The NHL has had a busy offseason with a lot of players moving to new teams. Not all of them will have a huge impact on their new team. However, here are a handful of players that are set to become key members of their new team.
Top 5 NHL Free Agent Signings
- David Backes – Boston Bruins C
Backes signed a five year deal with the Bruins this offseason after spending his first ten seasons with the St. Louis Blues. At 32, Backes is on the down side of his career. I don’t see his production getting any better than last year. With 21 goals and 45 points, his production just a few points off of what we have seen from him in the past. Backes is a gritty, two-way player and very physical in front of the net. He will fit in with the Bruins playing style. I see him as a second-line center.
- Kyle Okposo – Buffalo Sabres RW
Okposo made a huge move by signing a seven year contract with the Sabres. Okposo spent the last 9 seasons with the New York Islanders playing alongside John Tavares. Okposo will be joining a very talented group of players including Evander Kane, Ryan O’Reilly and Jack Eichel. At 28, Okposo is at the top of his game with 22 goals and 42 assists last year. If he stays healthy, you can expect the same if not better this year. Okposo will likely be playing on the top line this season.
- Milan Lucic – Edmonton Oilers LW
Lucic spent just one season with Los Angeles Kings, putting up good numbers – 20 goals and 35 assists – before that he spent 9 seasons with the Boston Bruins. Lucic will be bring a lot of size, speed and toughness to the top line with Connor McDavid and Jordan Eberle. I can see his production going up this year with the Oilers.
- Loui Eriksson – Vancouver Canucks LW
Eriksson’s move to the Canucks was a big signing – 6 years for the 31 year old who had 30 goals and 33 assists with the Boston Bruins last season. Eriksson brings a lot of scoring ability to a struggling Canucks team that finished 29th last season with 191 goals. Eriksson will be playing on the top line with the Sedins and expect to see him on the power play and penalty kill.
- James Reimer – Florida Panthers G
The Panthers signed Reimer to a 5 year deal after one season with the San Jose Sharks, playing in just 8 games with 6 wins and 2 losses. Before that he spent 6 seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs with 85 wins and 75 losses in 207 games played. Reimer will be playing behind an aging Roberto Luongo (37) so you can expect to see him playing about 30 to 40 games this year as the Panthers try to keep Luongo fresh for the playoffs.