NHL Rumors: Top 5 Free Agents Still Available

While most of the dust has settled on NHL free agency, there's still a ton of talent available on the open market. July 1 brought some historic movement across the NHL and now general managers around the league try to get creative to either create some more cap space to sign a player or tinker with a trade to fill a hole in their roster. Let's take a look at five of the best free agents still available:

Nazem Kadri

The 31-year-old Kadri had himself one of the best contract years in history as he posted 87 points in 71 games and went on to hoist the Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche. His previous career high was 61 points over five seasons ago and now he sits in the driver's seat for a brand new long-term extension. Look for Kadri to sign a long-term deal, for at least $6.5 million per season and while it's been quiet so far, the buzz is starting to pick up. The Avalanche are very much still in the mix, along with the Seattle Kraken, Detroit Red Wings, Anaheim Ducks, Calgary Flames and New York Islanders.

John Klingberg

The best defenseman available is John Klingberg, previous of the Dallas Stars and to this point it doesn't appear he'll be heading back to Texas. The 29-year-old is coming off a fine season, finishing the year with 47 points in 74 games. Lots of teams could use an offensive right-handed defenseman, the problem is not many teams can afford him. Klingberg has been linked to a few teams including the Montreal Canadiens, Ottawa Senators and Buffalo Sabres.

Patrice Bergeron

This one is getting weird as many are wondering why haven't the Bruins got pen to paper with their legend, Patrice Bergeron. Some rumblings out there stating the star isn't exactly thrilled with some of the team's moves, including firing head coach Bruce Cassidy. 
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While Boston still appears to be home for Bergeron heading into next season, if this one drags on any longer, expect to see some teams get involved with offers to try and entice the Bruins legend to finish off his career with another franchise.

Phil Kessel 

The veteran talent is still available to sign and Phil Kessel is right up there as one of the interesting options. The iron man is looking to sign on for a couple more seasons and has become quite the mentor in Arizona, however to this point it doesn't appear like the Coyotes are interested in bringing him back. The two-time Stanley Cup champion is coming off a season posting 52 points in 82 games and can still supply some secondary scoring and be a fine sniper for a team's second power play. Look for Kessel to sign in a warm climate so he can fish, golf and spend some time with his young family under the sun.

Nino Niederreiter

A power forward who can play up and down your lineup, Nino Niederreiter is still on the open market. The Carolina Hurricanes don't appear to be interested in a reunion to this point, and it's a bit surprising considering he scored 24 goals and 44 points in 75 games. One team to watch here is the New Jersey Devils who want some more scoring on their wings and could pair a couple of countrymen together by playing Niederreiter with Nico Hischier. 

Do they stay, do they go, at this point there's a chance all five of these players return to their teams from last season but if anyone is on the move, look for Klingberg and Niederreiter to be in different jerseys next season.
Photo credit:  James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports