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NHL Free Agency 2011

Preds sign Hillen to one-year deal

Monday, 08.08.2011 / 5:23 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011

NHL.com

The Nashville Predators made a depth signing Monday as they agreed to terms with defenseman Jack Hillen on a one-year, two-way deal.

After spending four years at Colorado College, Hillen played his first three professional seasons with the New York Islanders. He set career highs last season in goals (4) and points (22) while tying a personal best in assists (18). The 5-10, 190-pound blueliner also ranked second on the Isles with 137 blocked shots in 64 games.
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Blues add defenseman Syvret

Monday, 08.08.2011 / 1:34 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011

NHL.com

The St. Louis Blues added depth on defense Monday by signing Danny Syvret to a one-year contract.

Syvret, 26, played in 10 NHL games combined with the Flyers and Ducks last season, registering 1 goal and 2 points. He spent most of the season with the AHL's Syracuse Crunch and Adirondack Phantoms, finishing with 10 goals and 40 points in 59 games.

The 5-foot-11, 203-pound defenseman, a third-round pick by Edmonton in the 2005 Entry Draft, has appeared in 59 NHL games between the Oilers, Flyers and Ducks, compiling 3 goals and 7 points along with 30 penalty minutes.
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Report: Selanne won't decide until September

Friday, 08.05.2011 / 3:35 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011

NHL.com

It looks like the Anaheim Ducks will have to wait until next month to see if Teemu Selanne will play for them this season. Selanne reportedly has told a newspaper in his native Finland that he plans to wait until September to make a decision on whether to return for his 20th NHL season. 

The Ducks star had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee in June and wants to let the knee heal before announcing his plans, according to Ilta-Sanomat, the second-largest newspaper in Finland. Selanne, who also had reconstructive knee surgery during the 2004-05 work stoppage, has been working out in Finland since the surgery. He is an unrestricted free agent, but has indicated that the Ducks are the only team he would play with.

Selanne, who turned 41 on July 3, finished 2010-11 with 31 goals and 80 points in 73 regular-season games, his most productive season since 2006-07. He joined Gordie Howe and Johnny Bucyk as the only players in NHL history to average more than a point a game for a full season after turning 40.
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Coyotes sign vet O'Sullivan to two-way deal

Friday, 08.05.2011 / 12:29 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011

NHL.com

The Phoenix Coyotes added forward depth Friday with the signing of six-season veteran Patrick O'Sullivan to a one-year, two-way contract.

O'Sullivan split the 2010-11 campaign between the Carolina and Minnesota organizations, recording 2 goals and 8 points in 31 combined games between the Hurricanes and Wild. He also helped lead the Houston Aeros to the AHL Calder Cup Finals by posting 4 goals and a team-best 18 points in 24 playoff games. He recorded 19 goals and 48 points in 36 regular-season contests with Houston.

In parts of six NHL seasons with the Kings, Oilers, Hurricanes and Wild, the 6-foot, 190-pound O'Sullivan has recorded 56 goals and 157 points in 311 games. O’Sullivan established career highs in goals (22), assists (31), points (53) and games (82) during the 2007-08 season with Los Angeles.
 
O'Sullivan was originally drafted by Minnesota in the second round (No. 56) of the 2003 Entry Draft.
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Weber, Poile happy to have an agreement done

Wednesday, 08.03.2011 / 7:50 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

While both parties said reaching arbitration wasn't ideal, Nashville Predators general manager David Poile and captain Shea Weber said Wednesday their relationship remains sound and more work will be done to keep the Norris Trophy runner-up in Tennessee for a long time.

Weber was awarded a one-year, $7.5 million contract for the 2011-12 season after a hearing Tuesday in Toronto. He will be a restricted free agent again next summer if the two sides don't agree to a deal, but the Predators won't be able to ask for salary arbitration and other teams would be eligible to negotiate an offer sheet with him starting July 1, 2012.

"We negotiated long and hard for many, many meetings. We talked from a one-year contract to a longer-term contract," Poile said. "As they say, 'Why didn't you get it done?' Well, we just couldn't quite agree on the term, the length or the structure. We just didn't get it done. From our standpoint, that is a little disappointing. We would certainly like the certainty of our captain signed to a long-term contract, but that's not to say he's not going to. It offers us a challenge. It certainly keeps me and the rest of our organization focused with our eye on the ball and what we have to do."
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What Weber deal means for Preds, other blueliners

Wednesday, 08.03.2011 / 4:39 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

Is it possible that Shea Weber and the Nashville Predators held the NHL's other restricted free agent defensemen hostage this summer?

We'll find out soon because with the one-year, $7.5 million contract awarded to Weber through arbitration now official, Los Angeles' Drew Doughty, Toronto's Luke Schenn and Winnipeg's Zach Bogosian all could fall in line with new contracts in the coming days or weeks.

Now, Weber isn't exactly the ideal comparable to any of the aforementioned blueliners for several reasons: He's 26 years old; he's played five full seasons in the NHL; he had his case settled through arbitration; he is on his third NHL contract. Doughty, Schenn and Bogosian are each 21 and coming off their three-year entry-level contracts. 
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Colin White inks deal with Sharks

Wednesday, 08.03.2011 / 3:39 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011

NHL.com

Colin White didn't stay an unrestricted free agent for long. The ex-Devils defenseman signed a one-year contract worth a reported $1 million with the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday.

White was waived by the Devils on Monday and after clearing Tuesday, the team bought out the remaining one year and $3 million left on his contract, making him an unrestricted free agent. White will now earn $1 million from the Sharks and $1 million from the Devils this season. He will also be paid $1 million by the Devils next season.
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Predators, Weber enter into arbitration

Tuesday, 08.02.2011 / 10:21 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

The Nashville Predators could not reach an agreement on a new contract with captain Shea Weber prior to their scheduled club-elected arbitration hearing Tuesday, so now it will be up to an independent arbiter to rule on how much the restricted free-agent defenseman is worth.

After hearing 90-minute cases from each side Tuesday morning, the arbiter has 48 hours to render his decision.

Weber reportedly told the arbiter he was seeking a one-year contract worth $8.5 million. The Predators reportedly countered by asking for a $4.75 million award.
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Comeau avoids arbitration, signs deal with Isles

Tuesday, 08.02.2011 / 9:14 PM / NHL Free Agency 2011
Blake Comeau and the New York Islanders avoided going through the arbitration hearing process by agreeing to terms on a one-year contract Tuesday night reportedly worth $2.5 million. Comeau's arbitration hearing was scheduled for Thursday in Toronto.

Comeau, 25, established career highs in goals (24), assists (22) and points (46) last season. He was fourth on the Islanders in goals and fifth in points.

Comeau made his NHL debut in 2006-07, appearing in only three games. He bounced between the Islanders and the AHL's Bridgeport Sound Tigers over the next two seasons, but he played the majority of his games with the NHL club, registering 40 points over 104 games.
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Final countdown on Weber arbitration hearing

Monday, 08.01.2011 / 11:42 AM / NHL Free Agency 2011

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

Shea Weber and the Nashville Predators are down to the final hours of negotiating before the doors to their scheduled arbitration hearing swing open and the two sides give way to a third-party ruling on what the team captain and star defenseman is worth for the 2011-12 season.

Weber is scheduled for his club-elected arbitration hearing in Toronto at 9 a.m. Tuesday.

If Weber and the Predators can't come to an agreement on a new contract, he will be the first NHL player to go through the arbitration hearing process this summer. Arbitration hearings are notorious for being contentious as the two sides argue against one another for what they feel is the proper salary for the player before the independent arbiter ultimately awards the new contract.

In Weber's case, it could be a one- or two-year contract with a significant raise from the $4.5 million he earned last season. By filing for club-elected arbitration, the Predators prevented other teams from signing Weber to an offer sheet this summer but also forfeited their rights to walk away from the arbiter's ruling.
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