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NHL

2022 NHL free agency: Who are the top restricted and unrestricted free agents?

The NHL free agency market starts on Wednesday at noon ET, and there are some big names available. Here are the top restricted and unrestricted free agents.

Update:
The NHL free agency market starts on Wednesday at noon ET, and there are some big names available. Here are the top restricted and unrestricted free agents.
Christian PetersenAFP

The Colorado Avalanche dethroned the Tampa Bay Lightening to take their first Stanley Cup in over two decades. Now the rest of the league will look to strengthen their rosters to knock off the Avs next year.

Avs have loads of Cup winners on the market

The free agent market starts on Wednesday, July 13th, and we are expecting some big moves that will send ripples throughout the league.

The top free agent target in this years market is John Gaudreau who looks like farther out than in with the Calgary Flames. Penguins legend Evgeni Malkin could be on his way out of Pittsburgh and four members of Colorado’s Stanley Cup winning team are hitting the free agency market as well, so there could be some major shake ups with reigning champions.

One of the big questions coming into the free agency period, is how much will the stars of yesterday on the back ends of their career get when they sign with a new team. Guys like Malkin, Claude Giroux and Patrice Bergeron could be looking at the last contract of their career.

Gaudreau the top free agent available

Most of the top free agents are unrestricted, meaning they can sign any deal they are offered without interference from their former team. Restricted free agents can listen to offers from other teams, but if their former team can match the offer, then they stay put.

So without further ado, here are the list of top free agents, restricted and unrestricted, of this market.

Unrestricted free agents

1) Johnny Gaudreau, LW, Calgary

2) Filip Forsberg, LW, Nashville

3) Evgeni Malkin, C, Pittsburgh

4) Kris Letang, D, Pittsburgh

5) Nazem Kardi, C, Colorado

6) Darcy Kuemper, G, Colorado

7) Patrice Bergeron, C, Boston

8) Andrew Burakovsky, LW/RW, Colorado

9) Vincent Trocheck, C, Carolina

10) Claude Giroux, C/LW, Carolina

11) Pierre-Luc Dubois, C, Winnipeg

12) Ondrej Palat, LW, Tampa Bay

13) Nick Leddy, D, St. Louis

14) Evander Kane, LW/RW, Edmonton

15) John Klingberg, D, Dallas

16) Jack Campbell, G, Toronto

17) Phil Kessel, RW, Phoenix

18) Josh Manson, D, Colorado

19) Dave Perron, RW/LW, St. Louis

20) Ryan Strome, C, New York

Restricted free agents

1) Matthew Tkachuk, RW, Calgary

2) Jason Robertson, RFA, Dallas

3) Jake Oettinger, G, Dallas

4) Jesper Bratt, LW/RW, New Jersey

5) Patrik Laine, RW, Columbus

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