Kings Crowned Champions
Kings win the Stanley Cup on home ice for the first championship in franchise history. A brutal penalty taken by Steve Bernier as he ran Rob Scuderi face first into the glass that resulted in a five minute major and a game misconduct and two power play goals by the Kings set up the win.
Jonathan Quick was the obvious choice to win the Conn Smythe trophy as the MVP of the playoffs. Quick is also a nominee for the Vezina trophy this year as well. Quick has one year remaining on his contract that will pay him $1.8 million before he is eligible for unrestricted free agency.
The Devils have a difficult off season to look forward to. After losing in game six of a long playoffs there is plenty of uncertainty looking to next season. New Jersey has nine players headed towards the UFA market on July first including franchise corner stone Martin Brodeur and captain Zach Parise. Brodeur said he intends to return for another season and is not ready to retire. The Devils financial status has generated a lot of Parise leaving via free agency rumors, but is there any chance the Devils can not afford to resign Brodeur as well? Brodeur is not ready to retire and has proven he is very capable of playing at an elite level. Is there any possibility he could wear another teams jersey next year?
Other Devils players hitting the open market on Canada Day areAlexi Ponikarovsky, Ryan Carter, Cam Janssen, Steve Bernier, Stephen Gionta, Bryce Salvador, Peter Harrold, and Johan Hedberg.. Gionta and Salvador had very strong play in the post season and will attract considerable attention around the league.
Boston Bruins Signings
The Bruins resigned both Chris Kelly (four years $12 million) and Greg Campbell preventing both players from becoming free agents. With the singings it appears the bruins may be willing to let Brian Rolston go and may not sign Benoit Pouliot to a qualifying offer. Pouliot has already been in this situation previously in Montreal. Should the bruins not qualify him, he would become a UFA. He is an asset and if the bruins can not afford him, they may look to trade him before July first.
During the season there were some feverish trade rumors suggesting that James Van Riemsdyk was going to be traded to Toronto for Luke Schenn, but injuries to JVR squashed that trade/rumor. JVR is again in trade rumors, this time to Columbus in a deal for Rick Nash but again JVR is suffering an injury that may block the deal. Where there is smoke there is fire. It seems as JVR is on the block. The same can be said for Schenn in Toronto as the most recent Schenn rumors are with Edmonton for the Oilers first overall pick. What more would the Leafs need to add to make that deal happen, the fifth overall?
Elliotte Friedman touched on this rumor in his 30 thoughts post saying,
" There are rumblings that Toronto will offer Luke Schenn to Edmonton for a swap of first-rounders. No doubt Brian Burke would like to make a huge draft splash. He loves the big stage. And I do believe the Oilers like Schenn and have discussed his availability before. But I just can't see it happening for the first-overall selection. That's not enough. It'll be interesting, though, to see how many teams think Schenn will be better off outside Toronto. Sounds like the Maple Leafs are aware of that and, as a result, ask for a lot in return."
Is Patrick Kane on the trade block as well? Sabre Noise is suggesting that the Hawks are quietly shopping Kane as they have grown tired of his partying and have holes to fill including at center and in goal. The proposed deal would see Kane going to his home town in Buffalo in exchange for Derek Roy and a first round pick or a top prospect.
Heading to Free Agency
Nashville Predators confirmed that they will not pursue Alex Radulov, or Andrei Kostitsyn in the off season. The Anaheim Ducks also confirmed that they would not pursue forwards Jason Blake and Nick Hagman. These players may find it difficult to secure another NHL contract or one at the value they are seeking. The KHL or Europe may be the best option for these players. If you own any of these guys in a fantasy keeper league, sell, sell, sell!!!
Another player apparently heading to market is Islander P.A. Parenteau. After two successful seasons on the Island he will command a significant raise. Is he an example of a player who benefited from his situation as Anson Carter did playing with the Sedin's in Vancouver? Carter saw his fantasy value sky rocket playing with the Sedins and then plummet once he left. Perhaps if Parenteau signs elsewhere and is no longer playing with a player of John Tavares ability it is a great sell high opportunity for fantasy hockey owners.
Ducks GM Bob Murray confirmed that prospect Justin Schultz will test the free agent market this summer. If Schultz has informed the Ducks he is going to sign elsewhere (and it sounds like he has done exactly that) look for the Ducks to trade his rights by the NHL entry draft June 22.
Crosby has one year left on his contract before he becomes an unrestricted free agent. Crosby and the Penguins are in talks about a contract extension in the range of ten years at nine million per season. Obviously the big question is not is Sid worth it, but can he stay healthy? Committing so much cash and cap to a player that played nine games in a calendar year due to concussions is a frightening commitment. If you were a NHL GM, or Owner would you take the risk? If you own Crosby in a fantasy hockey league would you trade Crosby? If you have made a fantasy hockey Crosby trade I would love to read it in the comment section below!
For all you need to know about Sidney Crosby's contract read my favorite reporter Elliotte Friedmans article, Keeping Crosby is risky business for Penguins and his 30 thoughts. Best read in hockey!
FHC Prospect Report
The writers at FHC are working hard at our first prospect guide for the hard core fantasy hockey poolers. With deep prospect rankings, fantasy rankings, organizational rankings, individual bios on over 200 prospects and a look at the drafts up to 2015 it is a must read for a serious fantasy hockey league. Reserve your copy early here!
Subscribe to The Press Box
If you are a daily reader of FHC The Press Box, get a free subscription to be notified when each days post is published. Click the link here
By: Peter Harling
Follow me on Twitter: @pharling
The Press Box Home
Fantasy Hockey Coach Home