It’s 24 hours into NHL free agency — do you know where your top free agents are?
Many are still available.
Even after the initial frenzy of deals, less lucrative than normal because of a flat salary cap defenseman Alex Pietrangelo and forwards Taylor Hall, Mike Hoffman and Tyler Toffoli have yet to sign new contracts as of mid-Saturday.
It’s the first time since Zach Parise and Ryan Suter in 2012 that some of the cream of the crop free agents didn’t sign on the first day they could.
Even former Bruins defenseman Torey Krug inked his $45.5 million, seven-year deal with St. Louis on Friday night. Krug was the first domino to fall among the big-name players who aren’t goaltenders and all but closed the door on Pietrangelo remaining with the Blues after helping them win the Stanley Cup in 2019.
With the big fish still out there, teams took care of some smaller but still meaningful contracts Saturday. Detroit signed goaltender Thomas Greiss to a $7.2 million, two-year contract, Nashville finalized a $3 million, two-year deal with forward Nick Cousins and Boston added big winger Craig Smith for $9.3 million over three years.
The Bruins are an intriguing team in free agency, after general manager Don Sweeney postponed his planned news conference to Saturday afternoon. That led to plenty of speculation Boston was working on something big — Hall, maybe, or perhaps defenseman T.J. Brodie, who signed with rival Toronto on Friday night for four years and $20 million.
The Vegas Golden Knights are also worth watching on the Pietrangelo front after trading center Paul Stastny to clear cap space. GM Kelly McCrimmon wouldn’t answer a question about the Golden Knights’ interest in Pietrangelo, citing that he wasn’t on their roster.
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