Marco Scandella and forward Jason Pominville are headed to Buffalo, in return for forwards Tyler Ennis and Marcus Foligno, plus a fourth-round draft pick in 2018.

The trade was first reported by TSN’s Bob McKenzie.

Scandella, 27, has three years left on his contract with a cap hit of $4 million. He had four goals and nine assists in 71 games last season, averaging 18:20 of ice time. Compared to previous campaigns, it was not a great season for him.

But the Sabres badly need to upgrade their defense, and they also get Pominville, the 34-year-old winger who spent his prime years in Buffalo. Pominville has two years left on his deal with a cap hit of $5.6 million. He had 13 goals in 78 games last season.

As for the players headed to Minnesota, Foligno is a 25-year-old winger coming off a 13-goal season of his own. He’s also a restricted free agent.

Ennis, a first-round draft pick in 2008, is the bigger name. But the 27-year-old has had all sorts of trouble staying healthy. Last season, he had just five goals in 51 games. He’s signed for two more years at a cap hit of $4.6 million.

No salary was retained in the trade.

Expect a busy July 1 in goalie news

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Some teams, like the Calgary Flames, have already addressed their goaltending vacancies.

But many others haven’t, so expect tomorrow (July 1) to be a busy day in that regard.

The Philadelphia Flyers are one team to watch. They reportedly won’t be bringing Steve Mason back, leaving some to predict the signing of Brian Elliott.

Elliott, of course, was the guy the Flames hoped could solve their problems in net. Alas, it didn’t work out, and GM Brad Treliving acquired Mike Smith and Eddie Lack instead.

The Winnipeg Jets are another team to watch. Last season, the Jets waived Ondrej Pavelec and went with a tandem of Connor Hellebuyck and Michael Hutchinson. Which didn’t go all that well. Pavelec’s contract is now done, but expect GM Kevin Cheveldayoff to try and land a veteran netminder to pair with Hellebuyck. The Jets have been linked to Mason, but also Elliott.

A number of other teams need backups. The Anaheim Ducks need one for John Gibson — quite likely Ryan Miller. Which brings us to the Vancouver Canucks, who’d then need a backup for Jacob Markstrom. The Canucks have been linked to Anders Nilsson.

Let’s move on to the defending champs, who don’t have have an obvious backup for Matt Murray after Marc-Andre Fleury was lost to Vegas. The Penguins would like to keep Tristan Jarry in the AHL a little while longer, which explains the speculation surrounding Antti Niemi.

The Colorado Avalanche: They lost Calvin Pickard to Vegas, opening a spot behind Semyon Varlamov. Perhaps Jonathan Bernier could fill that role?

The Buffalo Sabres: There’s been talk Chad Johnson could be on his way back. Would make sense if they don’t re-sign Nilsson.

The Boston Bruins: They’ve still got Anton Khudobin under contract for another year, but GM Don Sweeney may look for an upgrade behind Tuukka Rask.

The Toronto Maple Leafs: They could always re-sign Curtis McElhinney to back up Frederik Andersen, but GM Lou Lamoriello may try to do better.

Versteeg agrees to contract extension with Flames


Kris Versteeg is getting his wish to stick around in Calgary.

According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, Versteeg and the Flames are “putting the finishing touches” on a one-year extension worth $1.75 million.

Update: The Flames confirmed that Versteeg will be back.

Versteeg, 31, had 15 goals and 22 assists in 69 games last season. He said in March that he wanted to stay put.

“Me and my agent have talked a lot about different scenarios and situations,” Versteeg said. “Being in Calgary is obviously No. 1 for me. I have my family, I have my friends. I feel like I’ve made a lot of good friends on the team and in the organization. Here is where my heart is, especially right now.”

Versteeg was born in Lethbridge, Alberta — just a two-hour drive from Calgary.

The Flames are his seventh NHL team.

So long, Scotty — Blue Jackets buy out Hartnell


The Columbus Blue Jackets have bought out Scott Hartnell.

The 35-year-old winger now becomes an unrestricted free agent. He had two years left on his contract.

For the Jackets, the buyout will cost them a $1.5 million cap hit this coming season, a $3 million hit the following season, and consecutive $1.25 million hits in the two seasons after that.

“On behalf of our organization, I want to thank Scott for his contributions to the Blue Jackets over the past three seasons and wish him well in the future,” said GM Jarko Kekalainen in a release. “Moves like this are never easy, but with our current organizational depth at the position it is something we believe is in the best interest of our club moving forward.”

Hartnell had just 13 goals in 78 games this past season. It was a frustrating campaign for multiple reasons, including ongoing trade rumors and an average ice time that fell to a mere 12:04.

Not surprisingly, there was tension between the veteran winger and head coach John Tortorella.

“I’m sure he gets frustrated with me sometimes, but this is the evolution of a team,” Tortorella said in March, per the Columbus Dispatch. “I don’t coach one guy. I have to coach them all. He’s been outstanding as far as how he’s handled it.”

Hartnell was traded to Columbus from Philadelphia in June of 2014. He has 314 career goals in 1,187 regular-season games in the NHL.