Antropov joins Kovy in Atlanta; defensemen mystery on Day 2

Some thoughts and notes on Day 2 of the Free Agent Frenzy. Remember to check out our Puck Daddy Chatter Box for breaking news and rumors.

• The New York Rangers shot down Nik Antropov's demands for a long-term deal, but in the end he may have found a better fit. He goes to the Atlanta Thrashers for four years and $16 million, with GM Don Waddell saying (video) that Antropov will play on Ilya Kovalchuk's line next season: "He played with Ilya during the work stoppage. Ilya knows him well." (Then he has a good sense of his speed. Or lack thereof.)

Antropov had a base salary of $2.15 million last season between the Rangers and the Toronto Maple Leafs. Overall, pretty good couple of days for the Thrashers in re-signing Chris Thorburn (no terms) and acquiring defenseman Pavel Kubina from the Leafs. Waddell told the team's Web site that he felt the team didn't need to add a large number of new players but instead a few "special" ones. How one feels about a couple of former Leafs will probably dictate how one feels about that mission being accomplished.

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• The big story on Day 2, however, is the lack of stories when it comes to two big-name defensive defensemen: Francois Beauchemin and Rob Scuderi.

Dave Pagnotta of TFP told us that "Anaheim, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, Dallas and Buffalo" are among the teams in for Beauchemin; that was before the Dallas Stars added defenseman Karlis Skrastins from the Florida Panthers for $2.75 million over two years (per TSN, and more from Heika).

As for Scuderi, Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review had some interesting news as Pittsburgh Penguins fans wait it all out:

Add the Kings to a list of teams in the hunt for D Rob Scuderi. Minnesota and the Penguins also remain in the hunt, but I'm told the Kings are above $3 million annually on a long-term deal. That Scuderi hasn't accepted yet proves either: A) he is legitimately torn given the Penguins offer ($2 million annually at four or five years), of B) he, like other NHL players, can't make enough to head west.

Judging from the plight of the Los Angeles Kings during Day 1, perhaps it's the latter. Note that defenseman Adrian Aucoin signed with the Phoenix Coyotes for one year and $2.5 million (per TSN), just to get a sense of the market.

Mark Recchi re-signed with the Boston Bruins for one year and $1 million. Joe Haggerty of WEEI points out the vital cap info: "[The signing] leaves the Bruins with roughly $4.3 million in cap space with the need to sign/or trade both RFAs Phil Kessel and Matt Hunwick." More moves on the way, one imagines.

• Finally, Michael Russo of the Star Tribune has been on the Saku Koivu watch for 48 hours, and put this on his Twitter feed: "Wild still trying hard on Koivu; problem I'm hearing is term and the desire of Koivu, 34, for a lot of it."

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