The Ottawa Senators have extended backup goaltender Anton Forsberg through 2021-22 and raised his salary to $900 thousand. This move comes as Ottawa nears the end of its regular season and begins deliberating how to manage the roster for next year. The team announced the extension Wednesday afternoon.
— Sens Communications (@Media_Sens) May 5, 2021
Senators Extend Anton Forsberg
Forsberg has only appeared in six NHL games this year, but he has been one of the few effective goalies for Ottawa in 2020-21. The 28-year-old backstop currently has a .910 save percentage and 3.18 goals-against-average. Both figures are second on the team behind Filip Gustavsson. Forsberg hasn’t played enough to generate many advanced stats, but it is encouraging to see that four of his six starts qualify for quality status. This means that four starts featured a save percentage greater than the average save percentage for the year, or a save percentage greater than .885 if the shots-faced was 20 or fewer.
The Columbus Blue Jackets originally drafted Forsberg in the seventh round of the 2011 Draft, but the Swede has appeared for four teams in his six NHL seasons. His best year came with the Chicago Blackhawks in 2017-18. That is the season in which Forsberg posted a .908 save percentage and 2.97 goals-against over 35 games. He may never be a regular starter, but he is a reasonable backup for the moment.
What This Means For The Future
Forsberg likely enters next year as the primary backup in Ottawa. Matt Murray will be the start for many years, but his backup is undecided. Fans may wonder why Gustafsson isn’t the obvious choice. The 22-year-old certainly is, but Forsberg holds more experience. Both merely feel like placeholders while 2019 draftee Mads Sogaard acclimates to North American hockey. Even if Forsberg is not part of the future core, he may play a key role next year if Murray ever gets hurt.
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