Top-10 UFA Countdown: #3 - Cody Franson

Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
June 25 2015 06:00AM

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Photo Credit: Jake Roth/USA TODAY Sports

This is a series counting down the top-10 pending UFAs. It will be posted across the Nation Network over the next month! Enjoy! 

When the Nashville Predators acquired Cody Franson and Mike Santorelli in February, everybody thought it was a match made in heaven. After all, the team was getting two quality players that they were familiar with, without giving up any present assets. Theoretically, it was the type of move that should've taken a good team to greatness, but instead, it was a bust.

David Poile was quick to admit that the team was forcing a square peg into a round hole. After all, the Predators are very adament about following shot handedness with their defencemen, and they already had three quality righties. As such, Franson didn't recieve the necessary playing time, didn't fit in, and will now hit free agency. But what will he command?

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Thomas Drance's NHL Awards Ballot

Thomas Drance
June 24 2015 08:00PM

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Photo Credit: Jake Roth/USA TODAY Sports

This was my first hockey season as a member of the PHWA, and I had the mixed blessing of casting an NHL Awards ballot. It was an honour, but it was also a heavy burden.

After years of slamming NHL awards voters for this, that and the other thing, actually having a ballot this season changed my perspective. I agonized for weeks over my selections, researched deserving candidates for each award heavily, re-streamed game video, and talked to a variety of industry people whom I trust before allowing my vote to be tallied. 

Some of these decisions were decided by a wafer thin margin. I'd wake up one day thinking that Erik Karlsson was my pick for the Norris, and I'd go to sleep that night thinking that 'really, P.K. Subban was the most valuable two-way defender in hockey this season.' Then I cast my first place Norris vote for neither player.

Anyway, in the interest of transparency and because these sorts of hockey conversations are pertinent and fun, I'd like to present my 2014-15 NHL Awards ballot for your scrutiny, consideration and entertainment. 

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$71.4 Million

Jonathan Willis
June 24 2015 04:58PM

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It’s a busy time in NHL circles, with the league awards, entry draft and the opening of free agency all shoved together into the span of a week. On Tuesday we got an important piece of news that relates to teams’ summer planning: the salary cap for the 2015-16 season is expected to come in at $71.4 million. This makes it a good time to look at Edmonton’s salary situation.

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Which Goalie is the best fit?

Jason Gregor
June 24 2015 10:50AM

Interview

I'm just about to board my plane to Florida. Couldn't sleep in the airport, so I'm regretting my red-eye flight decision even more now, but the good news is I'm able to share an interview I had regarding goalies.

Evaluating goalies is the most difficult managerial job in hockey. If you chart the success rate of scouts, analysts, media and fans' evaluations of goalies, compared to defence or forwards, it is significantly lower. I can't give an informed opinion on goalies, so I sat down with a guy who could: Kevin Woodley from the Goalie Magazine.

He has written some very insightful articles on goalies, and he shared his thoughts with me on Cam Talbot, Eddie Lack, Jacob Markstrom and Robin Lehner.

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FOREPLAY: THE NEXT 48 HOURS

Robin Brownlee
June 24 2015 09:00AM

TwoMoreSleeps

Fans of the Edmonton Oilers will be fist-pumping until they need Tommy John surgery when GM Peter Chiarelli calls Connor McDavid’s name with the first overall pick at the NHL Entry Draft Friday, and rightfully so. That goes without saying.

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