NHL free agency opened with a furious rush — 46 signings in the opening 2 1/2 hours of free agency for a record $393 million on Tuesday morning, according to Canadian cable network TSN.
The Ducks were responsible for several hellos and goodbyes. Anaheim signed free-agent, 29-year-old defenseman Clayton Stoner, a big physical presence, who spent his entire NHL career with the Minnesota Wild.
Stoner’s deal was somewhat surprising — a four-year, $13-million agreement. The 6-foot-4, 216-pounder was on the Wild’s third-defense pair this past regular season, recorded 84 penalty minutes in 63 games and was highly effective in the postseason.
The deal has not yet been announced by the Ducks.
A trio of Ducks’ players found new homes. Goalie Jonas Hiller signed with the Calgary Flames, center Mathieu Perreault landed in Winnipeg for three years and $9 million, and defenseman Stephane Robidas reached a three-year, $9-million agreement with Toronto.
Hiller, who had lost the No. 1 job in Anaheim, will likely be the starter in Calgary. His deal was for two years, $9 million. It should be noted that Calgary’s president of hockey operations, Brian Burke, signed Hiller to his first contract in May, 2007 when Burke was the Ducks’ general manager.