We all knew Vesa Toskala wouldn’t be a member of the Calgary Flames for this upcoming season, as GM Darryl Sutter said as much following the season. However, it now seems Vesa won’t find employment period in the NHL, as various reports have him bolting for the Swedish Elite League.
Don’t know how many people were really clamouring for his return to Calgary for this season, even though his results weren’t terrible in his short stint here. In fact, he posted a 2-0 record with the Flames, and finished with a 9-12-3 record overall split between Toronto and Calgary (he was also with the Ducks for a short time). His third start came on March 21st, where he let in three goals on 12 shots before getting the hook…however, Miikka Kiprusoff would end up taking the loss in that game. His performance that afternoon seemed to lower the confidence of the coaching staff when it came to using him, as he didn’t start again.
Probably a few reasons why Toskala is headed across the Atlantic. First, the feeling was he wanted to be a number one guy in the NHL. It wasn’t exactly a goalies market this summer, as Toskala’s former teammate Evgeni Nabokov realized early. Nabby’s bolt to Russia kind of set the stage for the lack of big money offers on former number ones this off season.
Second, his reported Swedish destination (Farjestad) is in need of a goaltender. Robin Rahm was given a two year ban from hockey after testing positive for a banned substance, so it meant a search was on. Probably wouldn’t be a stretch to think Farjestad made a pretty sweet offer to bring Toskala in.
Good luck Vesa, we hardly knew thee in Calgary. Not like all that many will be reaching for the tissue box.