Free agency is a time generally reserved for welcoming new players into the fold, as the Oilers and Canucks did, or for being excited about the possibility of signing a true difference maker, as fans of the Flames and Leafs can be tonight.

Still, it’s also a time for departure, and each of the four cities in the Nation Network lost at least one player to another team today.


Adam Pardy – Signed a two year, $4.0 million contract with Dallas. Newfoundlanders in Southern Alberta (I believe there are one or two) now have one less player to cheer for, as Bonavista’s Adam Pardy left the only NHL organization he’s ever known. Given the dollars involved, it’s probably not a bad thing the Flames let him go.


Sheldon Souray – Signed a one year, $1.65 million contract with Dallas. There was a brief spell, somewhere in between the injuries, the public complaints about management, and the later injuries, when many Oilers fans regarded Studley Wonderbomb as the future captain of the team. Now, he’s one more veteran the city is all too happy to see leave.

Jim Vandermeer – Signed a one year, $1.0 million contract with San Jose. Vandermeer’s time in Edmonton began inauspiciously, as he was acquired in exchange for Patrick O’Sullivan, sparing Phoenix the rouble of buying him out. He struggled early, but played well enough down the stretch that I doubt anyone would have been too upset to see him back in a depth role.


Jean-Sebastien Giguere – Signed a two year contract with Colorado. Giggy’s time in Toronto began on a high note – he posted a 0.916 SV% after coming over in trade from the Ducks – but a lacklustre season and the emergence of James Reimer left him on the outside looking in. Still, while Giguere may not have had a memorable run like fellow veterans Curtis Joseph and Ed Belfour, he did manage to avoid Toskalol status.

Tim Brent – Signed a two year, $1.5 million contract with Carolina. The player so nice Anaheim drafted him twice established himself as a regular in 2010-11 after a nice run with the Marlies the previous year. A depth player, to be sure, but an honest worker and one who left no doubt that he was giving it his all – something that he got some welcome recognition for earlier this year.


Raffi Torres – Signed a two year, $3.5 million contract with Phoenix. Ah, Raffi. A Canucks-killer before he played for them, he did the same thing in Vancouver that he does everywhere else: played decent hockey, scored in wildly inconsistent bursts, and hurt things on the ice. He’s now seen two game seven losses in the Stanley Cup finals and been a contributor all along the way.

Tanner Glass – Signed a one year, $750,000 contract with Winnipeg. While rationally I think most Canucks fans would admit that the loss of Glass won’t mean a great deal on the ice, I still suspect that his departure was an unwelcome one for many. In talking to a pretty broad spectrum of the fanbase, and Glass is a guy that almost unanimously earned some level of respect or admiration from the fans. I’m sure he will be popular in Winnipeg.

(Sorry for the crummy start to the clip above; the bit I’m referencing is about 1:00 in.)

  • Good luck Vandy, I loved the way you threw and took punches while smiling. All the best Foster, to make good use of a hard point shot you need dangerous cycling forwards to draw attention down low: we didn’t have that yet. SMac, I love you but you need to be a better hockey player. JFJ, your time has come. Zach, I dunno *shrug*. Change always brings sadness, except in this case: GO TAMBO!

  • loudogYYC

    I can’t believe the amount of stupid deals that were signed today. There will be a lot of Hagman-Stajan type deals by this time next year.

    Congrats to Feaster and crew on not joining Stupidfest.

  • Krusher

    The Panthers make me think of the movie “Major League”. I just can not believe the group of misfits they have slapped together in such a short period. Got to love that salary cap “floor”!

  • Mikeyboy

    JW – I think the Oil have achieved addition through subtraction from your list. No issues with Vandemeer, although he was for the most part at the bottom end of the 30th place team’s D. No big deal.

    On an unrelated note, though, one of the interesting things that I heard a couple of the players (I think it was Belanger and Barker) talk about during their various interviews was referencing the Smitty situation and how it is critical that the Oil are building back up.

    I have to say for the most part that I was a little indifferent to the Smitty from LA saga as it was unfolding – the sentimental side of me was happy for getting him back, but I didn’t think that it was going to make a huge difference this year.

    In retrospect, maybe this was a little bit bigger of a deal than I personally gave credit for, in the importance that other players around the league may have placed on it. We were begging for guys like Belanger, Eager and co at last year’s FA Frenzy, and the team was basically shunned.

    Although we are coming off another last place finish, something appears to have changed. Maybe the general positive vibes from the Smitty situation had more to do with it than we think.

    Anyway – I’d be interested in your take on this, and if you got a similar sense from listening to the newcomers. Cheers.

  • callmebigbear

    i really think the oilers made themselves a better hockey club today with 5 smart signings. i couldnt help but keep my twitter on all day just refreshing continuously. september is just too far away!! i need oiler hockey now!!!

  • Mikeyboy

    Lots of talk about making some more moves for a number two D and possibly a goalie. Rumour of possible trade with Coyotes for Yandle which would be great. Any word on Weber situation and would a trade be possible once arbitration is done. Still think he is the best young D in league and prob top 3 overall. Trade of Gagner and Chorney along with a high pick next year. Would even throw in Omark to make it happen. Has anyone else noticed the mess Buffalo is in? Only 5 d signed and one goalie with just over 300K cap room. Some trades to happen there yet for sure.

  • #94 sized hole where my heart used to be...

    I’ve been hearing whispers the Oilers aren’t done sticking their toes in the FA pool…. Hasn’t been confirmed by a concrete source that ive seen but… Vokoun anyone?

    • #94 sized hole where my heart used to be...

      Volkoun would be crazy! Although the Oil should have got the deal done last night, seeing that today is Volkoun’s B-day and he turns 35!!! Now that cap hit is going to follow him thru.

  • #94 sized hole where my heart used to be...

    Players who sign multi-year contracts when they are age 35 or older (calculated on June 30 of the season the contract begins) count toward the cap under all circumstances, regardless of where (or if) the player is playing. The only cap relief is $100,000 from the player’s cap hit if he is assigned to the minors after the first year of the contract.

    CBA reference: Section 50.5 (d-i-B-5) (P. 203)

  • justDOit

    A goodbye and big thanks to Jim Dandy-Meer! From your bounce pass to Eberle for his POY breakaway, to your grinning fight against the Bruins, I loved what you brought to the game (just maybe not every game). It’ll be difficult to cheer against you.

    And again, bye Storts. It’s been excruciatingly difficult watching you try to become a hockey player while getting unmercifully beaten up(and those two might be related…). And no, that wasn’t your phone ringing on July 1.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Jonathon, any reason Gudbranson wouldn’t have been signed by now. Is this just sitting in Talons to do pile and will get done shortly, or is there a problem here with these two parties?

  • Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate

    I think Gudbranson has a Lindros complex – no games in the bigs but thinks he’s the deal. Lindros was good, Cups 0.

    Pass on the attitude.