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3 Free Agents In 2021 Seattle Should Look At Signing

January 3, 2021, 2:20 PM ET [9 Comments]
Sean Maloughney
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Though Vegas was unbelievably successful in their first NHL season, they did not wow the league with their free agency signings in their inaugural season. Here are the moves that Vegas made in 2017 via Free Agency.

Chris Casto - 1 Year 650,000
Brad Hunt - 2 Years 1.3 Million
Maxime Lagace - 1 Year 650,000
Paul Thompson - 1 Year 650,000
Oscar Dansk - 1 Year 650,000
Stefan Mattieu - 1 Year 650,000
TJ Tynan - 1 Year 650,000

That is not a group of NHL players ready to make an impact on a team. Will this be the same case with Seattle?

Seattle does have a few advantages over Vegas. For starters the city of Seattle may be a far more enticing place to live than Vegas. The sprawling metropolis on the sea for many would appear to be a better place to live, raise a family, make a living than a city in the middle of the desert.

I'm not saying this to disrespect Vegas, merely pointing out perception. Winning changed all of that and now Vegas has become a spot that highly sought after free agents like Pietrangelo will come to play for.

Today we are going to take a look at 3 Pending Free Agents in 2021 that may make sense or be available for the Seattle Kraken.

Paul Stastny

The 35 year old has had a long tenured and successful career, most notably with the Colorado Avalanche and then the St Louis Blues. 726 points in 945 games. Now he is once again with Winnipeg; his second go with the Jets and will be counted on to centre their second line.

At his age, if Stastny continues his career after this season he is almost certainly looking at more one year deals with most NHL teams. Seattle could be the rare option that could offer him a two year contract or for another hot take, offer him the captaincy.

Stastny is a veteran skilled player who has been a staple in the league for more than a decade. He has always been described as a well liked leader who leads by example. He has also been a part of the Golden Knights and could help another young expansion team through the bumps and hiccups.

Nikita Gusev

Goose came over from the Golden Knights, playing in his first NHL season with the New Jersey Devils last season. The Russian winger had a fairly successful season with 44 points in 66 games. Defensively Gusev has issues and as a result he bounced around the lineup before eventually settling in as a regular top six player.

If Gusev takes big steps forward this season I imagine the Devils will look to lock him up quickly but if he falters or wants a change of scenery I imagine Seattle would come knocking.

With a flat cap still in the cards for next season, players may once again be looking at one year deals, bet on themselves, with the hope of landing a more lucrative deal afterwords. At 28 years old Gusev is in that range and he would certainly get ample playing time on a Kraken roster that would not have any elite forwards.

Dougie Hamilton

The dream and a massively unlikely one at that. Dougie Hamilton is perhaps one of the most underappreciated players in the game. He is a Norris worthy defenceman who not only produces points but thinks the game and carries the puck in a way that very few players at his position can.

Somehow for some reason, despite his ability of play he has not stayed with any team for more than three seasons and is set to be a UFA at the end of this year. Carolina would be crazy to not extend him or find a trade partner to at least gain value if they know he will not extend.

Again, cap space is at a premium right now and there are not too many teams that have the space to take on too many high end long term contracts. Seattle could offer Hamilton a max term deal at 9 or 10 million dollars and likely outbid any team on acquiring the right shot defender. It would be a risk and his injury last season should be cause for at least some concern but if GM Ron Francis could find a way, he would be acquiring the services of an elite player for years to come.
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