The NHL's UFA market might is not the best place to go for GMs looking to add a blockbuster player at this point. In reading over Luke Fox's Sportsnet article from Friday, where he provides a subjective top-ten list of UFAs remaining, it's clear that there isn't much out there anymore. However, #Thomas Vanek appears to be the brightest star in the UFA market.

Vanek appears as the No. 2 pick on Fox's list, behind Andrei Markov. Markov is 38 years old and he headlined a list of players, most of which have more years behind them in the NHL than in front of them. Jaromir Jagr is 45, Mike Fisher is 37, Brian Campbell is 38, Mark Streit is 39, Brian Gionta is 38, and Jarome Iginla is 40.

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The ages don't mean everything, but they do add risk to any signing. The risk has to do with injury or just an aging player having a drop-off year.

Vanek was good in Detroit

With Vanek, there are two sets of stats that could be looked at with his last season. The 33-year old split time between the Detroit Red Wings and the Florida Panthers. Vanek, in 48 games with Detroit last season, was a 0.79 points-per-game player. When he shifted over to Florida in an early-March trade he was called the "ingredient that (would) help the Florida Panthers return to the Stanley Cup Playoffs" (NHL.com/March 1st, 2017/Tim Campbell). In 20 games he ended up with an assists-heavy 10 points. While he was on the good side of the plus/minus stat while with the Red Wings, he went -7 over the course of just 20 games while with the Panthers.

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The time with Detroit is definitely interesting. Here's a team that was second last in the Atlantic Division and that ended up -37 on the entire year for goal differential. Yet Vanek found a way to stay positive on plus/minus while with the club and he posted a points-per-game average that would have held up to place in the top 50 if not for the fact that it got diluted in Florida.

On that note, the Florida Panthers were a terrible team down the stretch of the regular season. Vanek is mixed in with that, but abrupt changes in scenery can be difficult. At the start of March, the Panthers were 29-23-1, but they won just four games during the month. That effectively took them out of playoff contention and Vanek's declined stats have to be attributed to the abrupt change and playing within a slumping team's system.

Vanek might get paid big

Vanek is only 33 years old and, in a market that's loaded with old or ancient players, it's looking like he is on the young side. Forget the 38-year-old Markov and his $6M a year demands. Vanek is the guy that's going to get a good contract because he's the only player still in his prime that has top-40 scoring potential in the next season. He might end up a little overpaid, but any GM that wants to improve without trading or without signing a guy over 37 should be very attracted to the forward. #Points Per Game #Unrestricted Free Agent