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CANUCKS MAKE MESSIER A FREE-AGENT OFFER

New York Rangers captain Mark Messier, an unrestricted free agent, is considering an $18 million, three-year contract offer from the Vancouver Canucks, the New York Daily News reported.

Messier is still in negotiations with the Rangers and has narrowed his choices to, among others, Washington, Chicago and Montreal.

New York's original offer to Messier, its leading goal-scorer last year with 33, was one-year, $4 million. The Daily News reported the Rangers won't match Vancouver's offer.

In other hockey news: John Spano, the would-be savior whose deal to purchase the New York Islanders fell apart, will surrender this week on fraud charges tied to his ill-fated attempt to buy the franchise, according to a published report. Spano, who was reportedly vacationing in the Cayman Islands, planned to surrender today at U.S. District Court in Long Island, according to the New York Daily News. Prosecutors declined to comment.

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