Predictions on where some of the biggest free agents will land.
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Nylander- Sadly, Nylander will leave the best situation of his career for more money, and will be overpaid by Philadelphia after the rest have passed the flyers by. Their disastrous last season will certainly scare away consistent winners like Gomez and Drury.
Gomez- Reigning conn smythe champ and future hall of famer Scott Neidermayer has shown that Lou Lam doesn't always get what he wants. Gomez is not quite in Neidermayer territory and could be swayed to stay home by the shrewd GM. Ironically though, after Nylander runs for the money away from the Rangers, it could be an oversized payday that brings Gomez to the big apple.
Drury/Briere- Up until today I thought Drurys would replace Marleau and the little french wonder would stay home. But it seems the higher contract offer to Drury in combination with how long it took to get anything done has snubbed Briere into the waiting arms of either Montreal or LA. Funny that Briere seems almost surprised at being one of the prettiest girls at the dance.
Smyth- For the first time in his career, Smyth gets to choose where his loyalty will lie. This should be a very tough decision for the ultimate team player. Smyths giant heart may not net him the most money, but he will be the most widely sought after. He could wind up anywhere
Blake- The Smyth situation may be unpredictable, but it will take ALOT for him to resign with the Isles. Long Island isn't the hockey hotspot of Toronto and others, and is not close enough to contender status to attract players. If Blake doesn't land in Toronto, Wang and Snow will do everything they can to salvage this off-season and resign Blake.
Kariya- Kariya has always been about the game and his team before the money. His Colorado experiment failed horribly and he found a great niche with the underdog Predators, who he was hoping to resign with. Instability has thrown that out the window. He could sign with the LA Kings, who's speed, youth and unassuming personality are quite similar to Nashville. Has always been long rumoured to play for home town Vancouver, but Nonis has publicy stated they are hamstringed by the cap and will not be making free agent offers.
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