Found July 02, 2012 on
Fox Sports Detroit:
Detroit Red Wings
Toronto Maple Leafs
New Jersey Devils
It was not the major splash that Red Wings fans were hoping for, but with the signing of former Wings forward Mikael Samuelsson, former Nashville agitator Jordin Tootoo, Swiss scoring sensation Damien Brunner and former Maple Leafs goalie Jonas Gustavsson, Detroit was certainly active on Day 1 of free agency.
Many players switched teams on Sunday, but the two top free-agent targets, Ryan Suter and Zach Parise, remain unsigned. As of Sunday night, the speculation machine had Suter on his way to the Motor City and the Wings' chances of landing Parise as remote.
Of course that can all change, so lets focus on the players that will be joining the Red Wings.
Samuelsson: This should not come as a major shock because the Red Wings have a history of bringing back former players. Detroits brass has always liked Samuelssons size, 6-foot-2 and 218 pounds, and his laser shot.
When Samuelsson left Detroit for Vancouver in July 2009, the Wings were counting on Jiri Hudler, who unexpectedly bolted for Russia. If the Wings would have had any inclination that Hudler was going to take his talents to the KHL, Samuelsson would have stayed.
This is a safe signing. Samuelsson and the Wings have familiarity in their favor and like each other.
The major drawback is that Samuelsson is a streaky scorer, just like his fellow countryman, Johan Franzen. You have to hope when one is hot, the other is cold, or the Wings could go weeks without scoring many goals.
Tootoo: A bit of a stunner until you bring Red Wings coach Mike Babcock into the equation. Babcock has lobbied for a physical presence on the Wings for what seems like forever.
The burly Tootoo, 5-foot-9 and 199 pounds, brings a rugged attitude along with 725 career penalty minutes in 486 games played.
He's a rough-and-tumble player who at times plays over the edge and will seek retribution if you take liberties with his teammates, which will bring a smile to Babcocks face.
For old-school Red Wing fans, Tootoo is a Dennis Polonich type of player without Polos offensive up side. But Tootoo isnt as offensively challenged as you might think.
Not a bad signing because it will appease Babcock.
Brunner: Switzerlands scoring star first caught the Wings eye at this years World Championships with his speed, goal-scoring ability and net presence.
Brunner isnt a large man, 5-foot-11 and 187 pounds, but he has a high-end skill set, which is an attribute that always intrigues the Wings. Playing last season in the Swiss league, Brunner had 24 goals and 36 assists in 45 games.
Detroit has penciled in the speed demon as a top-six forward, which could be wishful thinking if Brunner cannot adjust his game to the smaller ice surface of the NHL.
Brunner is a low-risk signing. Hes on an entry-level, two-way contract, and will either be a steal or a one-year disappointment.
Gustavsson: Nicknamed The Monster, Gustavsson is a tall and lanky goalie at 6-foot-3, 192 pounds. A highly coveted free agent back in 2009, Gustavsson signed with Toronto, where for the last three seasons, he toiled in the Maple Leaf cesspool.
An address change to the Motor City could be all he needs to elevate his game.
A butterfly goalie, his large frame covers most of the net, and hes extremely athletic for his size. Out of all of Sundays signings, this could have the greatest long-term impact because Gustavsson has enormous potential and will be playing for a high-quality team.
Many in the Detroit organization believe that Jimmy Howard is a much better goaltender when hes pushed, and Gustavsson has the talent to compete with Howard for significant playing time.
If the Red Wings are able to land Parise andor Suter on Monday, when its expected theyll announce where theyve decided to sign, the Wings will obviously be overjoyed with their free-agent signings.
Its hard to imagine Suter not being a Predator or Red Wing based on Sundays scuttlebutt. Parises situation appears to be more muddled.
Whatever happens will dictate if Detroit has to employ an alternative plan, going after a Matt Carle andor Alexander Semin.
Anyway you look at it, the circus hasnt left town.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
Winger Zach Parise has a once-in-a lifetime chance to get maximum dollars in unrestricted free agency.
He can write his own ticket. If he wants giant dollars up front in his new deal -- via a two-stage signing bonus for, say, $24 million -- he will get giant dollars up front.
That is why the New Jersey Devils failed to keep him off the market. As the Noon EDT July deadline neared...
Today is day 3 of the Zach Parise hostage crisis.
The common tone right now amongst some people is " he deserves as much time as possible, he is making the biggest decision of his life..."
Our initial reaction was this:
We just wanted to say **** you, Zach, make a decision on where you are going to sign your 100 million...
Pat Leonard at the Daily News asked Zach Parise's agent if his client has still ruled out the Blueshirts completely or simply was trying to avoid discussing clubs other than the New Jersey Devils, who own his rights until noon on Sunday..."Zach's keeping all of his options open," said Wade Arnot...and the Rangers are back in!...if Rangers are going to make big splash...
Zach Parise has had us all waiting and he will continue to make us do so, at least for another day. Parise told reporters outside of Newport Sports Agency in Mississauga, where he and his agent, Wade Arnott, have been huddled up for the last two days, that he has not come to a conclusion as to where he wants to play and he needs more time.
He would not tell reporters which teams...
If the reports are accurate and they're coming from reputable sources then Predators free agent defenseman Ryan Suter could receive a contract that would pay him 14 million in each of the next two seasons, a number that would be just 400,000 under the maximum allowed under the NHL's salary cap and which also could make him the highest-paid player in the NHL next season...
The NHL's free agent frenzy has rolled on as usual this summer. Some 78 new contracts had been handed out in the first three days since the signing period began on July 1, and the biggest deals have not even gone down with Zach Parise and Ryan Suter still weighing multiple offers higher than the GNPs of some small countries. On the surface, it's business as usual in the NHL...
No fireworks for Sabres fans on Canada Day... Yet.
The Zach Parise and Ryan Suter sweepstakes will rage on deep into Sunday night, Monday morning.
Phase 1 of the "free agent frenzy" saw third and fourth liners, and, back up goalies switch teams.
The creme de le creme still remain. Nash, Ryan, Malone, Parentau are still in play.
Caveat: Just because you are...
Twitter was about to explode around 4:30 on Monday afternoon with the imminent news of a statement by Zach Parise in several minutes. Parise waited until roughly 5:00 PM eastern time to announce that, there would essentially be no announcement, as noted by TSN's Mark Masters. Masters went on to report that Parise did not feel pressure to make a choice and that he is still deciding...
At PredneckNation.com we have put together some of the latest links to get you up to date on the Ryan Suter and Zach Parise sweepstakes…
The Associated Press - Ryan Suter’s agent doesn’t expect a quick decision
ESPN News Service - Ryan Suter, Zach Parise field offers
Sporting News - Zach Parise and Ryan Suter: Who, when and for how much?
Bleacher Report - 2012 NHL Free...
NHL frenzy is about to begin as the free-agent market is set to open today at noon ET. There are several big names that could find new homes.
The salary cap is set for $70.2 million.
New Jersey Devils captain Zach Parise and Nashville Predators defenseman Ryan Suter are the top names appearing to be ready to listen to offers, but a new player has jumped into the mix after New...
Neil Sheehy on Ryan Suter: There will be no decision tonight and there is no timetable for his contract signing at this time (cond) #mnwild— Michael Russo (@Russostrib) July 2, 2012
(cond Sheehy): “Ryan is considering his opportunities and is taking the necessary time to give each proper consideration.” #mnwild— Michael Russo (@Russostrib) July 2, 2012
There are big names floating around already this summer. And with free agency beginning today, I wouldn't mind some of them becoming a member of the blue and gold.
If the Sabres could land someone like Zach Parise, or make a move to acquire Bobby Ryan, that would be great. I don't expect that Buffalo will, so I've come up with a few players that could benefit the Sabres...
Congrats to former Sabre spiritual leader, Paul Gaustad.
The predators signed Gaustad to a new four year, $13 million contract on Saturday night, thus preventing the burly centreman from hitting the open UFA market.
So, Zach Parise was in Toronto last night. He'll meet with the half dozen teams that covet him beginning at Noon today. That is, IF he declares...
It's 90 degrees today and I am wondering like many other hockey fans - where is Zach Parise going to sign and for how much. Zach's decision isn't going to happen today according to Michael Russo. Also, it sounds like the Penguins are Zach's front-runner. If you're a Wild fan I am sure you're hoping that he changes his mind.