- The Thornton deal makes a move to trade Marleau all the more likely. Though its not certain when. Certainly, he may turn out to be more affordable to some teams than the available UFA's. One source also stated that the Thornton deal was a sign and trade, though at the relative discount price Joe gave the Sharks, we couldn't see him dealt, unless it was a substantial return.
- The Panthers OVERPAID for Zednik. Yes, he did have injury issues last season, but when healthy he was inconsistent at best. Not worth 1.75/year in our opinion
- Briere and the Flyers are getting close, but it may come down to a no grade clause Daniel is demanding
- The Schneider to the Ducks does NOT mean Niedermayer is about to retire, BUT will mean the RedWings will be significant players in the Rafalski/Souray sweep stakes.
- Tom Poti to the Caps for 4 years/14 mil. Decent deal for both sides. Poti had a good season for the Isles. Can he be counted upon to help a very young, but talented Caps rear guard? Will this also allow McPhee to use one of those players to trade for a 1st line center? The Marleau deal is still being discussed!
- The Iginla extension,like the Thornton extension was a huge home town discount. Both of those deals can NOT be making the agents of the UFA too happy. If a Joe Thornton and Jerome Iginla are worth no more than 7 mil, how could a Briere/Gomez/Drury/Smyth get anywhere near that? (They probably will)
2) So why has it been so quiet unlike last year? Well the amazing inflation for one. Sure teams can spend an additional 6 million more than last year, BUT few GM's want to be up against the cap before the season starts. As we have stated in our UFA analyses, few of the players available are worth their expected asking prices. Many GM's got scared off. Will this, and the Iginla/Thornton extensions help hold down salaries? One asst GM told FAUXRUMORS: "don't count on it!" He is hearing that the old 'big spenders' are all too happy to "give away their money" once again. It just may take a bit longer than last year
3) The fly in the ointment this time around is also the rumors swirling around possible offer sheets to players like Vanek in Buffalo, Emery(who would want him!?!) in Ottawa, and Parise in NJ. Those teams would have trouble matching a significant offer if they also try to retain some of their impending UFA's. So their may be a bit of a chess match going on among the GM's. Who will blink first? Its getting interesting folks. Stay tuned. As always, keep it hear for all the latest!