Training camps open around NHL after another short offseason

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
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Training camps open around the NHL after another short offseason, a third in a row squeezed by the pandemic. That doesn’t bother Colorado Avalanche star Nathan MacKinnon one bit.

For one of hockey’s best players and his teammates, it’s already time to get back on the ice and defend their Stanley Cup title, less than three months since they knocked off the back-to-back champion Tampa Bay Lightning.

“I still feel like I just was playing,” MacKinnon said. “I took two weeks off, and then I started skating again. It’s just fun. I enjoy it, and I like the short summer. It feels like the season’s just kind of rolling over again.”

The NHL rolls into fall coming off an entertaining playoffs and final with the chance to finally get back on a normal schedule. That means full camps for teams that got new coaches and the benefits of a regular routine.

That means a mere 88 days between Game 6 of the final and the first-on ice practice sessions.

“We’re kind of used to it now,” Tampa Bay goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy said after he and the Lightning lost in the final for the first time in three consecutive trips. “It’s a little harder, of course, because you don’t have that much time to rest. It’s basically a few weeks and you have to get back at it. But, yeah, I can’t complain. You want your summers to be short every year.”

It was a little longer for Connor McDavid and the Oilers after losing to Colorado in the West final. Despite the lack of downtime, McDavid “wouldn’t trade that in for anything” and aims to make it even further since Edmonton shored up its goaltending situation by adding Jack Campbell.

A few spins of the goalie carousel ended with the Avalanche acquiring Alexandar Georgiev from the New York Rangers and Cup winner Darcy Kuemper landing with Washington. Joining new teammates, many of whom hoisted the Cup in 2018, Kuemper is not worried about less time off.

“It was definitely a very unique summer,” Kuemper said. “With how short it was, you start getting back into the gym and you’re kind of a little bit worried that your training’s going to be so short. But you kind of felt like you weren’t getting back into shape. You were already there.”

NEW COACHES

The Oilers are one of several teams settling in for training camp under a new coach. Jay Woodcroft took over as interim coach in February but has the full-time job now.

“Looking forward to a camp with him,” McDavid said. “He did a great job coming in during the middle of the season, but it’s never easy on a coach, for sure. I’m sure there’s things that he wanted to touch on that you wasn’t able to kind of in the middle of the year, so he’ll be able to to touch on all of it this year.”

The same goes for Bruce Boudreau in Vancouver, 11 months since being put in charge of the Canucks. Philadelphia’s John Tortorella, Boston’s Jim Montgomery, Vegas’ Bruce Cassidy, Dallas’ Peter DeBoer, Florida’s Paul Maurice, Chicago’s Luke Richardson, Detroit’s Derek Lalonde and the New York Islanders’ Lane Lambert are all starting the job fresh.

CAMP TRYOUTS

Roughly 40 players are attending a camp on a professional tryout agreement with the chance to earn a contract for the season. James Neal has that opportunity with the Blue Jackets, and Derek Stepan returned to Carolina to seek a job with the Hurricanes.

The most intriguing situation involves 37-year-old center Eric Staal, who agreed to the tryout with Florida the same time brother Marc signed a one-year contract. Younger brother Jordan was with Eric and Marc on the 18th green at Pebble Beach to witness the occasion.

“They’re both just super pumped, as was I,” said Jordan Staal, who is the captain of the Hurricanes. “Eric is excited about the opportunity and Marc, as well. Really cool. Really cool thing.”

EARLY START

Before the puck drops on the NHL season in North America on Oct. 11, the Nashville Predators and San Jose Sharks play twice in Prague on Oct. 7 and 8. And those are not exhibitions.

“We still play two important games,” said Sharks forward Tomas Hertl, who is a native of Prague. “It’s not just preseason where you coming here to warm up.”

Colorado and Columbus will also play two games in Tampere, Finland, on Nov. 4-5 as part of the NHL’s Global Series.

And just as the league gets used to a regular schedule, work is ongoing between the league and NHL Players’ Association to stage a World Cup of Hockey in February 2024, which is popular among players even if it knocks the calendar off kilter again.

“I think they missed out on a huge, huge portion of the international game that’s really going to be missed,” McDavid said. “We need to figure out a way to get an international tournament in as quickly as possible.”

NHL free agency tracker 2022: Full list of offseason signings

nhl free agency tracker
Brian Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images

It’s time for NHL Free Agency! The offseason is under way and with the market opening July 13 there will be plenty of action this summer. Some teams have already been busy getting their 2022-23 rosters in order. Check back here for all of the signings that teams will be making in hopes of improving their chances at winning the 2023 Stanley Cup.

NHL Free Agency Signings

July 20

• Capitals sign Gabriel Carlsson to a one-year, $750,000 deal

July 19

• Devils sign Vitek Vanecek to a three-year, $10.2 million deal (Link)
• Avalanche signs Callahan Burke to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Flyers sign Isaac Ratcliffe to a one-year, $813,750 deal
• Jets sign Saku Maenalanen to a one-year, $750,000 deal

July 18

• Bruins sign Jack Ahcan to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Bruins sign Matt Filipe to a one-year, $787,500 deal
• Bruins sign Ryan Mast to a three-year, $2.55 million deal
• Blackhawks sign Buddy Robinson to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canadiens sign Samuel Montembeault to a two-year, $2 million deal
• Coyotes sign Conor Geekie to a three-year, $5.15 million deal
• Predators sign John Leonard to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Predators sign Thomas Novak to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sabres sign Brett Murray to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sharks sign Luke Kunin to a two-year, $5.5 million deal
• Sharks sign Kaapo Kähkönen to a two-year, $5.5 millon deal

July 17

• Blues sign Niko Mikkola to a one-year, $1.9 million deal
• Maple Leafs sign Pierre Engvall to a one-year, $2.25 million deal
• Oilers sign Mattias Janmark to a one-year, $1.25 million deal
• Panthers sign Michael Del Zotto to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Wild signs Mitchell Chaffee to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Wild signs Nick Swaney to a one-year, $750,000 deal

July 16

• Canadiens sign Rem Pitlick to a two-year, $1.7 million deal
• Canucks sign Michael DiPietro to a one-year, $2.2 million deal
• Ducks sign Pavel Mintyukov to a three-year, $5.2 million deal
• Flames sign Benjamin Jones to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Jets sign Jansen Harkins to a two-year, $1.7 million deal
• Penguins sign Owen Pickering to a three-year, $3.6 million deal
• Wild signs Liam Öhgren to a three-year, $4.325 million deal

July 15

• Avalanche signs Brad Hunt to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Blue Jackets signs Nick Blankenburg to a two-year, $1.62 million deal
• Blues sign Martin Frk to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Capitals sign Ludwig Person to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Capitals sign Alexander Suzdalev to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Flyers sign Morgan Frost to a one-year, $800,000 deal
• Hurricanes sign Mackenzie MacEachern to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Hurricanes sign Malte Stromwell to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Islanders sign Calle Odelius to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Jets sign Ashton Sautner to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Jets sign Elias Salomonsson to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Maple Leafs sign Calle Järnkrok to a four-year, $8.4 million deal
• Oilers sign Reid Schaefer to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Panthers sign Gerald Mayhew to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Panthers sign Evan Nause to a three-year, $2.775 million deal
• Predators sign Zach Sanford to a one-year, $850,000 deal
• Predators sign Joakim Kemell to a three-year, $4.35 million deal
• Rangers sign Adam Sykora to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Sabres sign Lawrence Pilut to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sabres sign Jiri Kulich to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Sabres sign Noah Östlund to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Sabres sign Matthew Savoie to a three-year, $2.85 million deal

July 14

• Blackhawks sign Dylan Sikura to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blues sign Josh Leivo to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blues sign Anthony Angello to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blues sign Scott Perunovich to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blues sign Matthew Highmore to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blues sign Dylan McLaughlin to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blues sign Nathan Walker to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canucks sign Christian Wolanin to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Capitals sign Dylan Strome to a one-year, $3.5 million deal
• Capitals sign Henrik Borgstrom to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Coyotes sign Jean-Sébastien Dea to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Ducks sign Lukas Klok to a one-year, $950,000 deal
• Devils sign Ondrej Palat to a five-year, $30 million deal
• Ducks sign Colton White to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Ducks sign Justin Kirkland to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Ducks sign Chase De Leo to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Ducks sign Austin Strand to a five-year, $30 million deal
• Ducks sign Glenn Gawdin to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Golden Knights sign Sakari Manninen to a one-year $750,000 deal
• Golden Knights sign Spencer Foo to a one-year $750,000 deal
• Hurricanes sign Zach Sawchenko to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Jets sign Kyle Capobianco to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Jets sign Alex Limoges to a one-year, $780,000 deal
• Kraken signs Austin Poganski to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kraken signs John Hayden to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kraken signs Cameron Hughes to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Maple Leafs sign Victor Mete to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Maple Leafs sign Jordie Benn to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Panthers sign Mark Pysyk to a one-year, $850,000 deal
• Panthers sign Rūdolfs Balcers to a one-year $750,000 deal
• Predators sign Jordan Gross to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Predators sign Roland McKeown to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Predators sign Kiefer Sherwood to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Predators sign Cole Smith to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Predators sign Mark Jankowski to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Predators sign Kevin Gravel to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Predators sign Kevin Lankinen to a two-year, $1.5 million deal
• Rangers sign Ryan Carpenter to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Rangers sign Turner Elson to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Senators sign Antoine Bibeau to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Senators sign Jacob Larsson to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Senators sign Josh Norris to an eight-year, $63.6 million deal
• Senators sign Tomas Hamara to an three-year, $2.57 million deal
• Sharks sign CJ Suess to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sharks sign Aaron Dell to a one-year, $775,000 deal
• Sharks sign Matthew Benning to a four-year, $5 million deal
• Sharks sign Markus Nutivaara to a one-year, $1.75 million deal
• Sharks sign Andrew Agozzino to a two-year, $1.55 million deal
• Sharks sign CJ Suess to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Stars sign Riley Barber to a one-year, $750,000 deal

OFFER SHEET COMPENSATION: 2022-23

July 13

• Blue Jackets sign Johnny Gaudreau to a seven-year, $68.25 million deal (Link)
• Blues sign Thomas Greiss to a one-year, $1.5 million deal (Link)
• Capitals sign Darcy Kuemper to a five-year, $26.25 million deal (Link)
• Lightning signs Mikhail Sergachev to an eight-year, $68 million deal (Link)
• Lightning signs Anthony Cirelli to an eight-year, $50 million deal (Link)
• Lightning signs Erik Cernak to an eight-year, $41.6 million deal (Link)
• Maple Leafs sign Ilya Samsonov to a one-year, $1.8 million deal (Link)
• Oilers sign Evander Kane to a four-year, $20.5 million deal (Link)
• Oilers sign Jack Campbell to a five-year, $25 million deal (Link)
• Rangers sign Vincent Trocheck to a seven-year, $39.375 million deal (Link)
• Rangers sign Jaroslav Halak to a one-year, $1.55 million deal (Link)
• Red Wings sign Andrew Copp to a five-year, $28.125 million deal (Link)
• Red Wings sign David Perron to two-year, $9.5 million deal (Link)
• Red Wings sign Ben Chiarot to a four-year, $19 million deal (Link)
• Senators sign Claude Giroux to a three-year, $19.5 million deal (Link)
• Avalanche signs Darren Helm to a one-year, $1.25 million deal
• Avalanche signs Josh Manson to a four-year, $18 million deal
• Avalanche signs Charles Hudon to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Avalanche signs Spencer Smallman to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Avalanche signs Josh Jacobs to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Avalanche signs Andreas Englund to a one-year, $750,000
• Avalanche signs Artturi Lehkonen to a five-year, $22.5 million deal
• Avalanche signs Jonas Johansson to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blackhawks sign Andreas Athanasiou to a one-year, $3 million deal
• Blackhawks sign Max Domi to a one-year, $3 million deal
• Blackhawks sign Colin Blackwell to a two-year, $2.4 million deal
• Blackhawks sign Alex Stalock to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blackhawks sign Brett Seney to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blackhawks sign Luke Philip to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Blue Jackets sign Denton Mateychuk to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Blue Jackets sign David Jiříček to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Blue Jackets sign Erik Gudbranson to a four-year, $16 million deal
• Blues sign Robert Thomas to an eight-year, $65 million deal
• Blues sign Nick Leddy to a four-year, $16 million deal
• Blues sign Noel Acciari to a one-year, $1.25 million deal
• Blues sign Will Bitten to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Bruins sign AJ Greer to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Bruins sign Keith Kinkaid to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Bruins sign Connor Carrick to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Bruins sign Daniel Renouf to two-year, $1.25 million deal
• Bruins sign Vinni Letteri to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canadiens sign Nathan Schnarr to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canadiens sign Mitchell Stephens to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canadiens sign Madison Bowey to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canadiens sign Joël Teasdale to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canadiens sign Alex Belzile to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canadiens sign Anthony Richard to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canucks sign Andrei Kuzmenko to a one-year, $1.8 million deal
• Canucks sign Curtis Lazar to a three-year, $3 million deal
• Canucks sign Dakota Joshua to a two-year, $1.65 million deal
• Canucks sign Wyatt Kalynuk to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canucks sign Phil Di Giuseppe to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canucks sign Collin Delia to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canucks sign Ilya Mikheyev to a four-year, $19 million deal
• Capitals sign Charlie Lindgren to a three-year, $3.3 million deal
• Capitals sign Matt Irwin to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Capitals sign Marcus Johansson to a one-year, $1.1 million deal
• Capitals sign Erik Gustafsson to a one-year, $800,000 deal
• Coyotes sign Laurent Dauphin to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Coyotes sign Jon Gillies to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Coyotes sign Bokondji Imama to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Coyotes sign Troy Stecher to a one-year, $1.2 million deal
• Coyotes sign Joshua Brown to a two-year, $2.55 million deal
• Coyotes sign Nick Bjugstad to a one-year, $900,000 deal
• Devils sign Brendan Smith to a two-year, $2.2 million deal
• Devils sign Tyler Wotherspoon to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Devils sign Brian Pinho to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Devils sign Jack Dugan to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Ducks sign Frank Vatrano to a three-year, $10.95 million deal
• Ducks sign Ryan Strome to a five-year, $25 million deal
• Flames sign Kevin Rooney to a two-year, $2.6 million deal
• Flames sign Nikita Zadorov to a two-year, $7.5 million deal
• Flames sign Dennis Gilbert to a one-year, $1.525 million deal
• Flames sign Nicolas Meloche to a one-year, $950,000 deal
• Flames sign Trevor Lewis to one-year, $800,000 deal
• Flames sign Clark Bishop to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Flames sign Nick DeSimone to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Flames sign Oscar Dansk to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Flames sign Colton Poolman to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Flyers sign Adam Brooks to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Flyers sign Nicolas Deslauriers to a four-year, $7 million deal
• Flyers sign Cooper Marody to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Flyers sign Kevin Connauton to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Flyers sign Louis Belpedio to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Flyers sign Justin Braun to one-year, $1.75 million deal
• Flyers sign Troy Grosenick to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Golden Knights sign Byron Froese to two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Golden Knights sign Sheldon Rempal to two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Golden Knights sign Jonas Røndbjerg to three-year, $2.3 million deal
• Golden Knights sign Reilly Smith to three-year, $15 million deal
• Golden Knights sign Brett Howden to one-year, $1.5 million deal
• Golden Knights sign Michael Hutchinson to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Hurricanes sign Ondřej Kaše to one-year, $1.5 million deal
• Jets sign Kevin Stenlund to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Jets sign David Rittich to one-year, $900,000 deal
• Kings sign Brendan Lemieux to a one-year, $1.35 million deal
• Kings sign Pheonix Copley to a one-year, $825,000 deal
• Kings sign Tobie Paquette-Bisson to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kraken signs Andre Burakovsky to a five-year, $27.5 million deal
• Kraken signs Brogan Rafferty to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kraken signs Andrew Poturalski to two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Kraken signs Magnus Hellberg to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kraken signs Ryan Winterton to three-year, $2.54 million deal
• Kraken signs Jacob Melanson to three-year, $2.53 million deal
• Kraken signs Jesper Frödén to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kraken signs Martin Jones to one-year, $2 million deal
• Kraken signs Justin Schultz to a two-year, $6 million deal
• Lightning signs Ian Cole to a one-year, $3 million deal
• Lightning signs Vladislav Namestnikov to a one-year, $2.5 million deal
• Lightning signs Haydn Fleury to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Maple Leafs sign Dennis Hildeby to a one-year, $843,330 deal
• Maple Leafs sign Nicolas Aube-Kubel to a one-year, $1 million deal
• Maple Leafs sign Adam Gaudette to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Maple Leafs sign Denis Malgin to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Oilers sign Brett Kulak to a four-year, $11 million deal
• Oilers sign Greg McKegg to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Oilers sign Calvin Pickard to two-year, $1.25 million deal
• Panthers sign Nathan Staios to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Panthers sign Colin White to a one-year, $1.2 million deal
• Panthers sign Marc Staal to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Panthers sign Anthony Bitetto to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Panthers sign Alex Lyon to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Panthers sign Nick Cousins to a two-year, $2.2 million deal
• Penguins sign Xavier Ouellet to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Penguins sign Dustin Tokarski to a one-year, $775,000 deal
• Penguins sign Drake Caggiula to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Penguins sign Josh Archibald to a one-year, $900,000 deal
• Penguins sign Jan Rutta to a three-year, $8.25 million deal
• Rangers sign Louis Domingue to a two-year, $1.55 million deal
• Rangers sign Andy Welinski to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Red Wings sign Marco Kasper to a three-year, $2.85 million deal
• Red Wings sign Dominik Kubalik to a two-year, $5 million deal
• Red Wings sign Olli Määttä to a one-year, $2.25 million deal
• Red Wings sign Austin Czarnik to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Red Wings sign Matt Luff to a one-year, $2.25 million deal
• Sabres sign Victor Olofsson to a two-year, $9.5 million deal
• Sabres sign Ilya Lyubushkin to a two-year, $5.5 million deal
• Sabres sign Eric Comrie to a two-year, $3.6 million deal
• Sabres sign Kale Clague to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sabres sign Jeremy Davies to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sabres sign Chase Priskie to a one-year, $800,000 deal
• Senators sign Kristians Rubins to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Senators sign Jacob Lucchini to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Senators sign Scott Sabourin to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sharks sign Oskar Lindblom to a two-year, $5 million deal
• Sharks sign Nico Sturm to a three-year, $6 million deal
• Stars sign Mason Marchment to a four-year, $18 million deal
• Stars sign Colin Miller to a two-year, $3.7 million deal
• Wild signs Niclas Petan to two-year, $1.25 million deal
• Wild signs Brandon Baddock to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Wild signs Andrej Šustr to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Wild signs Steven Fogarty to one-year, $750,000 deal

July 12

• Penguins sign Evgeni Malkin to a four-year, $24.4 million deal (Link)
• Blues sign Hugh McGing to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Hurricanes sign Stefan Noesen to a one-year, $1.525 million deal
• Kings sign Alexander Edler to a one-year, $1.5 million deal
• Kraken signs Alex True to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Penguins sign Pierre-Olivier Joseph to a two-year, $1.65 million deal
• Predators sign Devin Cooley to a one-year, $787,500 deal
• Sabres sign Vinnie Hinostroza to a one-year, $1.7 million deal
• Sabres sign Malcolm Subban to a one-year, $850,000 deal

July 11

• Avalanche signs Valeri Nichushkin to an eight-year, $49 million deal (Link)
• Canadiens sign Corey Schueneman to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canadiens sign Michael Pezzetta to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Coyotes sign Christian Fischer to a one-year, $$1,125,875 deal
• Coyotes sign Cam Dineen to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kings sign Carl Grundström to a two-year, $2.6 million deal
• Kings sign Lias Andersson to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kraken signs Karson Kuhlman to a one-year, $825,000 deal
• Penguins sign Alexander Nylander to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Penguins sign Rickard Rakell to a six-year, $30 million deal
• Predators sign Jimmy Huntington to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Rangers sign Libor Hájek to a one-year, $800,000 deal
• Stars sign Marian Student to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Wild signs Zane MacIntyre to a one-year, $750,000 deal

July 10

• Kings sign Adrian Kempe to four-year, $22 million deal (Link)
• Avalanche sign Alexandar Georgiev to a three-year, $10.2 million deal (Link)
• Avalanche signs Jacob MacDonald to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Lightning signs Maxime Lagacé to one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sabres sign Jacob Bryson to a two-year, $3.7 million deal

July 9

• Predators sign Filip Forsberg to eight-year, $68 million deal (Link)
• Islanders sign Otto Koivula to a two-year, $1.6 million deal
• Islanders sign Jeff Kubiak to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Islanders sign Grant Hutton to a three-year, $2.325 million deal
• Islanders sign Ken Appleby to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Islanders sign Andy Andreoff to a two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Islanders sign Sebastian Aho to a two-year, $1.65 million deal
• Islanders sign Robin Salo to a two-year, $1.6 million deal

July 8

• Flyers sign Tony DeAngelo to two-year, $10 million deal (Link)
• Red Wings sign Ville Husso to three-year, $14.25 million deal (Link)
• Capitals sign Lucas Johansen to two-year, $1.525 million deal
• Panthers sign Eetu Luostarinen to two-year, $3 million deal
• Panthers sign Lucas Carlsson to one-year, $800,000 deal
• Sabres sign Brandon Biro to two-year, $1.525 million deal

July 7

• Penguins sign Kris Letang to six-year, $36.6 million deal (Link)
• Wild signs Marc-Andre Fleury to a two-year, $7 million deal (Link)

July 6

• Blue Jackets sign Adam Boqvist to a three-year, $7.8 million deal
• Wild signs Jacob Middleton to a three-year, $7.35 million deal

July 5

• Avalanche signs Andrew Cogliano to a one-year, $1.25 million deal
• Bruins sign Kyle Keyser to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Bruins sign Nick Wolff to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Panthers sign Aleksi Heponiemi to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Penguins sign Casey DeSmith to a two-year, $3.6 million deal

July 2

• Blue Jackets sign Carson Meyer to a one-year, $750,000 deal

July 1

• Canucks sign Brock Boeser to three-year, $19.95 million deal (Link)
• Blue Jackets sign Josh Dunne to a one-year, $874,125 deal
• Canucks sign Jack Rathbone to a two-year, $1.7 million deal
• Canucks sign Noah Juulsen to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canucks sign William Lockwood to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Kings sign Frédéric Allard to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Lightning signs Nick Paul to a seven-year, $22.05 million deal
• Rangers sign Julien Gauthier to a one-year, $800,000 deal

June 30

• Kings sign Matt Villalta to a one year, $787,500 deal
• Kraken signs Gustav Olofsson to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Sabres sign Craig Anderson to a one-year, $2 million deal
• Stars sign Riley Tufte to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Stars sign Scott Wedgewood to a two-year, $2 million deal

June 29

• Kings sign Kevin Fiala to a seven-year, $55.125 million deal (Link)
• Lightning signs Darren Raddysh to a two-year, $1,525,000 deal
• Sabres sign Sean Malone to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Stars sign Ryan Shea to a one-year, $750,000 deal

June 28

• Stars sign Joseph Cecconi to a one-year, $750,000 deal

June 27

• Canucks sign Sheldone Dries to a two-year, $1,525,000 deal
• Canucks sign John Stevens to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Canucks sign Guillaume Brisebois to a one-year, $750,000 deal
• Maple Leafs sign Timothy Liljegren to a two-year, $2.8 million deal
• Panthers sign Matt Kiersted to a two-year, $1,525,000 deal

NHL Power Rankings: Top free agents for 2022 offseason

nhl free agents
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With the NHL Free Agency starting on Wednesday we are taking an updated look at our top unrestricted free agent Power Rankings from back in May, removing the players that have already re-signed with their teams (Kris Letang, Filip Forsberg, Valeri Nichushkin, Marc-Andre Fleury, and Rickard Rakell) and adding some of the restricted free agents that were not given qualifying offers on Monday.

The latter list includes former Blackhawks Dylan Strome and Dominik Kubalik, goalie Ilya Samsonov, and winger Danton Heinen.

You might notice one name missing from the list: Boston Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron. We made the decision to leave him out of the rankings because while his contract is technically expiring, he has made it clear that there are only two realistic options for him: Re-signing with the Boston Bruins or retirement. That does not really make him a fit here with the rest of the players on the rankings.

Which players make the cut and where do they rank?

To this week’s NHL Power Rankings!

1. Johnny Gaudreau. Gaudreau picked a heck of a team to have a career year and be the second-leading scorer in the NHL. Gaudreau is an incredible talent, one of the most productive players in the league, and is still at an age where he should have a lot of productive hockey ahead of him. Whether it is Calgary or somewhere else, he is going to cash in this offseason. [UPDATE: Johnny Hockey is heading to the Blue Jackets on a seven-year, $68.25 million deal.]

2. Nazem Kadri. The pro: He had an incredible season and is a really good two-way player at a premium position. The concern: He will be 32 when his next contract begins and he has never really produced at this level prior to this season. Can he duplicate that on a different team, and for how many years?

3. Evgeni Malkin. If he is healthy he is still an impact player, especially on the power play. Maybe not as dominant as he was at his peak, but you would take him on your team if given the opportunity. It seems weird imagining him in a uniform other than the Penguins but that seems to be the way this is heading after it was revealed on Monday that he is testing the open market. [UPDATE: Malkin has signed a four-year, $24.4 million extension to stay in Pittsburgh.]

4. Claude Giroux. Pretty similar to Malkin in the sense that he is not quite the player he was at his peak, but he will definitely make somebody a better hockey team. Would Philadelphia bring him back? Or does he want to take another serious run at a Stanley Cup? [UPDATE: Giroux has signed a three-year, $19.5 million deal with the Senators.]

[NHL free agency tracker 2022: Full list of offseason signings]

5. David Perron. Perron is a steady producer with a track record of being a top-line player on winning teams. Also an overlooked mean streak that some teams will probably love. It probably does not matter where he actually signs because he always finds his way back to St. Louis anyway. [UPDATE: Perron is moving on after signing a two-year, $9.5 million deal with the Red Wings.]

6. Vincent Trocheck. Trocheck is a strong second line center option. Can do everything well, good production, and solid player. The bad news: This is the type of signing in free agency that will look good for two years and then by year three or four you are wondering what you are going to do with him and his salary. [UPDATE: Trocheck is heading to the Rangers after signing a seven-year, $39.375 million deal.]

7. John Klingberg. Klingberg seems to be the type of player whose reputation will depend on who you ask and when you are asking it. His defense gets a lot of criticism, but he can provide some offense from the blue line and is a better all-around player than his critics might have you believe. But is he the player you want to build your defense around? With Letang staying in Pittsburgh he is by far the top defenseman available.

8. Ondrej Palat. Palat might sometimes get overlooked on that Tampa Bay roster, but he has been one of the top players for one of the league’s top teams for a decade. Great second or third line forward for a contender. Not sure Tampa Bay will be able to re-sign him with that salary cap situation. [UPDATE: Palat heads to New Jersey with a five-year, $30 million deal with the Devils.]

9. Andrew Copp. Outstanding defensive forward whose offensive game reached another level this season. Also had a very strong playoff showing that will boost his value for sure. [UPDATE: Copp is moving on to the Red Wings with a five-year, $28.125 million deal.]

10. Evander Kane. Kane is a good player and has been very productive in Edmonton, but when you sign him you are not just signing the player. You are signing everything that comes with the player off the ice, and his off-ice issues are well documented and quite significant (read about them here, here, here, and here). There is a reason Edmonton was able to sign him for so cheap mid-season. But like with Edmonton, it only takes one team being willing to do it. [UPDATE: Kane has re-signed in Edmonton with a four-year, $20.5 million extension.]

11. Darcy Kuemper. Finally, a goalie on the list. Kuemper had a great regular season and has a very solid resume over his career. But teams might look at what happened to Phillip Grubauer when he left Colorado and wonder what happens when a 32-year-old Kuemper is playing behind a worse team. He is leaving Colorado after the team traded for Alexandar Georgiev. [UPDATE: Kuemper signs a five-year, $26.25 million deal with the Capitals.]

12. Jack Campbell. Campbell can be very hit and miss. At times over the past two years he has looked like he put everything together, and at other times he has looked just ordinary. How much faith do you have that you are consistently getting the good version? [UPDATE: The Oilers have given Campbell a five-year, $25 million contract.]

[Related: Tkachuk, Gaudreau headline offseason questions for Flames]

13. Andre Burakovsky. Really productive player and one of the younger players on the list, so his play will probably not drop off too much right away. [UPDATE: Burakovsky heads to the Kraken on a five-year, $27.5 million contract.]

14. Nino Niederreiter. Not a superstar, but he is going to score you 20-25 goals and be a strong possession driver. That is a valuable top-six winger.

15. Ryan Strome. He ended up being a really good addition for the Rangers the past few years and a solid No. 2 center. [UPDATE: Strome heads west after inking a five-year, $25 million deal with the Ducks.]

16. Dylan Strome. There is an argument to be made that Dylan might be an even more attractive option than Ryan given his age and the fact he might be a little cheaper and a better value. It is a mild surprise that the Blackhawks did not want to retain him, but the problem might be that he is just too good for what Chicago wants to accomplish this season. [UPDATE: Strome has signed a one-year, $3.5 million deal with the Capitals.]

17. Dominik Kubalik. Kubalik came out of nowhere with a 30-goal (in only 68 games) performance as a rookie three years ago but has not been able to match that number ever since. He does have some finishing ability and could be a good scoring option for a team that needs some depth. Like Strome, he was not given a qualifying offer by the Blackhawks. [UPDATE: Kubalik is a Red Wing after signing a two-year, $5 million deal.]

18. Max Domi. Creative playmaker with some defensive shortcomings. Good complementary player but probably not much more than that. [UPDATE: Domi heads to the Blackhawks with a one-year, $3 million deal.]

19. Reilly Smith. Very similar player to Niederreiter in terms of what to expect production wise, but maybe not quite the same level of possession driving ability. [UPDATE: Smith is staying in Las Vegas on a three-year, $15 million extension.]

20. Ilya Samsonov. Samsonov was supposed to be the Capitals’ long-term solution in goal and replace Braden Holtby. It has not worked out at all. With the trade of Vitek Vanecek and not qualifying Samsonov the Capitals are now completelly overhauling their goalie position. He might draw some strong interest in an alarmingly thin goalie market with somebody hoping he can still reach some of his potential. [UPDATE: Samsonov has signed a one-year, $1.8 million contract with the Maple Leafs.]

21. Brett Kulak. The former Montreal defenseman teams should have been trying to acquire when the Ben Chiarot bidding war happened. Nothing flashy about his play, but he is a very good mid-pairing defender. [UPDATE: Kulak moves to the Oilers with a four-year, $11 million contract.]

22. Danton Heinen. Heinen had a strong season for the Penguins, scoring a career high 18 goals. But that was probably going to drive up his price tag due to arbitration and the Penguins obviously did not want to go there, especially with the re-signing of Rickard Rakell. Good all around player with some scoring touch.

23. Mason Marchment. A late bloomer, Marchment had a really nice year for the Panthers. Can he repeat it? How much is that one year at age 26 worth on the open market? [UPDATE: Marchment is heading to Dallas after signing a four-year, $18 million deal.]

24. P.K. Subban. Still a big name, still extremely talented with the occasional “wow” moment, but not quite the consistent impact player and superstar he was in his prime.

25. Phil Kessel. Kessel is a new addition to the list with some of the other wings re-signing. He is not an elite goal scorer anymore, but he is always going to be in the lineup and while his goal scoring has started to dry up he remains an excellent playmaker. You need a specialized role for him, but he can still provide something.

NHL Power Rankings: Top storylines heading into NHL Free Agency

NHL Power Rankings
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In this week’s edition of the NHL Power Rankings we take a look ahead to the start of free agency on Wednesday and the top storylines that will unfold over the next few days.

Will Johnny Gaudreau reach the open market? Will Pittsburgh find a way to keep Evgeni Malkin? Just how low will the Chicago Blackhawks go in their rebuild? How about that goalie market?

We take a look at all of those stories and more.

What are we paying attention to most?

To this week’s NHL Power Rankings!

1. Will Calgary get Johnny Gaudreau and Matthew Tkachuk signed long-term?

Gaudreau and Tkachuk were one of the most dominant duos in the NHL during the 2021-22 season, and there is a very strong and convincing argument to be made that they were the most dominant duo. When those two were on the ice the Flames were a runaway freight train that steamrolled over everybody they played. They are both in need of new contracts this offseason, with Gaudreau still eligible for unrestricted free agency and Tkachuk a restricted free agent. Gaudreau will have no shortage of suitors if he reaches the open market and would seem a lock to sign the biggest contract this offseason. The Flames’ ability to re-sign him and work out an extension with Tkachuk will go a long way toward determining what their next few years will look like.

2. Will Evgeni Malkin be back in Pittsburgh?

The Penguins have already re-signed two of their top unrestricted free agents by agreeing to long-term deals with Bryan Rust and Kris Letang. Malkin still remains a mystery with the start of free agency just days away. The main sticking point seems to be term, with the Penguins seemingly preferring a two-or-three year deal and Malkin wanting a four-year deal. The concerns with Malkin are fair. He is going to be 36 years old, he has had major knee injuries the past couple of years, and he is going to start slowing down. In all honesty, he already has. The counterpoint to that is that he is still almost certainly a better option than any potential replacement the Penguins can bring in this offseason.

[Related: Penguins re-sign Kris Letang to six-year, $36.6 million contract]

3. What is Toronto going to do in goal?

This is starting to get interesting. Talks with Jack Campbell do not seem to be progressing, and the goalie market has dried up significantly over the past week with Marc-Andre Fleury, Alexandar Georgiev, and Ville Husso all going off the market. Can they afford Darcy Kuemper? Do they trade for Matt Murray and hope he can rebound? This is a big question mark that still needs to addressed and the options are getting thin.

4. How deep will Chicago’s rebuild go?

Alex DeBrincat, Brandon Hagel, and Kirby Dach are gone. Dominik Kubalik and Dylan Strome seem unlikely to get qualifying offers. Brett Connolly is getting bought out. This team already stinks and it is going to get dramatically worse. The only next logical steps are trading Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. They will almost certainly have to eat salary to make those moves happen, and Toews’ value is probably in the tank, but there is really no point in keeping them around at this point given the direction this team is clearly taking.

[Related: Blackhawks trade Alex DeBrincat to Ottawa Senators]

5. What will Edmonton do with its newfound salary cap space?

Thanks to Duncan Keith’s retirement and the trade to dump Zack Kassian’s remaining salary the Edmonton Oilers are actually entering the offseason with some salary cap flexibility. Despite their success this past season it is still a team in need of some major improvements regarding its depth and goaltending. How much are they willing to pay Evander Kane? Can they get Kuemper in free agency?

6. How much will John Klingberg get?

With Letang re-signed in Pittsburgh, the already-thin UFA defense market gets even thinner. It is basically Klingberg, and then a pretty gigantic gap to the next best player. That is bad news for everybody except John Klingberg. He can still bring plenty of offense and is not just the best option for a team in need of a top-four defenseman in free agency; he is probably the only option in free agency.

7. What will the Canucks do with J.T. Miller?

He has been on the trade rumor mill for more than a year. He has just one year remaining on his contract, and it remains to be seen whether or not they can get him re-signed. He has been outstanding with the Canucks and is coming off a career year that saw him record 99 points. He is an impact player, but do not get high hopes for a massive trade return. These deals never bring back what you expect.

8. Who can Colorado keep?

There is no downside to winning, but if there were a downside it would probably be the fact your players get more expensive and you can not keep everybody. Darcy Kuemper is already done, but Andre Burakovsky, Valeri Nichushkin, and Nazem Kadri are all unrestricted free agents, while Arturri Lehkonen is a significant restricted free agent. They do not have the salary cap space to keep everybody. Nichushkin in particular seems like he might be able to really cash in after his playoff run.

[Related: 2022 NHL Free Agency Signing Tracker]

9. How does Tampa Bay solve its salary cap crunch?

The Lightning enter the offseason with no salary cap space and have already traded Ryan McDonagh. Most of the roster remains under contract, but Ondrej Palat is a pretty significant unrestricted free agent. Can they move somebody like an Alex Killorn to create more flexibility?

Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

10. The Bruins offseason

All signs point to Patrice Bergeron returning, but nothing is official yet. There is speculation that David Krejci could return, but that is far from a given. There is also the looming David Pastrnak contract extension that needs to be settled. They could either still look like a strong contender, or take a pretty significant step backwards depending on how all of those play out.

11. Offer sheets?

This is typically a waste of time to discuss because it is rare to see them signed, and even rarer to see them not get matched. But we have seen more of a willingness to go that route in recent years, at least as far as Montreal and Carolina are concerned. Could Calgary be vulnerable to an offer sheet for Andrew Mangiapane if they re-sign Gaudreau and Tkachuk? Would Toronto try to get bold and go for Jake Oettinger? Is there somebody in Carolina (Martin Necas) that Montreal could target to continue their RFA back-and-forth? Somebody might want to look at Arturri Lehkonen in Colorado is the Avalanche have a salary cap crunch.

[Related: NHL Power Rankings: Most intriguing restricted free agent situations]

12. What do the Rangers do?

The New York Rangers had a great playoff run, but there was nothing about it that seemed sustainable. They still need to get better and that might be a challenge. Andrew Copp, Frank Vatrano, and Ryan Strome are all unrestricted free agents and will need to be replaced while also making the necessary improvements to take the next step. As of Monday they have about $10 million in salary cap space to do all of that.

13. Does Detroit have another big move?

It is time for the Red Wings to take the next step in their rebuild. They have some great young core players, made a big move for a goalie (Husso), but they are still facing an uphill battle in that division.

14. How do the Islanders get better?

Speaking of New York teams needing to get better, what about the Islanders? It is pretty clear they think they can still compete and that the 2021-22 season was a fluke (and maybe it was), but they have got to add some offense somewere. Alex DeBrincat and Kevin Fiala have already been traded. Filip Forsberg re-signed in Nashville. Johnny Gaudreau seems like a pipe dream. Could they put together enough of a trade package for J.T. Miller? They need to do something because the team as constructed is not close to good enough.

15. What is the market for the big names that are declining?

Specifically, Claude Giroux, Phil Kessel, and P.K. Subban. Of the three, Giroux is probably still the most productive, but how much is a team willing to give him? Could he return to Philadelphia? Re-sign with Florida? Maybe go closer to home to a suddenly improving Senators team? Kessel is also intriguing because even though his goal scoring has dried up, he remains a solid playmaker that could still produce in the right role.

16. Capitals questions

They still have Ilya Samsonov in net, but is he the answer? How do they find a complement to him? Also what are their plans at center with Nicklas Backstrom’s injury situation? Will he back? Do they LTIR him and find a replacement?

 

Kings spending more like contenders, rebuild over or not

Kings spending more like contenders, rebuild over or not
Andy Devlin/NHLI via Getty Images

By almost any measure, making the playoffs earlier than expected is and was a fantastic development for the Kings.

Sometimes, when your legs start moving to a quicker tempo, you do risk stumbling a bit. With that in mind, it’s fascinating to watch as the Kings continue to accelerate away from their rebuild — and ascend the ranks where they’re not far away from the NHL’s biggest spenders.

Consider some of the fuel the Kings consumed to try to rocket up the ranks, and possibly put that rebuild totally behind them.

After acquiring and signing Fiala, Kings extend Kempe

In one of the splashier moves of this offseason, the Kings traded defensive prospect Brock Faber and the 19th pick in the 2022 NHL Draft for Kevin Fiala‘s rights. The Kings handed Fiala a bold seven-year contract with a $7.875 million cap hit in late June.

A couple weeks later, the Kings retained their in-house scoring threat, signing Adrian Kempe to a four-year contract with a $5.5M cap hit.

Now, these expenditures range between “reasonable enough.”

And potentially quite nice.

Yet, the combined cost (close to $13.4M per year for multiple years) of Kempe + Fiala really drives home a point. These aren’t your low-spending, rebuilding Kings anymore.

Are the Kings truly out of their rebuild stage, though? Well, they kinda have to be, barring a pivot or two. Let’s ponder a salary cap outlook for the Kings, and their place in the Pacific Division, Western Conference, and NHL.

Kings salary cap shrinking rapidly

Via Cap Friendly, the Kings possess almost $6.5M in cap space. That projection comes with 17 roster spots covered.

Sean Durzi headlines quite the bundle of RFAs, while the Kings also face decisions on veteran could-be unrestricted free agent defensemen in Alexander Edler and Olli Määttä.

With Drew Doughty and Sean Walker injured last season, young Kings defensemen Durzi and Jordan Spence handled elevated roles remarkably well. For the most part.

(Any defenseman’s going to struggle against Connor McDavid.)

Considering the emergence of Durzi and Spence, and the hopeful healthy returns of Doughty and/or Walker, the Kings may be able to say goodbye to a veteran blueliner or two.

At the forward level, they might also see a prospect or two make a jump — thus filling a roster spot cheaply.

With that in mind, the Kings don’t necessarily need to trade one of their two goalies Jonathan Quick and Cal Petersen. Still, the duo costs a combined $10.8 million in salary cap space; Quick’s entering a contract year at $5.8M, while Petersen’s $5M cap hit lasts through 2024-25.

Trading one of the two might end up making at least some sense.

[And NHL teams in need of goalies may very well be better off going the trade route]

Barring a trade of Quick or Petersen, the Kings figure to enter next season fairly close to the salary cap ceiling. It’s quite the rapid ascension to a team that didn’t look ready for the throne as recently as last offseason.

(Although even then, they did make investments to get closer to a competent level in trading for Viktor Arvidsson and signing Phillip Danault.)

Bigger spending brings higher expectations, and larger risks. What if the Kings’ path is less of a straight line up, and instead a journey with ups and downs?

What if the Kings overachieved in 2021-22?

Sometimes, a team makes the playoffs earlier than expected, then overreacts.

The Kings merely need to look to Pacific Division opponent Vancouver for an example of getting too hasty.

After losing in Game 7 of the 2011 Stanley Cup Final, the Canucks fell in the First Round three times, and missed the playoffs once. Then the real downfall happened, as the Canucks missed the playoffs four years in a row (2015-16 through 2018-19).

Yet, in 2019-20, the Canucks didn’t just survive the Qualifying Round in the strange playoff bubble setup. They beat both the Wild and Blues in series, then pushed the Golden Knights to a Game 7.

During the Jim Benning era, the Canucks always seemed to try to force the process to speed up. Sometimes, it meant adding the sort of veterans you’d hope were the last missing pieces before they actually had most of the actual pieces that matter in place. Heaving it down the field rarely worked for Vancouver, and at times, it seemed like the entire process actually hurt the development of young players like Elias Pettersson.

Now, the Kings haven’t blundered in Benning-like ways. Sure, there was some risk involved with the Danault contract, but he’s the sort of player who can really move the needle at a reasonable price. For a team that played structured hockey yet couldn’t really finish, a game-breaker like Kevin Fiala could be a godsend.

And the Kings still possess most of the pieces of a farm system graded among the best in the NHL. It’s not like they’ve “mortgaged their future.”

Maybe the point, then, is to practice a certain bit of patience. Or at least accept a degree of uncertainty.

A lot of variables in the West

Look around the West, and you can talk yourself in and out of the Kings being a clear playoff team.

While the Avalanche look solid, others could go plenty of ways. The Flames may not be powers without Johnny Gaudreau, Matthew Tkachuk, or both. The Canucks and Jets hope last season was just a hiccup, and the Golden Knights really hope that they’ll return to form.

All of those variables create a hazy outlook for Los Angeles. Maybe everything clicks, and a team that got a lot of the “process” part of being a successful team right …

Kings spending more like contenders, rebuild over or not 2021-22 Evolving Hockey Team RAPM
(via Evolving Hockey)

… Will enjoy some luck in the form of scoring more goals on all of those chances?

On the other side, the Kings may also go through some growing pains. If that happens, and other West teams get a lot better, a playoff appearance is no guarantee.

That may seem gloomy, but it’s only a cause for concern if the Kings lose sight of what’s been an impressive vision during their rebuild. They’re entering that challenging stage where “potential” needs to result in production. Sometimes that’s not just a linear flight upward, but a journey with peaks and valleys.

Keep a cool head, and the Kings could really be onto something. Either sooner or later.