The NHL playoffs are still rolling on, but it isn’t too early to start thinking about free agency with July 1 fast approaching. At one point, the upcoming UFA class was shaping up to be one of the strongest in years. Established scorers such as Vladimir Tarasenko and Patrick Kane still headline the crop, but with Dylan Larkin and David Pastrnak recently signing lucrative extensions, as well as J.T. Miller last summer, the class took a significant hit in terms of top-end talent.
Tarasenko and Kane could see pricey contracts coming their way, but it will be in new uniforms. Both players are with the New York Rangers after getting dealt to them ahead of the 2023 trade deadline. Perhaps one of them will stay in Manhattan beyond this season, but the Rangers’ cap situation will make it difficult to retain both. Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci will be UFAs, though it’s probably safe to assume both forwards will likely continue playing for the Bruins if they don’t decide to hang up the skates.
Still, there are other potential UFAs that will end up being attractive to teams looking to bolster their rosters in July. What will happen to Max Pacioretty after he tore his Achilles for a second time in less than a year? If the Carolina Hurricanes don’t re-sign him, he could be a bargain option as a UFA if a team is willing to take a chance on him. If the Tampa Bay Lightning don’t re-sign Alex Killorn, he’d bring valuable veteran experience to a team ready for a deep playoff run.
Related: Rangers Acquire Tarasenko, Mikkola from the Blues
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Even after the first tier of free agents, the second tier should provide teams with valuable scoring depth while not costing back-breaking amounts of money on lengthy contracts. Jason Zucker had a rebound season with the Pittsburgh Penguins, while Max Domi played well for a struggling Blackhawks squad and has been a key factor in the Dallas Stars making a deep playoff run. In net, there are some intriguing options in Tristan Jarry, Joonas Korpisalo, and Semyon Varlamov.
With free agency now less than two months away, we’ll expand this list to 30 players. It will receive updates as needed if players re-sign with their current teams ahead of free agency. Without further ado, Here are our top 30 free agents (all stats are from the regular season).
Top 30 UFAs for 2023
|Rank||Player||Position||Age||Games Played||Goals||Assists||Points||Team||Cap Hit|
|1||Patrick Kane||RW||34||73||21||35||56||CHI/NYR||$10.5 million|
|2||Vladimir Tarasenko||RW||31||69||18||32||50||STL/NYR||$7.5 million|
|3||Dmitry Orlov||D||31||66||7||29||36||WSH/BOS||$5.1 million|
|4||Alex Killorn||LW/RW||34||82||27||37||64||TBL||$4.45 million|
|6||Jason Zucker||LW/RW||31||78||27||21||48||PIT||$5.1 million|
|8||Ryan O’Reilly||C||32||53||16||14||30||STL/TOR||$7.5 million|
|9||Max Domi||LW/C||28||80||20||36||56||CHI/DAL||$3 million|
|10||Tyler Bertuzzi||LW/RW||28||50||8||22||30||DET/BOS||$4.75 million|
|11||Tristan Jarry||G||28||47||2.90 GAA||.909 SV%||PIT||$3.5 million|
|12||Max Pacioretty||RW||34||5||3||0||3||CAR||$6 million|
|13||Ivan Barbashev||F||27||82||16||29||45||STL/VGK||$2.25 million|
|14||J.T. Compher||C||28||82||17||35||52||COL||$3.5 million|
|15||Vladislav Gavrikov||D||27||72||3||7||10||CBJ/LAK||$2.8 million|
|16||Shayne Gostisbehere||D||30||75||13||28||41||ARI/CAR||$4.5 million|
|18||Joonas Korpisalo||G||28||39||2.87 GAA||.914 SV%||CBJ/LAK||$1.3 million|
|19||Tomáš Tatar||LW/RW||32||82||20||28||48||NJD||$4.5 million|
|20||Carson Soucy||D||28||78||3||13||16||SEA||$2.75 million|
|21||Jordan Staal||C||34||81||17||17||34||CAR||$6 million|
|22||Semyon Varlamov||G||35||23||2.70 GAA||.913 SV%||NYI||$5 million|
|24||Evan Rodrigues||C/RW||29||69||16||23||39||COL||$2 million|
|25||Erik Haula||C/LW||32||80||14||27||41||NJD||$2.375 million|
|26||Frederik Andersen||G||33||34||2.48 GAA||.903 SV%||CAR||$4.5 million|
|27||Pierre Engvall||LW||27||76||17||13||30||TOR/NYI||$2.25 million|
|28||Connor Clifton||D||28||78||5||18||23||BOS||$1 million|
|29||Alexander Kerfoot||C/LW||28||82||10||22||32||TOR||$3.5 million|
|30||Garnet Hathaway||RW||31||84||13||9||22||WSH/BOS||$1.5 million|