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Listing five noteworthy September UFAs

Sep 1, 2013, 1:01 PM EDT

Brenden Morrow AP

Teemu Selanne has decided to stick around for one more season, Mikhail Grabovski has signed with the Washington Capitals, and it looks like Tomas Kaberle will play in the KHL. Even still, there are quite a few unrestricted free agents out there.

The reduced salary cap for the 2013-14 campaign has forced teams to make tough choices, but a lot of the players available now could potentially be had for bargain bin prices.

With that in mind, here are five noteworthy players that are still looking for work:

1) Ilya Bryzgalov — Obviously, his two season tenure with the Flyers left plenty to be desired, but he was also a dominant goaltender for years with the Phoenix Coyotes. At the age of 33, a comeback is certainly possible, especially if he can find work in a smaller market after struggling to adapt to life in Philadelphia. Finding a team looking for goaltending at this point is difficult, but if any netminder suffers a major injury during the preseason, Bryzgalov might get a phone call.

2) Brenden Morrow — Morrow isn’t an elite player offensively, but he is capable of playing a physical game and being a leader in the lockerroom. He’s 34 years old, so it’s reasonable to believe that he has some good hockey left in him. He’s the type of player that might have already gotten a job by now in a more free agent friendly market, but it would still be surprising if he ends up being unemployed when the regular season starts.

3) Damien Brunner — Even if the salary cap hadn’t decline significantly, teams would probably still be a bit unsure as to how to approach Brunner. He’s a 27 year old with just one shortened season of North American hockey under his belt. He was streaky during his time with the Detroit Red Wings, although when the dust settled he had an appealing 12 goals and 26 points in 44 games. Brunner reportedly was seeking a 2-3 year deal from Detroit worth $3 -3.5 million annually. That was too rich for the Red Wings, but he might find more suitors willing to take a chance on him if he’s willing to ink a one-year contract.

4) Ryan Whitney — In recent years, Whitney has suffered through more than his fair share of injuries. However, he had trouble getting playing time with the Edmonton Oilers last season when he was healthy and ended up spending some time in the press box. There was a time when Whitney was one of the better offensive defensemen in the game and at the age of 30, a comeback can’t be ruled out, but first he needs to find a team willing to give him an opportunity.

5) Vinny Prospal — Prospal will turn 39 before the 2013-14 campaign is over, but he’s shown that he’s still capable of producing at the NHL level. He led the offensively anemic Columbus Blue Jackets with 30 points in 48 games last season. He wanted to re-sign with the Blue Jackets, but it looks like the team had other plans. If he can’t find a suitor before the start of the season, then it could be the end of his 1,108 game NHL career.

Of course, this is just a sampling of the highlights and shouldn’t be regarded as a thorough list. For example, we didn’t even touch on Tim Thomas.

  1. endusersolutions2013 - Sep 1, 2013 at 3:48 PM

    Vinny Prospal showed last year he can still play – was his terams leading scorere with 30 points. I cannot grasp why he has not signed somwhere. Phoenix, Blues, Wild, Preds even his old team have some cap space and all could use his scoring. Maybe you don’t offer what he made last year (3.5 mill), but a 1 year 2 mil offer does not have a lot of downside.

  2. cheliostwin - Sep 1, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    Damien Brunner had 10 goals in the first 12 games of the season, then he had only one assist and no goals in the next 22 games. The Red Wings did offer him a contract, but he got greedy and insisted on more, so the Wings passed him by.
    Last year the Wings signed a free agent five days into the season, when they had four defensemen get injured in the first two games. Most of these free agents will probably be signed within a month of the season’s start.

  3. President Charles Logan - Sep 1, 2013 at 11:55 PM

    I can see Prospal going to the Canucks to reunite with Torts

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