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21 June 2007

Walker, Rivet and Horton off the market, Emery to have surgery...

The Florida Panthers have re-signed restricted free-agent forward Nathan Horton.

The deal will pay out a total of $24 million to the 22-year old over 6 seasons.

The signing, per TSN, officially ends all speculation that Horton will be dealt at tomorrow's NHL Entry Draft in Columbus.

Horton had a spectacular season at such a young age, ammasing 31 goals and putting up 31 assists while appearing in all 82 games.

A star on the rise, Horton's season was awesome on the scoresheet, but some off-ice rumours a few months before the deadline, which consisted of Horton's unhappiness in the Sunshine State and his desire to be dealt to a contender, prompted speculation he would be dealt at the trade deadline (didn't happen) or at the draft.

-Craig Rivet really like the weather in Western California, and he's going to be there for another 4 seasons.

The Sharks officially signed their hard-hitting defenceman to a 4-year $14 million contract, a potential UFA, Rivet fit in well with the Sharks and broke out in the playoffs as the team's leading defenceman.

Rivet was traded to San Jose on the eve of the trade deadline, in exchange for Josh Gorges and the Shark's 1st round draft choice (23rd overall)

That comes out to about $2.5 million per season.

The 33-year old was eligible for UFA status on July 1st; he had a decent season in Carolina, but nothing compared to his old Nashville days, scoring 21 goals and adding 31 helpers in 81 games.

"Keeping Scott in Carolina was one of our top priorities this off-season," Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford said in a statement. "He brings skill and grit to our forward lines and he has become one of our team's leaders on and off the ice."

"It was one of the best experiences that I had in renegotiating. I felt really wanted," Walker said. "I like my role, but I also like the way the team is set up for the future, and I think we have a chance to win."

-And to top this transaction segment off, goaltender Ray Emery will undergo surgery for his wrist, which he hurt in November and re-aggravated in the playoffs.
He is not expected to miss the beginning of the regular-season, TSN says he will be out 2-3 months.

Emery, a restricted free-agent, made 925K last year and will likely seek a substantial raise from new Sens GM Bryan Murray, Emery's agent was quoted on TSN's Off the Record with Michael Landsberg that his client might receive an offer sheet soon, and that many teams would be interested in doing so, especially 2-3 teams that he obviously didn't name.


6 fanatics have replied:

kazmojo said...

I don't think Horton was a UFA come July 1, so the Habs wouldn't have had much of a shot to sign him outright anyway.

Still, a big, strong, goal-scoring right hander would fit in real nice. And it's still possible this could be a prelude to a draft day deal. $4M/yr would definitely fit into the Habs' salary cap picture. They could still afford to snag Rafalski, as well as sign Plekanec and Ryder.

Road Apples said...

damn. i've always harbored (false) hope that someday the Sabres would deal for Horton - I love his game.

The Ghost said...

I like Horton too. I think he might benefit from coming to a "hockey town."

4m a year, makes you wonder what Roy and Vanek will command?

Road Apples said...

agreed. i'm almost always defending Regier against his surprising legion of critics but his usual patient behind-the-scenes manner is hurting him right now, as the market value for exactly those 2 guys is skyrocketing. ugh.

speaking of player movement, i wonder what the trade market will be like today...


The Ghost said...

I have no reason to expect this, but I just feel that Buffalo is actually going to be very active today.

Road Apples said...

i hope you're right. it becomes difficult to separate the fan from objective observer, esp. in light of some of the Kane rumours.

Without bothering to address whether they could be real or not, I could understand the move - only conceivable scenario involves Max - in terms of this: it may enable the team to more ably sign one (both?) of the co-captains if they're able to shed the USD$3.33 million from the salary cap. Although when you factor in Kane's salary and rookie bonus you'd be talking roughly $2 mil against the cap. Not that much savings.

just thinking aloud. But I wouldn't be surprised at Buffalo activity either, or even if nothing happens we hear later on that they were aggressively making offers.


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