As the NHL world waits … and waits … and waits for Zach Parise and Ryan Suter to decide where they will play their hockey in 2012 and beyond, it’s as good a time as any to take another look at the guys that might be on the Detroit Red Wings’ radar if Parise and/or Suter end up elsewhere …
• Matt Carle, D, Philadelphia Flyers: With Jason Garrison signing in Vancouver and Dennis Wideman in Calgary, the Red Wings’ options for a puck-moving defenseman would be severely limited should Suter pass.
The Flyers made a big push to re-sign their 27-year-old defenseman, who’s coming off a 38-point year, but Carle instead made it to free agency on July 1. Earlier this week, TSN’s Bob McKenzie tweeted the following:
If Suter not signing tonite = Carle not going tonite, rest of equation = Bryce Salvador not signing tonite. Carle/Salvador waiting on Suter
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 2, 2012
That makes sense, since Suter will set the top-end of the defenseman market. However, Salvador just re-signed with the Devils on Tuesday for three years and more than $9 million, so … maybe Carle would pull the trigger earlier, if Suter continues to delay his decision?
• Alexander Semin, F, Washington Capitals: Like Carle’s situation with Suter, Semin’s future plans may be on hold until Parise signs. Why? Well, in a light class of free-agent forwards, the oft-criticized Semin could be a jewel, even if TSN’s “Free Agent Frenzy” panel of experts ripped him on Sunday for being a poor locker-room presence.
The Red Wings are believed to have interest in Semin (possibly even if Parise or Suter winds up in Hockeytown), and as of Monday, were reportedly “in the mix” for the former Capital.
• Jaromir Jagr, F, Philadelphia Flyers: There has been no indication from Ken Holland that the Wings are interested in Jagr, one year after he spurned them to sign with the Flyers. That said, no one expected Mikael Samuelsson or Jordin Tootoo to land in Detroit and, well …
Jagr’s agent reportedly claimed that 21 teams have reached out to kick the aging tires here, and Jagr has apparently ruled out Boston or Montreal as possible landing spots. The latest rumor Tuesday had Jagr and the Dallas Stars potentially discussing a deal.
• Shane Doan, F, Phoenix Coyotes: A little unexpectedly, Doan became an unrestricted free agent on July 1 after failing to come to terms with the financially-hindered Coyotes. Doan has never played for another NHL team and, if Phoenix can get its act together, his first choice appears to be to stay in the desert.
However, we likely won’t know anything new until July 9 — that’s the date that we’ll find out if Greg Jamison, who’s trying to buy the Coyotes, will have his efforts blocked by a Glendale, Ariz., petition. If Phoenix can’t promise Doan at least a little stability as a franchise, then the veteran forward will immediately jump to the top of the list of available free agents.
Update: Helene St. James of the Free Press tweeted that the Wings will “go hard” after Doan if Parise signs with another team.
A few other names to keep an eye on: Scott Hannan, one of the dwindling crop of free-agent defensemen; Steve Sullivan and Petr Sykora, veteran wingers who may be looking for somewhere to round out their careers; and 29-year-old center Kyle Wellwood, who’s coming off a career-best season in Winnipeg.