As we get closer and closer to the February 29 National Hockey League trade deadline, there will be some reports trickling out here and there about players being targeted by the Calgary Flames. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman mentioned one during tonight’s Headlines segment during Hockey Night in Canada.
According to Friedman, the Flames have inquired about the availability of Pittsburgh Penguins goalie prospect Matt Murray.
In short: Murray, 21, is a damn fine goaltender.
Originally drafted by the Penguins in the third round of the 2012 NHL Draft (after a pretty solid OHL tenure with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds), he’s presently playing with the American Hockey League’s Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, where he’s put up really impressive numbers over the past two seasons:
- 2014-15 (20 years old): 25-10-3 with a 1.58 goals against average and a .941 save percentage
- 2014-15 (21 years old): 19-9-1 with a 2.11 goals against average and a .931 save percentage
Murray’s splitting time with former Edmonton Oil Kings netminder Tristan Jarry, and he also has pretty great numbers as a first-year pro (11-3-2, 2.04 goals against average, .929 save percentage). He played four games with Pittsburgh this season, going 2-1-0 with a 1.77 goals against average and .938 save percentage.
It doesn’t shock me that the Flames are reportedly asking about Murray. He’s absolutely excellent, and the thought process is probably that since the Penguins have Marc-Andre Fleury signed long term and also have Jarry in the AHL that they may be open to moving Murray to upgrade another position.
For what it’s worth, Friedman also mentioned during Headlines that teams are being told that Murray is not available. But don’t be too shocked if the Flames make a move to set up their goaltending for next season (and going forward from there).
Is Murray the answer in net for the Flames? Or would the price necessary to land him be too steep? Sound off in the comments!