Insider: Corey Perry “Will Be In The NHL Within 10 Days”

The details surrounding the incident that left Corey Perry without a team and without a contract back in November are still sketchy. But according to the latest rumors, that will not be enough to scare off teams looking for an experienced veteran leader for their locker room heading down the stretch. 

NHL insider Mike Johnson said on the Got Yer Back podcast Thursday morning that he expects Perry back in uniform in very short order: 

I think he’ll have a dozen offers and I bet he’s in the NHL in the next 10 days.

Fellow insider Pierre LeBrun adds, “there’s no question there’s interest, and there’s no question in my mind that he signs with a team before March 8th.” He says that a number of teams are certainly doing their due diligence, but he’s unsure we’ll ever find out exactly what happened, perhaps even due to the respect for privacy from other persons involved.

Would there be a backlash in a heavy media market, like, for instance, on a Canadian team, for bringing in a player after such a controversial incident (whatever it might have been) that led to a contract termination? Johnson says no:

 “I would imagine if he doesn’t end up in Canada it’s because HE doesn’t want the attention. I don’t think the clubs would not try to sign him for fear of a backlash… From what I gather, I think, for instance, the Edmonton Oilers, the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Vancouver Canucks, whoever might offer him a contract, would NOT say ‘we don’t want to deal with this.’

“It’s tricky, you might have to take a leap of faith and trust that there’s nothing else without actually knowing. But I still think, from what we know about sports, he will be in the NHL.”

The 38-year-old veteran requested and received a meeting with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman last week, who gave him the green light to sign with any team, even though, it should be noted, that Perry hadn’t actually been banned from participating. He just wanted to clear the air with the commish.

Perry had registered four goals and nine points in 16 games with the Blackhawks before being terminated, and in his 19-year career he has 892 points in 1273 games and has been to three Stanley Cup finals.

Photo: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports