First Look at the Free Agency Frenzy: Northeast Division

Mar 03, 2012; Montreal, QC, CAN; Toronto Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer (34) and Montreal Canadiens goalie Peter Budaj (30) before the first period at the Bell Center. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-US PRESSWIRE

Providing you all read my post on the Northwest division, you know that I found myself adventuring through CapGeek, looking at what each team is dealing with this summer. Since there was quite a bit of information in there, I have decided to share the interesting stuff here with you guys.

Division by division, I am looking at each's teams UFAs and RFA's for this year, FAs for next year, and give a quick summary of their situation. Of course, I will also look at what players we could poach from those teams, whether through UFA negotiations or trades or offer sheets. If you want more info on a team's non-roster players, those are towards the bottom of the CapGeek pages for those teams. Through a randomizing scheme to determine the order in which I would do each division, the Northeast division is next on the list.

Boston Bruins

Capgeek page, 2011-2012 individual stats

2012 RFAs: Benoit Pouliot, Tuukka Rask

2012 UFAs: Brian Rolston, Joe Corvo, Greg Zanon, Mike Mottau, Marty Turco

2013 FAs: Milan Lucic, Nathan Horton, Tyler Seguin, Brad Marchand, Jordan Caron, Andrew Ference, Tim Thomas, Anton Khudobin

What are they up to? Who would’ve thought that the team with last year's Vezina and Conn Smythe winning goalie is now having lots of uncertainty with goaltending? After a rough down year, Tim Thomas has told Boston management that he will take a year off from hockey. Unfortunately for the Bruins, unless they trade away his contract, they still have to eat up the last year of his $5M/year contract. And who can they put in his place? Tuukka Rask is an RFA, Khudobin is still young and unproven at the NHL level, and Marty Turco will most likely continue his journeyman ways. Meanwhile, Chris Kelly and Gregory Campbell both signed new contracts yesterday.

Can Vancouver poach anyone? Not really anyone to take here, although a trade for one of next year's FAs is a bit tempting. Still, Boston is pretty set in what they're doing, with the exception of goaltending.

Buffalo Sabres

Capgeek page, 2011-2012 individual stats

2012 RFAs: Patrick Kaleta, Tyler Ennis, TJ Brennan

2012 UFAs: Brad Boyes, Jochen Hecht

2013 FAs: Derek Roy, Cody Hodgson, Matt Ellis, Robyn Regehr, Jordan Leopold, Mike Weber, Alexander Sulzer, Jhonas Enroth

What are they up to? It appears that Buffalo doesn’t have too much to worry about this year, with most of their lineup already locked up until next summer. They will likely get their RFAs dealt with easily, and perhaps start looking at extensions for next year’s free agents. They do have 2 more years on Ryan Miller, who wasn't as great this year as we have seen him before. This is a team that would have to make moves through trades, if any.

Can Vancouver poach anyone? Don’t you dare suggest trying to get him back, it’s definitely not happening. A couple players spark a very small amount of interest, but not enough to make a big deal out of it.

Montreal Canadiens

Capgeek page, 2011-2012 individual stats

2012 RFAs: Lars Eller, Blake Geoffrion, Aaron Palushaj, Ryan White, Mike Blunden, Petteri Nokelainen, Alexei Emelin, Brendon Nash, Raphael Diaz, PK Subban, Frederic St-Denis, Carey Price

2012 UFAs: Travis Moen, Mathieu Darche, Brad Staubitz, Chris Campoli

2013 FAs: Max Pacioretty, David Desharnais, Yannick Weber, Peter Budaj

What are they up to? Amidst all the drama with management and coach firings, les Habitants have a whopping 12 RFAs to deal with this summer, and that doesn’t even include their farm team! Although they have the older core locked up nice and tightly, it’s the young guns that are causing drama. Word is that Subban and Price are at the top of the list for guys to sign as quickly as possible.

Can Vancouver poach anyone? Offer sheets would definitely be useful against this team. There are some young players here who would look great on our team, both now and in the future. Eller, Geoffrion, and Diaz pop out in there for me, some young guys to add to our future. Moen and Campoli also appear to be options, although injuries this last season could add some risk there.

Ottawa Senators

Capgeek page, 2011-2012 individual stats

2012 RFAs: Nick Foligno, Jim O`Brien, Kaspars Daugavins, Erik Karlsson

2012 UFAs: Jesse Winchester, Zenon Konopka, Rob Klinkhammer (that name is amazing), Filip Kuba, Matt Gilroy, Matt Carkner, Alex Auld

2013 FAs: Daniel Alfredsson, Chris Neil, Kyle Turris, Bobby Butler, Peter Regin, Zach Smith, Erik Condra, Sergei Gonchar, Ben Bishop

What are they up to? Their top priority this summer will likely be discussing a huge payday for Norris candidate Karlsson. Otherwise, they will likely focus on re-signing a lot of their players, and probably bolstering their defense and scoring some more. Craig Anderson is signed there for a few years, so Auldy is likely gone with Bishop on a very inexpensive contract.

Can Vancouver poach anyone? Personally, I would love to see Auldy back in a Canucks uniform, even if it is just as a backup to either Luongo or Schneider. Otherwise, Foligno is coming off a 47-point season and a 2-year $1.2M cap hit contract, and might be worth consideration. Gilroy had a pretty good year for a defensive player, with 20 points in 67 games split between the Sens and Lightning, but was a scratch towards the end of the Rangers series, with Carkner taking his place.

Toronto Maple Leafs

Capgeek page, 2011-2012 individual stats

2012 RFAs: Nikolai Kulemin, Matt Frattin, Cody Franson, Ben Scrivens

2012 UFAs: Joey Crabb, Jay Rosehill, Jonas Gustavsson

2013 FAs: Tim Connolly, Joffrey Lupul, Matthew Lombardi, Clarke MacArthur, Colby Armstrong, Tyler Bozak, David Steckel, Carl Gunnarsson

What are they up to? This won’t be a busy summer for Burkie in terms of re-signing players, but he will likely start getting busy with trades and contract extensions. He has some choices to make with the forwards, with lots of UFAs next year. Their biggest story this year is goaltending, with only James Reimer signed on so far for next year. The kid may be a "saviour" to Toronto fans, but he has yet to prove he can handle the starting job. They are going to need another goalie, no matter how Optimus Reim can perform.

Can Vancouver poach anyone? A few of those players would probably work well as rentals on the last year of their contracts, such as Lupul and Steckel. However, those cap hits would not be friendly to our own cap situation. Seriously, Lupul's cap hit is twice what Alexandre Burrows has. It can also be seen why Toronto is constantly being mentioned as a place to trade Roberto Luongo to, but I can imagine Burkie trying to snag Cory Schneider. Sure, it may cost Toronto a few draft picks if he does it through an offer sheet, but there are some players on each side who would make for an interesting trade.

Check back tomorrow to see which division I do next.

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