Free Agency Begins July 1

There has been alot of speculation that the Flyers will seek to sign a free agent, puck-moving defenseman when the free agent market opens on July 1.  This has been identified as their most pressing need.  The salary cap poses some difficulty here but the trading of Vinny Prospal and RJ Umberger and the retirement of Sami Kapanen has freed up some salary money that should allow the Flyers to go after one good free agent.  The defensemen most often mentioned as possibly Philadelphia-bound are San Jose’s Brian Campbell (whom the Flyers tried to acquire at the trade deadline from Buffalo), Ottawa’s Wade Redden, and Montreal’s Mark Streit.  Redden may be too expensive and Campbell has several other teams after him, including the division rival Rangers (which may be all the more reason for the Flyers to go after him). 

Mark Streit may be the best value here.  He is a solid defenseman whose price tag would be lower than Redden’s or Campbell’s.  Another interesting factor to consider is that he is from Switzerland as is the Flyers’ first round draft pick in last week’s draft, Luca Sbisa.   Would the Flyers sign Streit with an eye toward him mentoring Sbisa a few years from now?  If the Flyers were to sign the less-costly Streit, this could allow them to pick up another good value free agent, perhaps a forward – there are several good ones that will be unrestricted free agents on July 1.  Below is my list of UFAs the Flyers may want to consider, beginning with defensemen.  Their ages, height and weight, and stats from last year (games played-goals-assists-points-salary) are also listed:

Wade Redden D (30) 6’2 209; 80-6-32-38; $6,500,000 (Ottawa)

Brian Campbell D (29) 6’0 191; 83-8-54-62; $1,750,000 (San Jose)

Mark Streit D (29) 6’0 197; 81-13-49-62; $600,000 (Montreal)

Sean Avery C (27) 5’10 195; 57-15-18-33; $1,900,000 (NY Rangers)

Josef Vasicek C (26) 6’5 214; 81-16-19-35; $750,000 (NY Islanders)

Ryan Malone LW (27) 6’4 224; 77-27-24-51; $1,450,000 (Pittsburgh)

Antti Miettinen LW (26) 6’0 190; 69-15-19-34; $885,000 (Dallas)

Radim Vrbata RW (26) 6’1 190; 76-27-29-56; $1,225,000 (Phoenix)

Teemu Selanne RW (37) 6’0 204; 26-12-11-23; $1,500,000 (Anaheim)

Streit, Malone, and Vrbata would be my top choices to go after considering value, production, and intangibles.   It should be an interesting free agency period.

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3 Responses to “Free Agency Begins July 1”

  1. i gotta put my money on Mark Streit – mainly because i dont have much money and hes the cheapest one on the list – plus the other Duffy likes him too

  2. I think Streit is the guy to go for. Even though Campbell is friends with Briere, Biron does not like him saying that he doesn’t take the game serious. If the Flyers signed Campbell, he could become a “cancer” to a hard-working team. I would like to see Malone in orange and black, he’d have Flyers fans saying R.J. who? Let’s go Flyers!!!!

  3. MisterTschopp Says:

    I would love Campbell, but that might not happen. A stronger possiblilty would be Streit and that does leave cap room for another scoring forward. I like Malone and Vrbata on the list. We’ll see!

    IN HOMER WE TRUST!

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