Calgary’s Goaltending Options: The Moderate Trade

We’ve already looked at some of the potential blockbuster trade targets the Flames may have this offseason, but in truth there may be other, less “big name” puckstoppers on the market. 

While both Pittsburgh and Tampa may be looking to deal one of their established goaltenders, the truth is both Ben Bishop and Marc-Andre Fleury come with big price tags and noteworthy risks. Both will be expensive to acquire and expensive to retain. The double whammy may force Brad Treliving to look elsewhere.

So who else might be out there? Potential trade partners include the Anaheim Ducks, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, Arizona Coyotes, St. Louis Blues, Colorado Avalanche and Boston Bruins.

The Moderate Trade 

Instead of looking for a surefire fix in net, the Flames may instead look for some sort of stopgap who can plug the hole in the crease between now and when Jon Gillies is ready to challenge for the position. These guys should be less expensive to acquire, but will also be less likely to provide high quality netminding in the interim. 

Trade Pieces: Second round picks (35, 53, 55), third round pick, Joe Colborne, Lance Bouma, Micheal Ferland, Bill Arnold, Mark Jankowski, Oliver Kylington, Emile Poirier, Morgan Klimchuk, Tyler Wotherspoon, Joni Ortio, Mason McDonald.

Moderate Trade Options: Frederik Andersen, Antti Niemi/Kari Lehtonen, Jimmy Howard, Mike Smith, Brian Elliott, Calvin Pickard, Malcolm Subban.  

All of the aforementioned clubs have reasons to move at least one of their puckstoppers. Many of these guys wouldn’t be terribly expensive to acquire, but then most of them aren’t really ideal either. 

The Anaheim Ducks

Except, perhaps, Freddy Andersen. The big, Danish goalie was initially selected in 2010 by the Carolina Hurricanes but went back into the draft in 2012, where the Ducks picked him in the third round. He boasted sparkling numbers both overseas and in the AHL before making the NHL full time last season. The only reason Anaheim wants to move on is they are slightly higher on John Gibson, who is younger and signed at a bargain basement price ($2.3M) until 2019. 

Andersen is a perfect storm of what the Flames are looking for. He’s 26 years old, so in the right age bracket. He has very good results (.925 ES SV%) and a quality pedigree. He is a pending RFA, meaning the Flames would have some control over his next contract (if they acquire him before he’s re-signed). 

The only problem is the Ducks won’t be too keen on trading Andersen within the conference to a close-ish rival. At least, not for cheap. Of the guys listed here, Andersen will definitely command the biggest return. He might be worth it though.

The Dallas Stars

The Stars’ failed goalie platoon strategy is infamous after the pair’s performance against the St. Louis Blues in round two. Considered the Stars’ lone Achilles heal, you can be sure the club will be looking to move on from at least one of Niemi or Lehtonen this summer. 

Kari Lehtonen is 32 and has a $5.9M cap hit. He has also been pretty bad for two seasons running now. Once upon a time he was a consistently decent goaltender, but age and a litany of injuries (including a recent concussion) really seem to have caught up to him.

The one good thing about Lehtonen is his contract only lasts two more seasons. And the Stars would likely eat a chunk of it just to get him off the roster.

Like Lehtonen, Niemi’s deal only stretches until 2018, but he’s down at a more reasonable $4.5M. Niemi is also the same age, but has put up better results recently.

Dashboard 1-12

Not great… but better. 

Neither Dallas goaltender is a very good option from a pure performance perspective. The only reason to consider either of them is because the Stars will be giving them away for pennies on the dollar and their contracts are at the appropriate “stopgap for Gillies” length.

That said, the Flames might just be better off re-signing Ramo.

The Detroit Red Wings

Remember when the Wings as an organization used to avoid paying goalies too much for too long? Jimmy Howard’s current deal is an example of why. Although he provided Detroit with quality goaltending for a few seasons, at 32 years old and $5.3M he’s now just an uncomfortable barrier between the much younger, better and cheaper Petr Mrazek and the starter’s role.

Howard peaked in 2012-13 and has been on the downward slope ever since. His last three seasons have been mediocre at best, culminating in a .906 overall SV% this past year. For context, Karri Ramo finished with a .909. For an added bonus, Howard’s $5.3M price tag lasts another three years, until 2019. 

Like the Stars goalies, Howard would only be a consideration if the Red Wings were more or less giving him away. And eating some of his contract to boot. 

The Arizona Coyotes

Speaking of aging and expensive netminders, 34-year-old Mike Smith of the Coyotes is scheduled to make $6.5M next season and $6.0M the year after that. It’s only the final year of his deal at $5.0M which drags his cap hit down to “just” $5.67M.

That means he’ll be 37 when his deal if over, which is a bad bet for most players and particularly terrible for non-elite goalies. Smith has some good – even very good – seasons under his belt, but he was never a goaltender who ever managed to put it together for any length of time. In fact, his lone truly elite season (2011-12) is what helped get him his current, awful deal. And why the Coyotes are no doubt looking to get him off the books. 

Smith had pretty good numbers last year, albeit in just 32 games in more of a backup role. He had a dreadful season the year before, which has kind of been a pattern for Smith since he broke into the league – a good year followed up by a bad one. At his age it’s a good bet there are more bad seasons than good ones left though.

All of which is to say, he’s not a great option for Calgary either. Smith is aging, expensive and has probably already crossed into the “more of a backup” phase of his career. Like Lehtonen and others already mentioned, he’d be pretty cheap to acquire as a result. 

The St. Louis Blues

Brian Elliott has one of the strangest career paths of any active NHL goaltender. The 31-year-old was chosen in the ninth round by the Senators in 2003. It took him five years to break into the league as a backup for the Sens, a role in which he stayed (and was notably mediocre) until landing in St. Louis in 2011-12… when he suddenly put up an eye popping .940 SV% in 38 games. Since then he’s been the Blues “1B” option, often deployed in tandem with someone else.

Even this season, while putting up a sparkling .930 save rate, Elliott split time with the much younger Jake Allen. Elliott has been the Blues’ starter in the playoffs, however, where he has continued to look well above average.

Which is to say, Elliott is an odd trade target. He’s older, but not too old at 31. He’s also cheap, with just one year left at $2.7M and he’s been well above average for a couple of years running (even though he was mostly below average as a younger man).

The Blues may decide to keep Elliott around for the last year of his deal given his postseason performance. The Flames would likely have to convince St. Louis to part ways with him, though the asking price for him keeps going up the closer they get to the Stanley Cup. 

The Colorado Avalanche

No, I’m not saying the Flames should try to re-acquire Reto Berra. Aside from the former Flame and starter Semyon Varlamov, the Avs boast one of the better young puckstoppers in Calvin Pickard. A second rounder in 2010, Pickard is 24 with a couple of pro seasons under his belt. He appeared in 20 games for the Avalanche this year, posting a respectable .922 SV%. He also managed a .932 save rate for Colorado in 16 games the year before and a .917 SV% the last two seasons at the AHL level. 

Pickard is unlikely to usurp Varlamov from the starter’s role, but he might be vulnerable in the 2017 expansion draft given his age and resume. A pending RFA this summer, Pickard will also be pretty cheap cap hit wise.

Of course, he’s also completely untested as an NHL starter and therefore an unknown commodity. While Pickard’s results to date as a pro are decent, there’s absolutely no guarantee he will be any better than Ortio or what the club could pick up in free agency.

The Boston Bruins

Despite having a young, elite and highly paid starter in Tuukka Rask back in 2012 the Bruins decided to take Malcolm Subban with the 24th overall pick that summer. Today, Subban has three pro seasons under his belt and Rask is… signed for another five years at $7M per season. Hmm.

The middle Subban is also eligible to be swiped in the 2017 expansion draft, which is another reason Boston may want to move him. Malcolm was an above average junior goalie and has been good (but not elite) in the AHL up to this point. At just 22 years old, he also has a lot of room to grow. 

Like Pickard, Subban is more of a gamble since he hasn’t proven anything at the NHL level yet. If the Flames are really looking for a surefire starter, they may not be interested in targeting Subban just yet.

Who To Pick?

Andersen is the clear favourite here, even with an assumed higher price tag than anyone else. A distant second is Brian Elliott, who may not even be on the market come summer. 

Beyond those two guys are a collection of has-beens and hopefuls. Guys like Pickard and Subban will be pricier to acquire, but aren’t really much better bets than Jon Gillies to be legit starters next year. On the other hand, the Flames could get the likes of Smith, Niemi, Howard or Lehtonen for next to nothing, but their best days are behind them. To say nothing of their terrible contracts. 

What Will It Cost?

Too much variance across the board to generalize, but for Andersen the Ducks will charge a relative premium. Two draft picks in the top-60 plus a decent-ish roster player or prospect wouldn’t surprise me. For the old and broken guys, it would be something nominal + cash taken back (or eaten) by the trade partner. For Pickard and Subban, it would be a pick and/or prospect of middling quality.

Conclusion

There’s going to be a lot of moderate goalie trade options on the market this summer, but really only a small handful of them will be of much interest to the Flames. That was true last summer as well and Treliving missed out on the couple of decent targets who changed hands (Martin Jones and Cam Talbot).

The stakes are higher this year. Not only because the club has zero established NHL goaltenders signed, but also because the team is set to exit “rebuild” mode. The Flames can’t be left standing at the alter again this year if they are to move out of the Western Conference basement in 2016-17. 

Calgary Goaltending Options

  • KACaribou

    You can be assured Tree will be focused on a great goalie this year, but not because the the team “is set to exit “rebuild” mode.”

    Tree has used his fire the coach card, now everything rests on him. If his new coach has bad goaltending, and the Flames don’t improve as rapidly as expected it will be his a$$ on the line.

    I like your Anderson option in particular, Kent. But I am concerned that spending too much on goaltending seems to be a recipe for disaster in today’s NHL.

    • #97Train/McDavidCopperfield

      I have always thought that a good goalie can look great playing behind a top defense and if Calgary’s D is as good as people around here think then it shouldn’t be that hard to find a good goalie.
      If they do get a good goalie Calgary’s D needs to show that they are as good on the ice as they are on paper. Last year they put up good numbers offensively after a slow start ,but they could play a lot more consistent in their own end.

      • KACaribou

        You’re 100% correct on this Train. The Flames D is extremely good, but mostly in finding the open man, moving the puck and helping put the disc in the net.

        Defensively, the Flames gave up quality scoring opportunities as a greater rate than teams with inferior defensemen. That’s not great for goaltenders.

        The good news is that they are mostly young, and as the young forwards continue to improve they may be able to concentrate on their own end more and take less chances.

        • freethe flames

          Our top 3 defenders can and will be better with a new coach and a different system. Team defence and a better support system like JJ and Nakdaddy can provide will help. Also NHL average goaltending would help. An NHL goaltender is out there it’s up to BT to make the right choice.

  • The GREAT Walter White

    I’m not against picking up a goalie with a bad contract as long as a bad contract of the same length is going the other way.

    Wideman, Stajan, Raymond, etc.

    The problem is that a lot of our bad contracts have no-trade clauses.

    You didn’t mention Steve Mason….. He should be dirt cheap.

    WW

  • King Quong

    I’m sure it would be trickier to pull off but a 3 way trade for Andersen might be a good idea, just like how san Jose acquired Martin Jones from la via Boston. That way the ducks aren’t trading him in division and hopefully lowers the price.

  • freethe flames

    Kuemper? While he has not played enough games each year to be a proven starter his numbers are better than many on this list; cost of acquiring would be far less as would the cost of signing would also be lower than Andersen. While Andersen is the clear choice he will be the most expensive to acquire and will require a large raise. Elliot is a safer bet as the cost of acquisition will be less and he is signed for one more year.

    It still may be best to acquire one of Reimer or Ward as neither would cost assets; just money.

    Again I think we have to wait for the new coach to be hired and probably nothing happens until draft day.

    • Kevin R

      Andersen would be my choice but the Flames price tag will be much higher than non-divisional teams. I have no idea what the price is, so I really haven’t held too many high hopes on acquiring him.

      I don’t see St Louis making Elliott available. He’s cheap & that tandem is really working for them this year & in the payoffs. The price is going to be way higher because they won’t really want to trade either of their goalies. Expansion draft is a non-issue for the Blues.

      Subban & Pickard seem interesting but very risky for Tre. They really aren’t proven. Now, do we think they are better than Ortio? Then if the price is cheap enough, acquire them as back-up going into next season. Why not & then let Ortio walk, but that is only if you think they are better than Ortio.

      I am leaning toward one of the best before options to bridge a gap to give time to Ortio or Subban or Pickard & especially Gilles. Howard & Smith have too many years left. My criteria should be not to exceed 2 years left on the contracts coming in. That leaves Niemi & Lehtonen. I’m leaning to Niemi. He’s won a Cup & could pull off what Hiller did in his 1st year with us. Best of all, he could buy us time, don’t have to protect him for any expansion draft & we could slide Wideman back.

      Conclusion: I would like to see Tre acquire Subban for Klimchuk & a 3rd & move Wideman to Dallas (Im sure Wideman wouldn’t mind going to a team like the Stars) straight across for Niemi. Re-sign Nakladal. See how things shake out & if need be, go whale hunting for the goalie position next summer. Just my humble opinion.

      • freethe flames

        I had mentioned a Niemi for Wideman deal on another thread a few days ago as part of a package deal. The first year we get the savings and the next year he costs us, if he bombs he can be bought out.

        I mention Keumper not because I really want him but I want to explore all options. I don’t think we want to get to attached to any of the b options but what they do is give time for Gilles or one of the others a chance to develop. If we signed a Ward I would not want a long term deal 2 years at most and Reimer 3 years at most.

        I am hoping that when BT gets home that we see Nakladal resigned and get the kids contracts finished. I would also like to see Grant get resigned before the UFA market opens. Most of the RFA’s will get done through qualification offers so I don’t worry about them. This period of time before the draft leads to a lot of speculation(which can be fun) but not a lot of real actions.

        There are a lot of ways to upgrade this team over the next few months and while getting the goal tender is essential it is not the only item of business. I am hoping that ownership has approved buyouts as an option.

        • Kevin R

          Not really sold on Keumper. He so reminds me of Turek. Before Minny acquired Dubynk, Kuemper got off to an amazing start of the season. He was the hottest goalie in our hockey pool, I think he had like 4-5 shutouts by end of November & looked to be the steal of the draft. By March, he fell & some poor slob traded for him in our pool & gave up Price in the package & lost that trade horribly. Since then, Keumper hasn’t really shined at all. He’s probably better than my hockey pool tainted version of him but I would rather have Niemi.

      • Baalzamon

        move Wideman to Dallas (Im sure Wideman wouldn’t mind going to a team like the Stars) straight across for Niemi.

        Dallas can’t add cap. Bringing in Wideman interferes with their ability to re-sign Goligosky and Demers, who are both better than Wideman (to say nothing of Kris Russell, who they overpaid to get in the first place).

        If Dallas trades either Niemi or Lehtonen, it’ll be as a cap dump. Otherwise, they’d buy one of them out before trading him for Wideman.

        • Kevin R

          Dallas has basically 2 D signed for next year & 1 yeoman type D. Moving a goalie like Niemi for a guy like Wideman kills two birds with 1 stone. Klingberg is basically their only main PP guy, so Wideman on their PP unit makes sense. He also has no impact on their cap ($750K difference).
          Seems to me depending on the asking prices of their UFA’s in Gologoski, Russell & Demers, it takes some pressure off having to meet their demands. Just saying, if Niemi came to us as a salary dump, then Nichushkin is coming back to sweeten that up if Im not sending salary back. Just saying. Klimchuk & their 2nd back for Niemi & Nichushkin would be totally palatable to me. I think the Wideman straight up for Niemi would be more attractive to the Stars. I think the deal makes sense for both. Would rather take Niemi than Halak. Heck I would be OK with going into next year with Niemi & Ortio as well.

  • GodsGotSandals

    When the expansion draft is announced I think the longer we wait the cheaper goalies get. Of course this leaves room for someone else to trade for our first choice but still maybe it’s worth waiting.

  • madjam

    Seeing as your looking to deal in division , how about a blockbuster with Oilers .

    To the Flames : Talbot , Pouliot , Hopkins , Yakupov and trade of 6th to 4th spot in draft . To the Oilers : 2 additional 2nd round picks , Giordano or Hamilton , Colbourne , Bouma , Ferland and Backlund . Who wins that deal , or do they both ?

    • #97Train/McDavidCopperfield

      Edmonton hasn’t had a number 1 goalie in years . Now we have him we are not going to give the only number 1 goalie in Alberta to Calgary.

      • Stu Cazz

        Scary when Oiler fans consider Talbot a number 1 goalie…regardless Oilers will have huge challenges in trading any of their assets because of chronic losing mentality that will be difficult to overcome….value has been greatly diminished…

    • Kevin R

      Me head started to hurt trying to digest this size of trade. I see the merit in the deal but quite frankly, being a flame fan I would not want to do anything to help the Oilers get back on the right track, unless it’s for a ridiculous overpay. Kind of the same thinking of why Anaheim would never ever trade us Andersen & why the Canucks took less before even thinking of trading you Schneider. Fan bases from both cities would revolt a blockbuster deal of that magnitude.

      • madjam

        No trade is possible if either team gets hosed . Not tolling either as Flames my second favorite club next to Oilers . I believe my trades makes both clubs better . Seeing as this a Flame site here is what Flames might get by the blockbuster trade .

        A good starter at a real nice price and contract length of 4M in Talbot . Ortio as a backup saves Flames a lot of money .

        Look at your forward lineup with those additions and probably #4 pick with them being perhaps Tkachuk or Dubois .

        Frolik , Bennett , Monahan, Gaudreau , Joorish , Stajan , Hopkins , Pouliot and Yakupov whom is cheap @ 2.5M , good on powerply and may pan out well with new linemates in Calgary . That is one good looking forward group far better than what you have now . Biggest drawback for Oilers is them getting two more goalies once again at a price near what Talbot cost . Oilers also need a second round pick to give to Boston for Chia . They might go for it if Flames gave up their 33rd I believe . If any team getting close to losing that deal , I would say Oilers might .

        • cberg

          Madjam, an Oiler blockbuster might solve a lot of problems on both sides, its just that when you break down the details the deal is weighted way too far in the Oilers favour, which is not unexpected because you’re an Oiler fan first. The number of players involved obscures the reality of the deal which has its benefits but also makes it almost impossible to achieve. Finally, with Talbot being a key to the trade, there is zero reasons to be believe the Oilers will trade him away as they have zero prospects to fill the need and then would be in the exact same place as the Flames, with no starter, having already dumped several of their prime trade chips and only securing a great #1D in the process.

          To the Flames : Talbot , Pouliot , Hopkins , Yakupov and trade of 6th to 4th spot in draft . To the Oilers : 2 additional 2nd round picks , Giordano or Hamilton , Colbourne , Bouma , Ferland and Backlund.

          To further the comments about value: Yakupov, I wouldn’t trade any of the Flames, nor any 2nd for him straight up. 6th to 4th not worth a lot as after the top3 the next three all about equal. There is some value in having the choice, but not much, perhaps a 2nd. Backlund-RNH about a saw-off. Pouliot-Colborne about a saw-off.

          So, in reality your suggestion boils down to Talbot from the Oilers in exchange for Giordano/Hamilton & Bouma & Ferland. As you you can see its a non-starter suggestion. For a true elite-level #1D alone it will cost the Oilers Talbot/RNH plus at least two of the other assets.

          So, let’s say Giordano for Talbot, Yakupov and trade of 6th for 4th, the best possible scenario for the Oilers. That leaves Pouliot and Hopkins for 2 2nds & Colborne & Bouma & Ferland & Backlund. Again a non-starter suggestion, not going to happen, even in NHL16.

  • BlueMoonNigel

    No one has dissuaded me yet from the idea of Ortio and Ramo in 2016-17. Ortio played well in all the meaningless games he played this season to warrant another contract. Ramo had been playing pretty solidly for an extended period until his season ended.

    The premise of keeping both is that Jon-Jon might very well be the Flames goalie of the future. I doubt that future starts in 2016-17 considering his lost season.

    Moreover, it would be a cost saver at a time when the team is experiencing a cap crunch. Ortio won’t cost much and neither will Ramo.

    I don’t like the idea of bringing in an aging and ineffective old netminder even if it means an exchange of bad contracts. Three years of Jimmy Howard isn’t going to cut it even if it meant the end of Stajan, Raymond and Double B as Flames.

    The FA pool of goalies doesn’t make my heart beat fast.

    Do the Flames really know what they have in Ortio? I say they don’t. Why not roll with him in 2016-17 to see what they got in him? He may be the answer, and if he is, he isn’t going to break the bank. Maybe he will prove ineffective as a starter but more than capable as a Scott Darling-like backup. Then the following season the Flames go with Jon-Jon as the starter and Ortio as his second.

    Then there is the expansion draft. Let’s say the Flames get the Great Dane and have Ortio backing him up. Let’s also say Frederick struggles mightily in 2016-17 but Ortio plays better than expected. Who do you protect in the draft? The guy you paid a lot for or the backup? Makes no sense to go out and get a named goalie without first knowing what you have in Ortio with an expansion draft looming.

    Finally, related to the expansion draft. If the Ortio/Ramo duo prove a bust next season, there will be no problem picking up a named goalie during the season or after it ends and before the expansion draft.

    In short, Ortio is the wildcard in the Flames’ crease. He could be the future number one or Jon-Jon’s backup. Perhaps he will be a total bust who will be playing for China’s KHL team in 2017-18. Flames will not know what they have in Ortio by trading for Howard or Nemi or by signing a Cameron Ward. See what you have in Ortio and then decide.

    • freethe flames

      For a change I agree with you; Ortio is indeed the wild card and I’m not sure what to make of him. Ramo on the other hand is coming off a serious injury and surgery and will likely not be ready for the season. You can’t start the season without another NHL goalie.Actually with Wards health issues you might see enough of Ortio to know.

      • Baalzamon

        Wards health issues you might see enough of Ortio to know.

        Except that Ward blows, so there would be no purpose to pursuing him. I’d feel better about a possibly still-recovering Ramo than a completely healthy Ward.

        • freethe flames

          Exploring every option as I’m sure the Flames are and if they have come to that conclusion then I’m okay with that. I have my preference but I like to try and keep all options open and think about the costs in assets and salary cap issues. Way to many ideas floated out here that don’t really take all of these ideas into account.

          • Baalzamon

            Okay, but there’s doing that, then there’s proposing things for the sake of proposing things. You should probably take the potential benefit into account. If there’s no benefit to making a move, then there’s no point to making said move. Or even suggesting it.

            You want it to be a discussion? Here it is:

            How about Cam Ward?

            No, he sucks.

            End of discussion.

          • cberg

            Very true, but the same can be said of virtually all the goalies mentioned in the article. Except for Anderson they all suck and are worse than keeping what we already have.

        • Hubcap1

          Our FIRST? I don’t think so.

          I had suggested 3 good future pieces in a good forward prospect, 2nd(not concerned which one), and McDonald. All three don’t require protection in a 2017 expansion draft, as well a goaltending prospect that Anaheim lacks.

          • freethe flames

            The Sharks gave up a first and a prospect for Jones and his career numbers were not as good overall as Andersen. It’s also in the division and that’s why it’s a premium. If we could get him for a second, a forward and mcDonald then I would be over the moon but it’s not going to happen.

          • Baalzamon

            Yes, but prior to that, Jones was traded along with a first round pick and a prospect for Milan Lucic. The trade to San Jose was widely considered an overpay (granted, it worked out rather well for them in retrospect).

            The other goalies moved last summer were Eddie Lack (for a third and a seventh) and Cam Talbot (for a late second, a third, and a seventh). Both of them had better track records than Jones, and weren’t much older.

          • freethe flames

            Both outside of their division. If you are suggesting we could get Andersen from the Ducks for the Lack deal or the Talbot deal I would be excited. I just don’t think it happens.

          • Hubcap1

            That is a late first, not much better than our 2nd, as well the prospect was Sean (who) Kuraly a former 5th rounder who is 23. No comparison with my proposal.

  • freethe flames

    Again I’m just trying to stir up conversation but here is a chart comparing Kuemper and Andersen and it’s clear that Andersen is the better option but at what cost. If the cost is close you have to go with Andersen but if it’s worlds apart, then is it not an option to explore and discuss.

    Kuemper Andersen
    21 games /2.43 GA/9.15save% 43 games/2.30 ga/9.19
    31 games/2.60 GA/9.05 save % 54 games/2.38 ga/9.14
    26 games/2.43 ga/9.15 save % 28 games/2.29 ga/9.23

  • Baalzamon

    Let’s talk goalies. How do we evaluate them?

    War-on-ice has an attempt. They graphically arrange players by adjusted and unadjusted save percentage in an effort to correct for team quality.

    What do we know from this graph? James Reimer is, by far, the best option anyone has suggested.

    Edit- that was supposed to be filtered to Ramo, Ortio, Niemi, Lehtonen, Howard, Ward, Pickard, Andersen, and Reimer, but apparently WOI doesn’t have that capability on their goalie page

  • freethe flames

    My top 2 choices would be Reimer and Johnson because both are UFA’s and there would be no cost to acquire them. After that I am in the Andersen camp but only if the cost is not prohibitive. After that there are lots of lesser alternatives. My maximum cap hit and term remain constant $3-4m by 3 years. Plus Ortio at less than $!m.

  • Stu Cazz

    Word out of New York is that the Flames and Islanders are taking Halak to the Flames. Isles want draft picks not players. Sounds like Calgary’s 2nd and perhaps 6th….

      • Stu Cazz

        Sports hernia….Greiss is their man so he is on his way out. Friendly contract and term.

        I also think the Flames will bring in more than 1 established goalie. As well as Ortio has played they will bring in plenty of solid competition for him as a back up…

  • MarbledBlueCheese

    The only way we should be entertaining Niemi or Lehtonen is if it comes with a huge incentive to take that cap dump on for a team in win-now mode. This would keep our goaltending at league-worst levels for the duration of their playing days here (behind the Stars offense their goaltenders had amongst league-worst metrics).

    I’m not sure even Nichushkin and a good pick make this a good idea, never mind if they give away one of these guys for free.

  • madjam

    Most of Flame Nations suggestions for a goalie is the same as Oilers for a backup goalie to Talbot . Seems to me Ramo and Hiller are as good if not better than what you are setting your sites on .

  • smatic10

    At first I really hated the idea of Ortio-Ramo going into next season. But it’s starting to make some sense now. A large reason why we had atrocious goaltending last year was a lack of defensive identity. The dmen were running around all over the place under Hartley’s watch. A new coach that can introduce some defensive structure would indirectly improve our goaltending numbers. With average goaltending and new systems, we can perhaps be a playoff team again. I’m not too keen on spending a hefty price for any of the goaltenders listed to be honest, it can certainly hurt us in the long run. And with the uncertainty surrounding an expansion draft, it’s probably best not to make too many bold moves right now.

    WIth all that being said, if we’re letting one of our goalies walk, Reimer would be my first choice as a replacement.

  • Koolmoedee

    According to Eric Duhatschek, Fleury might be available for cheap. The Penguins are already at the projected salary cap for next year and an expansion draft would force them to give up Murray.

    Fleury has a no-movement clause so they would be forced to protect him and expose Murray if both were still on the team by next summer.

    The only way to keep Murray — their goalie of the future — would be to get Fleury to waive his no-movement clause and trade him.