OK Salo is pretty much done as an Oiler within a few short months so we need another guy to go with Conks next year. Tommy has been arguably the worst goalie in the NHL this year (WLT 4-7-3 GAA 3.32 SP.867). JDD is way too young for the job as he needs at least 2 years in the AHL before he is ready for even a backup role. In my mind our ideal candidate for next year is a guy 22-24 years old with a few years in the minors who is ready to make the next step as part of a tandem with Conks. I’ve excluded guys like Lehtonen and Toivanen because of age and unavailability. So the candidates are:
NAME TEAM GP W L T GA GAA SV%
Bryzgalov, Ilya CIN 23-11-10-2 2.08 .922 (available but I doubt we’re dealing with the Duck)
Miller, Ryan ROC 19-8-7-4 1.76 .941 (untouchable – holy **** look at those numbers)
Emery, Ray BIN 18-8-7-2 2.37 .917 (probably available for the right player to help Ottawa in the playoffs)
Leclaire, Pascal SYR 16-7-6-1 2.68 .924 (maybe because Columbus has Denis but I doubt he’s available)
Ouellet, Maxime POR 21-6-14-1 2.40 .918 (untouchable because Kolzig is getting older and playing poorly)
Blackburn, Dan NYR– injured (hard to say if he’s available but his stock has dropped)
There are also a few NHL guys available – but frankly the there are not many guys around who fit our needs.
Martin Gerber ANA 14-6-4-2 2.12 .927 (older and again we are not dealing with the Ducks)
Mika Noronen BUF 17-6-8 0 2.21 .916 (may be available but Buffalo certainly wants to dump Biron instead)
Martin Biron BUF 17-6-8-2 2.87 .895 (he’s a little older and has bad stats but his situation looks like Salo’s before he came to Edmonton – would be very cheap to obtain)
OK so there are not that many guys who fit our needs and are actually available to us. I figure that Emery and Blackburn is the only quality younger prospects who may actually be available to us. Biron is certainly up for grabs but the Ducks goalies are certainly not available after the Comrie situation went down and they probably would not deal with us anyway.
My favorite deals would be:
1 - Salo and the Philly 3rd in 2005 we have to Buffalo for Biron at the trade deadline (the salary difference for the rest of the year would be small by the deadline and the Sabres could just decline Salo’s option in the summer. So basically it’s Biron for a 3rd round pick. This only works if the Oil actually think Biron may respond to a new environment (and I’m not sure about that).
2 – Laraque and the Philly 3rd rounder in 2005 for Emery. Sens fans will go blah blah blah about Emery’s value – but the market has shown over and over that goalies like him are worth a 2nd round pick. Laraque certainly helps Ottawa in the playoffs and we almost dealt him there last year so there is interest.
3– Laraque and the Philly 3rd rounder in 2005 for Blackburn. Same deal as for Emery but we would have to see if Blackburn comes back from his injury. Who knows if Slats would go for this (Big Georges in the Big Apple?)
How about John Grahame, Mathieu Garon, Cristobal Huet, or Zac Bierk?
I highly doubt the Habs will give up Garon, I really dont see Huet going anywhere as he's looked impressive for LA..I doubt Bierk will be dealt, he'll probably be a backup to Boucher, soon, cause Burke isn't getting any younger, in fact he's 36 (he'll be 37 in a month) & wouldn't be suprised if he decided to retire after this season, especially with a pending lock-out next season.
Who knows really? Garon, I personally believe, can be a very good starting goaltender in the league but he'll NEVER get the chance in Montreal unless Theodore gets injured and Garon takes his spot.
Another tender that falls into this category is Ari Ahonen from New Jersey. He's not going to get a shot in New Jersey because of a little guy named Martin Brodeur.
Those are two guys that, if I was Lowe, I would definitely inquire about.
your right he wont get a shot in Montreal, but he's a very good back-up goalie, & if Theodore "is off his game" they can go to Garon knowing they'll get a good performance..kinda like what we're doing in Edmonton. right now we're alternating goalies, but cause we know Conklin has proven himself & we know he'll provide steady goaltending. I think we could pick up a pretty good inexpensive goalie in the off-season, if we cant get one at the draft. since the Oilers will likely decline Salo's option, that's 3.9 mil we could work with right there & Jason Smith likely getting dealt at the deadline or NHL draft thats another 2.3 mil..& a total of 6.2 mil.