UFA Phil Kessel Still Wants To Play & Willing To End Ironman Streak

Phil Kessel is still an unrestricted free agent, but the ironman streak is still alive. He said that he wants to play in 2023-24 and that he is open to ending the streak. He hasn't missed a regular season game since 2009-10 with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Even though he played in all 82 games for the Vegas Golden Knights last season, he only played four playoff games on their Stanley Cup run. Despite recording two points in those games, this felt like the ironman streak was coming to an end in a hurry.

The Golden Knights don't seem to want to bring him back after playing him that little on their Cup run and not expressing interest to this point, but there could be others who still have room for an experienced, speedy, sniper who is very durable.

Despite slowing down over the past few seasons, Kessel can still score and put up points. He recorded 14 goals and 36 points last season in a middle to bottom-six role. While he got a one-year, $1.5 million AAV deal last season, it's not likely he signs for over $1 million for one year if a team signs him this year.

Kessel is a three-time Cup winner, has 992 points, and 83 playoff points. It's not necessarily ideal if he waits around into the season for a team to show interest, but it could very well happen. Teams like the Montreal Canadiens, Washington Capitals, and Columbus Blue Jackets were all ravaged with injuries last season. It can happen to any team. Maybe a team that's lacking scoring and depth up front will take a chance on Kessel. Teams like the New York Rangers or Minnesota Wild come to mind. We will have to wait and see if a team is willing to sign a capable NHL talent at age 36.

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