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Updates on 3 Notable NHL UFA’s Not Named Mike Hoffman

With the UFA frenzy simmering each day, there are still several interesting names that could make an impact for an NHL franchise.

The hockey world has steadily steered itself into cruise control after a uncertain offseason started a few weeks ago. Even though the UFA situation is no longer a frenzy, there are still some very good players available. Among them is Mike Hoffman. There’s been enough speculation on where the ‘top’ remaining UFA will go, so there’s not much need to rehash that here, other than to say Hoffman is willing to be patient.

Related: Blues Seemingly Confirm Interest in NHL UFA Forward Mike Hoffman

What about the rest of the group? It’s about time we look at a free agents not named Hoffman and below you can find the latest on three notable NHLers that should find a new home before next season gets under way.

Sami Vatanen

The 29-year-old Finn spent most of the last two seasons with the New Jersey Devils, but was traded to the Carolina Hurricanes at the 2020 deadline. Vatanen was injured at the time of the trade, but returned for seven Hurricane playoff games, adding three assists.

The right-handed, agile defender was most recently signed on a four-year contract with the Anaheim Ducks worth $4.875M AAV. Vatanen’s name has been connected to several teams but the Florida Panthers and Calgary Flames are the most recent.

Erik Haula

Erik Haula is another 29-year-old native of Finland that is currently looking at options for his next contract. After two injury riddled seasons, Haula is looking to find his 2018 form when he tallied 29 goals and 26 assists (55) in 76 games for the Vegas Golden Knights.

Haula spent last season split between the Carolina Hurricanes and Florida Panthers where he still managed a half point per game pace with 12 goals and 12 assists in 48 games.

A healthy Haula could add provide some secondary scoring for a team looking to add some offensive depth. Haula’s last deal was for three years at an AAV of $2.75M. Most recently, Haula’s name has been attached to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Anthony Duclair

Duclair is one of the more interesting free agents still available. At 24 years of age, Duclair likely still has lots of upside. In fact, Duclair was having what would have been his best offensive season with 23 goals and 17 assists (40) in 66 games for the Ottawa Senators in 19/20. Prior to that, Duclair’s best NHL season was his sophomore year with the Arizona Coyotes where he managed 44 points (20G, 24A) in 81 games during the 15/16 season.

A contract for Duclair would likely not be exorbitant. Before last season, Duclair signed a one-year deal worth $1.65M. Given all this information, the natural question is why hasn’t Duclair re-signed with Ottawa?  Seems to make sense — a young player on a young team working to rebuild itself. Further, the Senators still have over $12M of available cap space.

Is Duclair asking for too big of a raise? Or does his situation have more to do with the fact the Duclair has been on five different NHL teams in his first six seasons?

Either way, things don’t seem to add up. Hopefully Duclair will get a chance to prove that he can be a productive player and a good teammate.

NEXT: Corey Perry Being Linked to Ottawa Senators in NHL Free Agency

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Michael Zack

    November 8, 2020 at 7:23 pm

    Duclair is locker room Cancer. Looks like Europe to me.

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