June 3rd, 2011 by

Recent news around the league

Brad Richards may be the top NHL free agent this offseason.

With the Bruins run to the Stanley Cup Finals it’s been pretty easy to miss some of the other things going on around the NHL. So here’s a little rundown of recent NHL news.

Thrashers moving to Winnipeg:

This past Tuesday it was announced that True Sports and Entertainment, which is a Canadian ownership group has agreed to a deal that allows them to purchase the Atlanta Thrashers franchise.

With the sale, the franchise is being relocated to Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada. The relocation is still pending approval by the NHL Board of Governors, the group will vote on the matter during a meeting on June 21.

This will be the second time a NHL franchise has called Winnipeg its home as the Jets played in Winnipeg from 1979 to 1996. After the 1996 season, the Jets moved to Phoenix Arizona and became the Coyotes.

The name of the franchise is still to be determined, but it has been confirmed they will not be called the Jets.

Canadiens resign Hall Gill:

Concord Massachusetts native Hall Gill has resigned with the Montreal Canadiens. The one-time Bruins defenseman was set to become an unrestricted free agent. The deal is for one year, and for $2.25 million.

This will be Gill’s third season in Montreal. Gill has just 20 points in two seasons with the Habs. Despite the low total in points, Gill has been solid for Montreal. The six-foot-seven defenseman is one of the Canadiens top penalty killers. Gill has paired well with P.K. Subban; Bruins fans saw firsthand during the playoffs how well that pair can shut down the opposition.

Sydney Crosby cleared for off-ice workouts:

Pittsburgh Penguins star forward Sydney Crosby has been cleared by team doctors to start his offseason off-ice workouts.

After a few hard hits to the head Crosby suffered a mild concussion. Crosby last played on January 5, and went on to miss the remainder of the regular season. Crosby also sat out the entire seven game series against the Tampa Bay Lightning, a series the Penguins lost.

Crosby will begin his workouts in late-July or early-August, and will be closely monitored by team doctors.

Although he missed exactly half of the Penguins season, Crosby still managed to lead the team with 32 goals, and 66 points.

Stars won’t offer contract to Brad Richards:

The Dallas Stars have announced they won’t be offering a contract to star forward Brad Richards. Richards who is set to become an unrestricted free agent has made it known he is unlikely to sign a deal with the Stars until the Stars ownership situation is resolved.

The Stars made a few long-term-offers to the star forward prior to the trade deadline, but nothing was worked out.

The Stars will try and trade the rights to Richards prior to him becoming a free agent on July 1, but due to his no trade clause, Richards would have to approve any deal the Stars have in the works.

Numerous teams have contacted the Stars about a deal for Richards. In 72 games last season Richards had 28 goals and 49 assists.

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