Here’s a look at the notable NHL unrestricted free agents still available.
Cody Franson: Theories abound as to why the 27-year-old defenseman remains unsigned nearly a month into free agency. I believe it’s a combination of his asking price (at one point, rumored to be $6 million annually on a long-term deal. It’s likely lower than that now) and the sharp decline in his numbers following his February trade from Toronto to Nashville last season.
Rumors link Franson to the Leafs, Arizona Coyotes, Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres and Vancouver Canucks, but it remains to be seen if any of those clubs eventually sign him. I think the ship has sailed on a return with the Leafs. The Canucks and Penguins lack the cap space, while the Coyotes already added Nicklas Grossman via trade and brought back Zbynek Michalek. The Bruins and Sabres remain possible destinations, but only for an affordable deal.
Christian Ehrhoff: The 33-year-old blueliner is willing to accept a one-year contract. There’s talks the Columbus Blue Jackets could consider Ehrhoff as an addition to their power-play. The Bruins and San Jose Sharks could also have some interest in him.
Curtis Glencross: Earlier this month, there were suggestions Glencross could be a fit with the Maple Leafs, Florida Panthers or New York Rangers. With the Derek Stepan signing, the Rangers are nearly maxed out on cap space and seem set with their current 23-man roster. The Leafs already added a veteran LW via free agency in Daniel Winnik. The Panthers could take a look at Glencross as a training-camp invitee.
Jiri Tlusty: Tlusty hasnt rule out a possible return with the Carolina Hurricanes. He’s also been suggested as an option for the Arizona Coyotes.
Brad Boyes: Bought out by the Florida Panthers, Boyes could be an affordable option for teams seeking experienced depth at right wing. Like Tlusty, Boyes has been considered a possible forward option for the Coyotes.
Marek Zidlicky: The 38-year-old veteran could be sought by teams in need of power-play production from their blueline. The Columbus Blue Jackets could be an option.
Mike Santorelli: An versatile checking-line forward, Santorelli could be a good depth addition. The Edmonton Journal’s Bruce McCurdy believes he could be an intriguing option for the Edmonton Oilers.
Daniel Briere: Not too long ago, Briere would’ve been snapped up on the opening day of the UFA market. However, age has caught up with the former scoring star, who turns 38 later this year. Briere’s still training in hopes of getting an offer, but it might be at best a training camp invitation.