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Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Buyout would make Philly's Briere an unrestricted free agent

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Forward Danny Briere is preparing to become an unrestricted free agent as part of the Philadelphia Flyers' off-season shakeup of their high-priced roster.

A person familiar with discussions confirmed on Wednesday that Briere has been informed by the Flyers that they intend to buy out the final two years of his contract. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the Flyers have not announced their decision.

ESPN.com first reported Briere's pending buyout Tuesday evening.

The move will shave $6.5 million off the Flyers' salary cap. Philadelphia had one of the NHL's most expensive payrolls last season, and has been forced into a position to shed salary in order to get under next season's cap, which will drop from $70.2 million to $64.3 million.

Under NHL rules, teams have the option of two amnesty buyouts to terminate contracts before the start of the 2014-15 season.

The Flyers are still on the hook to pay Briere two-thirds -- about $3.3 million -- of the $5 million the player was owed as part of the eight-year, $52 million contract he signed in free agency on July 1, 2007.

Briere is a 15-year NHL veteran, who had six goals and 10 assists in 34 games last season. He's a seven-time 25-goal scorer, but his production has tailed off as a result of various injuries, including a concussion and a broken wrist.

The Flyers have already begun retooling their roster after agreeing to sign newly acquired defenceman Mark Streit to a four-year, $21 million contract. Philadelphia acquired Streit last week in a trade with the New York Islanders.

 

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition June 20, 2013 D5

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