June 5, 2013; Boston, MA USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Andrew Ference (21) pokes the puck away from Pittsburgh Penguins left wing Chris Kunitz (14) during the first period in game three of the Eastern Conference finals of the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

NHL Roundup: Your Morning Links


Welcome to your NHL Roundup, a daily edition that provides you with your Morning Links on the happenings around the NHL.  There might not be action on the ice but there’s plenty happening off of it. Let’s get to it.

The Penguins have re-signed winger Chris Kunitz to a three-year deal, making it even less likely now that defenseman Kris Letang will be retained:

The Pittsburgh Penguins continued a busy off-season Thursday, signing forward Chris Kunitz to a three-year contract extension.

The deal, which kicks in at the start of the 2014-15 season, has an average annual value of 3.85 million,according to the club.

This signing comes two weeks after the club signed franchise center Evgeni Malkin to a long-term deal. The club, however, still faces some major roster decisions, including what to do with defenseman Kris Letang, who was a Norris Trophy finalist and is in the final year of his deal.

Boston, fresh off it’s Stanley Cup Final loss, will not re-sign Jaromir Jagr, Andrew Ference, or Jay Pandolfo in hopes of freeing up cap space to sign others:

The Boston Bruins announced Wednesday, two days after losing to the Blackhawks, that they will not bring back at least three and potentially more players from this past season’s team.

The biggest name that won’t be returning is Jaromir Jagr, who was acquired early in the season as insurance and back-up support.

But with Jagr set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 5 and seeking a contract equal to his most current $6 million per season pact, the Bruins have decided to bid adieu to him — and whatever money he might ask for.

Tampa Bay will be exercizing a buyout on center Vincent Lecavalier’s deal, which still has 7 years and $45M left:

The Tampa Bay Lightning are parting ways with their longest-serving player, as the club will buy out the rest of Vincent Lecavalier‘s 11-year, $85 million contract.

“Vinny has been a significant reason for many of our past successes, including the 2004 Stanley Cup, and his contributions to the community are immeasurable,” said general Steve Yzerman in a statement on Thursday. “The Lightning organization is indebted to Vinny; we thank him for all he has done here and we wish him well as he moves forward.

And lastly, just What the Hell Happened to Martin Straka?

Sometimes they sneak up on you and sometimes they’ve been there all along, just needing a little bit of time before they take the league by storm and fulfill the potential their team (or former teams) always thought they had.

Martin Straka is the case of a guy who just needed to leave town before he could figure it all out.

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Tags: Boston Bruins Chris Kunitz Martin Straka NHL Pittsburgh Penguins Tampa Bay Lightning Vincent Lecavalier