The NHL goalie trade market is hot, and there could be a few goalies changing addresses this summer. While the free agent market is thin for netminders, there should be a number of buyers and sellers this off-season for the masked men.
NHL Goalie Trade Market
The St. Louis Blues have both Jake Allen and Brian Elliott under contract for one more year. In 2017, Elliott becomes an unrestricted free agent and Allen is restricted. Allen turns 26-years-old this summer and is coming off a strong season. He had a 2.35 goals against average and a .920 save percentage. Elliott, who recently turned 31, was even better. He had 2.07 goals against average and a .930 save percentage in the regular season.
As the Blues have serious salary cap issues, they could keep both goalies for next season but it would only make sense to at least listen to what they could receive in a trade for either netminder. One would think St. Louis would prefer to keep Allen since he is much younger and has many years ahead of him.
Frederik Andersen has been a top flight goalie for the Anaheim Ducks the last three seasons. Andersen, who will be 27 come opening night next season, had a 2.30 goals against average last season, along with a .919 save percentage. The Ducks also have John Gibson who is signed for the next three seasons at just $2.3 million a year. What is the old adage? If there are two starting goalies then there isn’t a number one netminder.
What could bring this situation to a head is the fact that Andersen is a RFA this summer. In addition to him, the Ducks have to sign Hampus Lindholm and Sami Vatanen, both of whom are also RFAs. With an expansion draft looming – where teams will only be allowed to protect one goalie – the time is now for the Ducks to move Andersen.
It’s not often that a goalie is a finalist for the Vezina Trophy and traded that off-season. That is a very real possibility regarding the Tampa Bay Lightning starting goalie Ben Bishop. The 29-year-old goalie was phenomenal this past season, when he had a 2.06 goals against average and a .926 save percentage in 61 games.
So why in the world would Tampa trade Bishop? The reason being is no other team is in worst shape with the salary cap than the Lightning. With almost all of their core players up for renewal between this off-season and next, some players have to go. Having the super talented 21-year-old Andrei Vasilevskiy makes it possible to move Bishop this summer.
— NHL on NBC (@NHLonNBCSports) May 29, 2016
Believe it or not Marc-Andre Fluery is now 31-years-old. Seems like yesterday he was the first overall pick in the NHL draft. Fleury had a strong season with a 2.29 goals against average and a .921 save percentage. Unfortunately for Fleury he had concussion issues this season, which have plagued him in the past.
Its clear Matt Murray has taken over the number one job in the nets for Pittsburgh. Fleury does have a limited no trade list but with expansion a year away, the Quebec native could be very accommodating when it comes to a trade.
Jaroslav Halak is a goalie who has been over-looked and under-appreciated in the NHL. In his career, the 31-year old goalie has started 359 games and has a 2.38 goals against average and a .917 save percentage. Last season the Slovak native had 2.30 goals against average and a .919 save percentage in 36 starts. The only negative about Halak’s season last year was that he missed some time due to injury.
The New York Islanders have three goalies between Halak, Thomas Greiss and J.F. Berube. General manager Garth Snow would like to fix that situation this summer. Halak is signed for two more seasons at a reasonable cap hit of $4.5 million.
— Newsday Sports (@NewsdaySports) May 12, 2016
There are a number of teams who are looking for a goalie. Any of these netminders would be a substantial upgrade for their clubs. Let the wheeling and dealing begin in the NHL goalie trade market.