Flames Claim Joey MacDonald


joey macdonald

pic Via Alfred Reloaded

Word on the twitter is the Flames have claimed Detroit Red Wings backup Joey MacDonald off of waivers. The 33-year old has bounced around the majors and minors over this career, most recently with Leafs and Red Wings. With 100 games of NHL under his belt, MacDonald is definitely older and more battle-tested than either Irving or Taylor. On the other hand, his career SV% of .903 in the show and only marginally better results in the AHL suggest he probably isn’t much better than the rookies.

This suggests a couple of things:

1.) Kipper is out for longer than what the team is letting on.

2.) The guys in charge aren’t terribly confident in either Irving or Taylor to carry the ball.

Point number two is fair, although I’m not sure how or why Joey MacDonald adds much comfort. Sure he’s older and has more experience, but that additional information has told us he’s really not all that good a goalie. The only thing I can really stick this decision to is the typical anxiety decision makers get in handing over meaningful minutes to untested commodities like the Flames current goaltending duo. 

The addition of MacDonald also means the club is scraping up against the 50-contract ceiling (49). That’s not a terribly big deal right now, but does cut down on the org’s flexibility should other issues or opportunities pop up later.

Expect one of Taylor or Irving to get re-assigned to Abbotsford as early as today in response to this move.

  • CDB

    I’m flabbergasted that so many people are writing of Danny Taylor without seeing him play 1 minute in a Flames uniform! He was part of the strongest goaltending tandom in the AHL this season with Brust; and remember, he’s the reason Irving was relegated to 3rd string for the Heat last year with his incredible play down the stretch! I’m so disheartened to be reading comments referring to him as waiver fodder. This guy has done everything to deserve his shot with the big club, and for some reason, Joey MacDonald is deemed the better option?!? Feaster needs to give his head a serious shake.

  • RedMan

    this move makes perfect sense, given what’s coming… but, I can’t say anything about that, I promised…

    PS – the flames play amazingly (and consistently) well in front of backup goalies… passing well, not running around, not allowing shot after shot from the slot, paying attention to detail, skating hard… defensively responsible, yep, they do. Really. Uh huh.

    I bet goalies get goosebumps thinking about playing back-up in Calgary, just for sheer joy and excitement.

  • RexLibris

    For Kent and Tach

    The waiver thing is more or less unchanged with players having to go on rosters a step above (claimed on waivers into the ECHL have to go to the AHL at least, similarly with the NHL), and players who then get re-sent through waivers are open to first pick by their former team, just as Taylor Chorney was between St. Louis and Edmonton last season.

    The biggest difference is that if MacDonald were to clear waivers to Abbotsford in a week’s time or so, and then the Flames recalled him, he would not have to clear waivers. The re-entry waiver eligibility has been removed. In other words players can get picked up off demotions but not promotions, the idea being that teams are then more likely to give opportunities to young players because they know they can get them to the roster and teams aren’t going to be pirated in an emergency by predacious waiver claims.

  • CDB

    I am in the camp of this move makes no sense, unless the plan is to give Irving one more shot before being shown the door. You have two pretty well maybe backup goalies on your roster because you had no plan to address your goalie situation for the last 8 years. I get that Macdonald is more ‘experienced’ and older, but he’s been underwhelming everywhere he’s been.

    Why doesn’t this team give Taylor a shot, or hell it could have been Brust, take a look and see what you got. Course this is the Calgary flames, doing things like that is scary, they’d rather lose with an experienced guy that go balls deep with rookies. This is a management team that SCREAMS playing it ‘safe’.

  • thymebalm

    I’m starting to think that “Flames play terrible in front of backups” concept is a myth.

    Are we sure it’s just not a series of bad backups that make the Flames look bad? After all, they’ve all yielded the same results.

    I’m starting to believe it’s a lack of a capable puck stopper, not that the team just decided not to show up for the backup.

  • thymebalm

    I can’t figure this out either. The only way this makes sense to me is this:
    * The Flames had to sign Taylor to an NHL contract.
    * This means that when Kiprusoff returns, they really have to send one of Taylor or Irving down, which means they have to waive the one that they send down.
    * If they pick up MacDonald, they can pull the same double-waiver trick they used in training camp: put two goalies on waivers, on the theory that anyone desperate for a goalie will only take one. Then they can reassign the other one.

    In the reasonable worst case, they still have four goalies: two for the NHL and two for the AHL.

  • icedawg_42

    Maybe Feaster told someone in his staff to “pick up McDonald’s on the way over” and they thought he said “pick up MacDonald on waivers”?

    ^^^^^ Seriously, that joke must’ve been made a hundred times yesterday, right?

    Brust is still on an AHL-only contract, right? There’s nothing that would prevent another NHL team from signing him and giving him a shot in the show, right? What are the odds Toronto takes a shot with one of the AHL’s hottest goalies as a stop-gap while Reimer is out?