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McKenzie: Flames make big move, Habs still looking for winger

Bob McKenzie

6/30/2009 11:06:14 PM

Let's see now, the free agency period doesn't begin until noon et/9am pt on Wednesday, but it looks as though the Calgary Flames are one team that is ready to drop the puck on the new season right now.

They're pretty close to the cap, with the signing of Jay Bouwmeester to a five-year, $6.6 million per year deal and their top four of Bouwmeester, Dion Phaneuf, Robyn Regher and Cory Sarich looks rather imposing on the Calgary blueline.  So the Flames are likely to be the least busy Canadian team on Canada Day.

Montreal is expected to follow up its acquisition of Scott Gomez by going hard at one of the elite free agent wingers from a pool that includes Martin Havlat, Marian Hossa and Marian Gaborik.

Vancouver would also like one of those elite wingers - Mike Cammalleri is also a candidate - but all eyes in Vancouver are on the Sedins and whether they'll be re-signed or go to market.

When the Twins tucked into bed in Sweden Tuesday night, no decision had been made but this one looks like it has the potential to be an hour-by-hour vigil right up to noon Eastern.

It's bound to be an interesting Canada Day.  Remember, teams can't talk to free agents until after 12 noon Eastern time. To do so early would be tampering and, well, that never happens, does it?