More listings of the best available NHL UFAs, plus updates on Daniel Alfredsson, Sergei Gonchar and Jeff Halpern.
SPORTSNET.CA: Luke Fox lists his top nine unrestricted free agents still available. From nine to one, they are Jamie McBain, Sami Salo, Andrei Loktionov, Dustin Penner, Saku Koivu, Devin Setoguchi, Martin Brodeur, Tomas Vokoun and Daniel Alfredsson. Michael Del Zotto was also on the list but he signed yesterday with the Philadelphia Flyers.
NBC SPORTS: Daniel Alfredsson will resume skating next week, and how his back responds will determine if he’ll return for another NHL season or retire. If he does return, it will be only with the Detroit Red Wings.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Koivu and Salo could retire. The others could be waiting until next month, during training camp and preseason, to secure NHL contracts.
DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Mike Heika reports the Stars were unable to find a trade partner for ageing defenseman Sergei Gonchar, even though they were willing to pick up half of his $5 million salary.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s just no market for a 40-year-old blueliner whose best days are behind him. The Stars will simply have to play out the season with Gonchar in the lineup and hope for the best.
CSNWASHINGTON.COM: Ben Raby reports former Capitals and Coyotes forward Jeff Halpern remains patient in hopes of signing with an NHL team. He said he’d be fine with signing a tryout contract. He’s only 24 games shy of reaching 1,000 NHL games.
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Shelly Anderson reports Penguins GM Jim Rutherford hasn’t ruled out signing a free agent or inviting someone to training camp on a tryout basis.