The Detroit Red Wings signed goaltender Thomas Greiss today. The new deal is for two years and $7.2 million in total. His deal will run through the 2021-22 season and have an average value of $3.6 million per season. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman first reported the deal on Saturday.
Hearing Thomas Greiss to DET 2x$3.6M
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) October 10, 2020
Thomas Greiss Signs with Detroit
Greiss is coming off a surprise run in the Stanley Cup Playoffs with the New York Islanders. He only appeared in four games but compiled a 2-2 record with a .929 save percentage and 2.02 goals against. His career includes a Jennings trophy win in 2018–19, platooning Long Island’s net with Robin Lehner. Otherwise, he has 282 regular-season games played over 11 years with a very respectable .915 save percentage and 2.63 goals against.
Greiss entered the league with the San Jose Sharks, and also played with the Phoenix Coyotes and Pittsburgh Penguins before joining the Islanders in 2015-16. He also has considerable international experience, being the youngest goaltender at the 2006 Olympic Games.
What This Means For The Future
Greiss has only been his team’s primary goalie once, for the Islanders in 2016–17. He played credibly, but for the most part, Greiss is regarded primarily as a backup or 1B in a platoon. At 34 years old, that’s unlikely to change as he finds himself once again needing to prove his worth. He lost his position with the Islanders to the slightly cheaper and much younger Ilya Sorokin. While his age no doubt worked against him in negotiations, his signing is hardly a shock. His new team wants what the Islanders got: a solid veteran who can take over the net if needed.
He comes off a three-year, $10 million deal after a series of one- and two-year deals. In an off-season filled with financial uncertainty and a huge number of goaltenders available, Greiss getting any deal is a win. His experience of splitting goaltending duties throughout his career should prove to be an advantage in a condensed season. Whether Greiss can turn that experience into another contract past this one might come down to keeping his ask modest, no matter his or the Red Wings’ success.