The NHL has become more like the NBA as teams look to build around free agents, yes there are still trades and the draft, but for franchises looking for a quick fix, signing a couple of proven veterans is the fastest way to get a team back into contention.
This year a number of talented players will look for some big money and in some cases a move to a team that can win a Stanley Cup. Here is a look at the top centers that could help a team next season.
Olli Jokinen from Calgary had another terrific season as he scored 61 points this season for the Flames. The 33-year-old has scored at least 50 points for nine straight years and would give a boost to any team looking for some offense.
The youngster player on this list is 22-year-old Sam Gagner from Edmonton. The youngster is a restricted free agent, but he will get plenty of attention this summer. Gagner has five years of experience under his belt and has over 40 points in every year in the league. The Oilers will likely match any offer for their young center, but GMs around the NHL would love to have the youngster on their team next season.
These are just two of the top centers available this year, but several other quality players will make an impact this off-season. Teams like Toronto are trying to break a long drought of missing the playoffs and moves to acquire these talented players is necessary to break that streak.