Free agency starts on July 1st, and the ensuing mayhem is usually quite exciting and/or terrifying. For many fans who are the type to read blogs like this, you're already a die-hard. You know every big name UFA this season and why he would be an awesome/horrific idea to sign. Then there's the others - the casuals who just want to know who the Wings ends up signing and what position they play. Bonus if they're from Sweden. If you're in the latter category, this handy little guide may be right up your alley. No boring stats, no in-depth analysis, no deep philosophical arguments over what a hypothetical signing really means to the future of this organization. Nope, we're going to compare a ton of big-name UFAs to fast-food chains. Let's do this.
Marian Gaborik: In-N-Out
. Trendy and exciting establishment from out west that you may occasionally fantasize about, but in reality you know it isn't coming to Detroit anytime soon.
Brad Richards: Taco Bell
. It really only sounds like a good idea at 2am when your standards and judgment are suspiciously low.
Matt Niskanen: Panera
. It always feels a tad overrated and overpriced, and you always find yourself wishing there was a little bit more of it for the price you're paying. Despite that, it's still a lot better than most of the other junk on this list, and you've got some money to spend from your recent pay raise, so why not splurge a little.
Anton Stralman: Five Guys
. It used to be that super trendy burger joint that you told all your friends about, then it made it all the way to the Stanley Cup
Finals, opened up way more locations, and overall became way more popular. It's still good, but you don't feel quite as slick and cool for liking it as you once did.
Ville Leino: Local place that never got any business and yet somehow stayed open for years before mercifully going under
. You always suspected it was a front for the local mafia and/or Walter White. It probably was. It finally got shut down by either economics or the local police, and now it's basically just the place where the local teenagers go to buy weed.
Thomas Vanek: Chick-Fil-A
. It's definitely pretty good, certainly one of the better options. Unfortunately it just never shows up when you need it most, like on a Sunday afternoon or during the playoffs. Also seems highly unlikely to end up in Detroit this summer.
Ryan Callahan: Wendy's
. Originated in the Midwest and is utterly average despite being priced like it's above-average.
Kyle Quincey: McDonald's
. You don't necessarily go out of your way to choose McDonald's, sometimes you just end up getting it by default if all the better options seem too expensive. If you're honest, you kinda like having McDonald's around as an easy target to hate on, even though it's really just consistently underwhelming rather than outright terrible. Well, except for all those times they messed up your order, and it ended up in the back of the net.
Dan Boyle: Burger King
. At one point it was the nicer and better alternative to McDonald's, but now you go in and it's kinda old, beaten down, and another concussion waiting to happen. It still has that PP Production meal on the menu that you could really go for right about now, but you have a nagging fear you may regret eating there.
Tom Gilbert: Zaxby's
. Super underrated option from down south that is surprisingly good quality for its fair price, but a surprising amount of your friends know almost nothing about it. Very few people will get excited about it, and it's not the top option out there, but for (probably) just a couple million a year it has great potential to be a steal.
Ryan Miller: White Castle.
It sounds like a better idea than it actually is. Plus there are holes in it.
Daniel Cleary: stale bag of chips you got from a really sketchy gas station when desperate and then you got mugged at knife-point when you tried to leave
. Just go hungry next time.