Jun 13, 2014, 12:02 PM EDT
Check PHT each weekday for the first four weeks of June for a new pending unrestricted free agent of the day. Today’s UFA of the Day is…
It wasn’t that long ago that it looked like Stralman might not be able to have a long and fruitful career in the NHL. By the time he was 25, he had already been traded twice and went into the summer of 2011 as an unrestricted free agent because the Columbus Blue Jackets didn’t feel he was even worth a qualifying offer.
The defenseman wasn’t able to secure a contract over the summer, so he accepted an invitation to attend the New Jersey Devils’ training camp. When they released him from camp, he continued to practice with the team in the hopes that they might eventually sign him. In mid-October, he returned to his home country Sweden because he wasn’t allowed to travel with the Devils on their trip to Nashville.
His intention was to talk to his family and decide how long he should wait for the Devils to make him an offer before moving on, per the Bergen Record.
“I had a confidence that I could make it back, but I didn’t really have the confidence that I was going to get the chance to come back,” Stralman told reporters Thursday in Los Angeles. “It kind of worked itself out.”
Indeed it did because on Nov. 4, 2011, the New York Rangers finally gave him the chance he was looking for and he ran with it. He’s not an all-star defenseman, but he’s solid defensively and has been trusted with big minutes in New York’s playoff run.
He’s not a big factor offensively so he usually doesn’t end up on highlight reels, but Game 4 was an exception as he denied the Kings a goal that might have changed the outcome of that contest:
His future with the Rangers is likely dependent on Brad Richards‘ situation as the team will be in a difficult cap spot unless they buy out the forward’s contract, but regardless of what happens there, Stralman shouldn’t have to wait until November to get a contract this time around.
- Red Wings’ Devellano calls Mantha ‘very, very, very disappointing’ 0
- BREAKING: End of an era in New Jersey as Shero replaces Lamoriello as GM 5
- Once again, Rick Nash isn’t scoring in the playoffs 14
- Video: U.S. stays unbeaten at Worlds with win over defending champs Russia 6
- Andersen shuts out Flames as Ducks stay perfect in playoffs 6
- Wild can’t contain ‘Hawks star forwards in Game 2 40
- Prust blasts referee Watson after getting tossed from Game 2 28
- Stamkos, power play comes alive as Lightning take 2-0 series lead vs. Habs 29
- Video: Stamkos ends goal drought in style 9
- Here’s your Stanley Cup playoff TV schedule for tonight 9
- Niklas Kronwall suspended for Game 7 vs. Tampa Bay (116)
- Vigneault: ‘Standards have been set’ after Ovechkin, Backstrom hits (103)
- Friedman: Penguins need to ‘think about’ trading Malkin (89)
- Report: Developers file intent to build arena in Seattle suburb (81)
- Lightning’s Bishop silences Red Wings in hard fought Game 7 (81)