With Tuesday’s free-agency frenzy an absolute frantic avalanche of signings, Day 2 was much more subdued by comparison. The opening of the market was highlighted by some marquee players changing teams, some inked to modest, shrewd deals that can make an impact for years to come, with others agreeing to the sort of ulcer-inducing contracts that may come back to haunt the general manager responsible for doling out the cash.
Because there was such a scramble on Tuesday, with names like Paul Stastny, Jarome Iginla, Matt Niskanen and Thomas Vanek flying around, Wednesday left little by way of starpower for the teams still looking to add depth to their rosters.
After striking out on Tuesday, the Isles inked both Nikolai Kulemin and Mikhail Grabovski to a pair of four-year deals. Veteran center Olli Jokinen signed with the Nashville Predators. Other than that, there were a few depth players, but no one particularly noteworthy.
Yet, teams still have holes to address and there are plenty of unrestricted free agents in need of jobs. It’s a much more modest market now, but there are still a few veteran players out there up for grabs.
Future Hall of Fame goaltender Martin Brodeur, who has spent his entire career as a New Jersey Devil, headlines the class of free agents still searching for new teams. The 42-year-old's availability was a subject of significant intrigue, given that he was finally cutting ties with the organization that drafted him back in 1990.
Minnesota, Pittsburgh and Toronto were floated as possible landing spots for the three-time Stanley Cup champion, but the Penguins signed backup Thomas Greiss, the Maple Leafs opted (at least for now) not to trade James Reimer and the Wild curiously stood pat despite their uncertainty in net.
Brodeur is currently evaluating a few different options, but is content to wait longer than originally anticipated if the right fit does not present itself, a source told ESPN.com.
How long exactly? It might behoove Brodeur to wait until training camp, when an untimely injury could prompt a team to seek immediate help. And maybe there is still a chance (albeit very slim, we would think) that he goes back to New Jersey. After all, Scott Clemmensen was signed to a one-year, two-way contract, and who knows how Keith Kinkaid will fare as backup to Cory Schneider?
Elsewhere, there are still some quality players to sign. Despite the “behavioral issues” that earned him a buyout from the Arizona Coyotes, Mike Ribeiro can add depth at center for a team looking for some immediate help. Veteran center Derek Roy could also be a solid pickup for a team with a void down the middle.
Things get a bit thinner on defense. No surprise, really, since this free-agent class of defensemen was not regarded as very strong. With the likes of Niskanen, Anton Stralman and Dan Boyle snatched up on Tuesday, the remaining blueliners offer pretty slim pickings.