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Posted On Tuesday, 07.10.2012 / 8:18 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Stars GM expects Morrow to be on team

Dallas Stars general manager Joe Nieuwendyk said Tuesday he expects captain Brenden Morrow to be with the team next season.

Morrow reportedly has become a trade target of the St. Louis Blues, among other teams.

Nieuwendyk addressed those rumors to the Dallas Morning News.

"We had a good talk the other day, and I told him I very much believe there’s a place for him on this team," Nieuwendyk told the newspaper. "I told him I fully expect him to be out there on the power play in front of the net where he’s always been."

The St. Louis Post Dispatch earlier reported the Blues had interest in Morrow for a possible trade. The newspaper mentioned the New York Rangers, San Jose Sharks and Los Angeles Kings as other teams that could be interested.

Morrow said he plans to be with the Stars next season.

"You asked me: Do I want to be a Dallas Star, and the answer is definitely yes," Morrow said. "If they want to trade me or they indicate to me that they don’t want me, then obviously I don’t want to be there or stand in their way. But, until they say that they want to trade me or ask me to waive my no-trade clause, then I’m excited to be on the team and I’m ready to get going next season."

Morrow, 34 in January, has one year remaining on his contract. The forward was limited by injuries to 57 games last season -- he had 11 goals and 15 assists. In 2010-11, he scored 33 goals playing all 82 games.

"I feel good where we are right now, but I also know things change," Morrow said. "Right now, I’m just focused on me and my health. I figure if I take care of that, everything else will work out fine."

The Stars added free-agent forwards Ray Whitney and Jaromir Jagr and traded for Derek Roy this summer. They have traded away forwards Mike Ribeiro and Steve Ott.

The Dallas Morning News reported Wednesday that Roy needs shoulder surgery and could be sidelined until November.

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Posted On Tuesday, 07.10.2012 / 4:18 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Veteran forward Barch signs with Devils

The New Jersey Devils have agreed on a contract with free-agent forward Krystofer Barch. The (Bergen) Record is reporting it's a two-year deal worth $750,000 annually.

A six-year NHL veteran, Barch split last season between the Dallas Stars and Florida Panthers, posting two goals, five points and 114 penalty minutes in 51 games.

Signed as an undrafted free agent by the Stars on July 18, 2006, the 32-year-old has career totals of 12 goals, 31 points and 669 PIMs in 304 games.

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Posted On Tuesday, 07.10.2012 / 1:10 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Langenbrunner returns to Blues on one-year deal

The St. Louis Blues have re-signed forward Jamie Langenbrunner to a one-year deal.

Langenbrunner will turn 37 this month. Last season, his first with the Blues, he had six goals and 18 assists in 70 games.

"We are excited that Jamie has agreed to stay in St. Louis," Blues general manager Doug Armstrong said. "His professionalism and leadership both on and off the ice are invaluable assets for our club."

Langenbrunner has won two Stanley Cups during his 16 NHL seasons -- in 1999 with the Dallas Stars and in 2003 with the New Jersey Devils.

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Posted On Tuesday, 07.10.2012 / 12:57 PM

NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Could Stars' Morrow be trade candidate?

St. Louis Blues GM Doug Armstrong has admitted to being active in trade discussions, and one of his targets could be Dallas Stars captain Brenden Morrow.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch is reporting the Blues could be one of a few teams interested in Morrow, who the Stars could make available for the right price.

Morrow, 33, had the worst statistical season of his career in 2011-12, with 11 goals and 15 assists while playing 57 games due to neck and back issues. It's a big slide from 2010-11, when he had a career-best 33 goals.

In 806 NHL games, all with the Stars, Morrow has 237 goals (78 on the power play) and 280 assists, with seven 20-goal seasons and two 30-goal seasons. However, he's played at least 70 games just four times in the past seven seasons.

The Stars this summer have added free-agent forwards Jaromir Jagr and Ray Whitney, and with Morrow entering the last season of his contract, Dallas could be looking at moving him.

Armstrong and Blues coach Ken Hitchcock know Morrow well. Armstrong worked in the Stars' front office when Morrow was drafted and was general manager when the team named him captain in 2006. Hitchcock was Morrow's coach in his first three NHL seasons.

However, the newspaper reports the Blues aren't the only team that could be interested in Morrow, naming the Rangers, Sharks and Kings as other possible suitors.

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Posted On Tuesday, 07.10.2012 / 9:39 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Lightning sign Purcell to three-year extension

The Tampa Bay Lightning announced Tuesday the club has signed right wing Teddy Purcell to a three-year contract extension. Financial terms of the deal, which runs through the 2015-16 season, were not released.

Purcell was entering the last season of a two-year contract and would have been an unrestricted free agent on July 1, 2013.

Purcell set career highs last season in goals (24), assists (41) and points (65) while playing 81 games for the second straight season. He led the team with a plus-9 rating, was second in assists and power-play goals (eight), and third in goals and points.

He had an 11-game point streak from Feb. 21-March 8, and played for Canada at the 2012 IIHF World Championship, finishing with two points in eight games.

"I felt like the past two seasons I’ve really played to my strengths, which have helped me become a full-time NHL player with Tampa Bay," Purcell told the Lightning's website. "I really don’t think there is a better fit for me and I still believe I can get better every day, so I’m looking forward to remaining with the Lightning and taking my game another step."

After playing parts of three seasons with the Los Angeles Kings, Purcell joined the Lightning on March 3, 2010 in a trade and quickly earned a full-time NHL job. In 181 games over the past three seasons with the Lightning, Purcell has 44 goals and 82 assists.

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Posted On Tuesday, 07.10.2012 / 9:17 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Rangers sign veteran Halpern to one-year deal

The New York Rangers have signed veteran center Jeff Halpern to a one-year, $700,000 contract.

Halpern, 36, had four goals and 12 assists in 69 games with the Washington Capitals last season. He was second among the team's forwards in shorthanded ice time per game at 1:44

In 12 NHL seasons with the Capitals, Stars, Lightning, Kings and Canadiens, Halpern has 146 goals and 212 assists in 861 games.

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Posted On Monday, 07.09.2012 / 6:30 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Center Hanson signs with Bruins

Free agent center Christian Hanson signed a one-year, two-way contract with the Boston Bruins, the team announced Monday.

The contract is worth $600,000 at the NHL level and $105,000 at the AHL level.

Hanson, 26, played last season for the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League after signing with the Washington Capitals as a free agent. He had 10 goals, 11 assists and 42 penalty minutes in 52 games.

He played the prior season with the Toronto Marlies of the AHL. In 58 games, he scored 13 goals with 21 assists and 51 penalty minutes.

In 42 NHL games over three seasons -- all with the Toronto Maple Leafs -- he has three goals, six assists and 22 penalty minutes. He most recently played during the 2010-11 season.

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Posted On Monday, 07.09.2012 / 1:55 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Canucks re-sign Raymond

The Vancouver Canucks on Monday re-signed forward Mason Raymond, avoiding an arbitration hearing. Terms of the deal were not released, but TSN is reporting it's a one-year, $2.275 million contract.

The 26-year-old left wing had 10 goals and 10 assists in 55 regular-season games. He missed the first two months of the season recovering from a broken vertebrae suffered in the 2011 Stanley Cup Final.

A 2005 second-round pick of the Canucks, Raymond has 70 goals and 86 assists in 328 regular-season games, and 16 points in 51 playoff games.

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Posted On Monday, 07.09.2012 / 11:34 AM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Doan ready to start figuring out his future

After putting his future on hold for more than a week, longtime Phoenix Coyotes captain Shane Doan is ready to figure out where he wants to play next season and beyond.

Doan's agent, Terry Bross, told the Arizona Republic that 11 teams have expressed an interest in signing Doan, an unrestricted free agent whose priority has always been to return to the Coyotes. However, Doan wanted to wait until at least Monday to start his negotiation process because that is when he hopes to gain more clarity on the situation surrounding Greg Jamison's bid to buy the Coyotes.

Jamison has been approved by the NHL. A 20-year lease agreement between the City of Glendale and Jamison was approved in a 4-2 vote by the city council on June 8, and subsequently held up in Maricopa County Superior Court by Judge Dean Fink 20 days later. However, two Glendale residents have been trying to gather signatures in an attempt to push the lease agreement onto the ballot in November.

According to the Arizona Republic, it is not clear if the required number of signatures has been gathered or if the residents will submit them to the city by Monday, which is 30 days from the date that the lease agreement passed. The Arizona Republic also reported that the organizers of the referendum say paperwork on the ordinance wasn't available until June 15, so they should have an extra week to gather signatures.

Regardless, Doan is ready to get serious about signing a new contract either with the Coyotes or one of the other teams interested. Bross told the Arizona Republic that he plans to speak with Phoenix general manager Don Maloney on Monday.

"I would think if they don't have the signatures and it looks like the Jamison thing is going to go (through), then Don and I would get a little more serious in our dialogue about a new contract," Bross said. "If they do have the signatures or something throws a wrench in it and they say we're looking at two months before we can make a decision, I think we have to listen to some other offers."

Bross added that nothing is imminent right now, but if Doan is going to explore his options outside of the Coyotes, "there are two or three that he'd take a long hard look at, and it'd break his heart to do so."

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Posted On Friday, 07.06.2012 / 7:06 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Free Agency 2012 blog

Canadiens re-sign Eller

The Montreal Canadiens on Friday signed restricted free-agent forward Lars Eller to a new two-year contract. Financial terms of the deal were not released.

Eller, 23, set personal bests last season in goals (16), assists (12), points (28) and games played (79). He also had two power-play goals, the first two shorthanded goals of his NHL career and two game-winning goals.

The highlight of his season was four-goal game Jan. 4 against Winnipeg. It was the first time a Canadiens player had four goals in a game since 2006.

Originally chosen by the St. Louis Blues with the 13th pick of the 2007 NHL Draft, Eller came to Montreal in 2010 as part of the trade that sent goalie Jaroslav Halak to St. Louis.

In 163 NHL games with the Blues and Canadiens, Eller has 25 goals and 22 assists.

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He seemed to thrive on his own and didn't really need any push from me. I certainly don't want to get in the way of the coaches. You see how that goes sometimes. I never really worried about it and just enjoyed the ride.

— David Ekblad on his son's [Aaron Ekblad] journey to the NHL, signing with the Florida Panthers