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free agency

Top remaining NHL unrestricted free agents include Staal, Dubnyk, Vatanen

Demers, McElhinney also available

NHL.com @NHLdotcom

The NHL free agent signing period began July 28. NHL.com takes a closer look at the top remaining unrestricted free agents (listed in alphabetical order).

Jason Demers, D, Arizona Coyotes

The 33-year-old had four assists and averaged 17:14 of ice time in 41 games. Demers has scored 214 points (45 goals, 169 assists) in 699 regular-season games with the Coyotes, Florida Panthers, Dallas Stars and San Jose Sharks, and could provide a team with depth at defenseman.

Devan Dubnyk, G, Colorado Avalanche

Dubnyk has struggled in each of the past two seasons, going a combined 18-26-4 with a 3.29 goals-against average, an .892 save percentage and two shutouts in 52 games (46 starts). But for five straight seasons (2014-19), Dubnyk won at least 31 games and never had a GAA higher than 2.54 or a save percentage lower than .913. The 35-year-old is 253-206-54 with a 2.61 GAA, a .914 save percentage and 33 shutouts in 542 regular-season games (514 starts) for the Avalanche, Sharks, Minnesota Wild, Coyotes, Nashville Predators and Edmonton Oilers.

Curtis McElhinney, G, Tampa Bay Lightning

McElhinney has proven he can be a veteran backup for a team in need. The 38-year-old was 4-6-2 with a 3.09 GAA, an .875 save percentage and one shutout in 12 regular-season games. He has won the Stanley Cup each of the past two seasons as Andrei Vasilevskiy's backup. McElhinney is 94-95-20 with a 2.83 GAA, a .907 save percentage and 12 shutouts in 249 regular-season games (198 starts) with the Lightning, Carolina Hurricanes, Toronto Maple Leafs, Columbus Blue Jackets, Coyotes, Senators, Anaheim Ducks and Calgary Flames.

James Neal, F, Edmonton Oilers

The 33-year-old left wing had the final two seasons of his five-year contract bought out by the Oilers. Neal scored 10 points (five goals, five assists) in 29 games and did not have a point in two playoff games. He has scored 555 points (294 goals, 261 assists) in 850 regular-season games with the Stars, Pittsburgh Penguins, Predators, Vegas Golden Knights, Flames and Oilers, and has scored at least 20 goals 10 times in his 13 NHL seasons.

Eric Staal, F, Montreal Canadiens

The 36-year-old center scored 13 points (five goals, eight assists) in 53 games with the Canadiens and Sabres last season, and eight points (two goals, six assists) in 21 playoff games with Montreal. He has scored 1,034 points (441 goals, 593 assists) in 1,293 regular-season games with the Canadiens, Buffalo Sabres, Wild, New York Rangers and Hurricanes. Staal, who can also play wing, has 83 games of NHL playoff experience and won the Stanley Cup with Carolina in 2006.

Sami Vatanen, D, Dallas Stars

The 30-year-old scored six points (two goals, four assists) in 39 games with the Stars and Devils last season. Though his production has declined, Vatanen is a steady defenseman who can also run the power play if needed. He has scored 200 points (47 goals, 153 assists) in 473 regular-season games with the Stars, Devils and Ducks, including 86 on the power play.

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