Let the video games start.
Though he is in a battle for the backup job with the Seattle Kraken, Joey Daccord is able to put the pre-season within the rearview mirror.
“While you are available a pair weeks early earlier than camp and camp is a grind as effectively, it undoubtedly feels prefer it’s getting in the direction of the top,” he mentioned. “It does really feel like we have been going for a short while.”
Now 27, Daccord has simply 19 regular-season NHL video games on his resumé thus far. However after two spectacular seasons within the AHL, together with a run to the Calder Cup remaining with the Coachella Valley Firebirds final spring, his time would possibly lastly be nigh.
In 65 minutes of motion throughout two pre-season video games heading into Wednesday evening, Daccord had an ideal 1.000 save share on 22 pictures confronted.
Towards the Vancouver Canucks in Abbotsford, he was crushed as soon as on 16 pictures by way of the primary two durations of the sport — by one-time Kraken defender Carson Soucy.
Nothing like scoring towards your former workforce 👊 pic.twitter.com/9a0HaAkLu0
— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) October 5, 2023
Chris Driedger stepped in for the third, making seven saves and preserving the 2-1 win after Eeli Tolvanen scored what proved to be the game-winner with 7:31 remaining in regulation.
It was simply the second look of pre-season for Driedger, 29, who suffered an ACL damage that required surgical procedure whereas taking part in for Canada on the World Championship within the spring of 2022. By the point he was able to return to motion final February, Martin Jones had seized the backup job in Seattle, so Driedger was positioned on waivers in hopes that he’d work his method again to sport form within the AHL.
The plan labored: in 14 appearances with the Coachella Valley Firebirds, Driedger went 9-4-0 with a .908 save share and a couple of.61 goals-against common.
However with the demand for backup goalies exceeding the availability in these remaining days of pre-season, Daccord in all probability has the within observe on Seattle’s backup job if the Kraken do elect to hold simply two goaltenders. He is signed for a comparatively economical $1.2 million per yr for the subsequent two seasons, whereas Driedger goes into the ultimate season of a three-year contract that carries a hefty $3.5-million cap hit to go together with $4.5 million in actual wage.
The Tampa Bay Lightning and the Colorado Avalanche are each believed to be trying so as to add to their goalie depth as a result of accidents to Andrei Vasilevskiy and Pavel Francouz, respectively. However as latest Stanley Cup champions, it could be all however not possible for both workforce so as to add $3.5 million in a goalie cap hit.
Even with speak that Francouz may not be again in motion anytime quickly, he’d unencumber simply $2 million if he was added to long-term injured reserve. And that completely illustrates why the Kraken could have the most effective likelihood of preserving their goaltending depth for the upcoming season in the event that they intention to slip Driedger and his greater deal by way of to Coachella Valley whereas defending Daccord’s extra modest cap hit within the backup slot in Seattle.
The Toronto Maple Leafs are dealing with an analogous dilemma — with two much more inexpensive stoppers vying for the backup job behind Ilya Samsonov.
After being a linchpin of the Kraken’s very good 2022-23 season along with his 27-13-3 file and a couple of.99 GAA, Martin Jones is at it once more. Signed for simply $875,000, the 33-year-old has been Toronto’s finest stopper in pre-season, with a .939 save share and simply 4 objectives allowed over three video games and 152:54 of motion.
Alex Newhook se fait voler par Martin Jones 😩 pic.twitter.com/6tSWV105bz
— TVA Sports activities (@TVASports) September 30, 2023
He is a safety blanket the Leafs would very very similar to to hold onto, particularly when Samsonov has given up 5 objectives in simply over 100 minutes for a extra modest .884 save share.
And whereas the membership has excessive hopes for Joseph Woll, the 25-year-old has performed simply half a sport up to now, giving up three objectives. He has missed a while throughout pre-season as a result of sickness.
Woll might not be able to assume the Leafs’ backup position when the common season begins subsequent week. However along with his uber-reasonable cap hit of $776,667 over the subsequent two seasons, the third-round choose from 2016 would possible be a waiver goal if Toronto tries to slip him by way of to the Marlies.
And do the Los Angeles Kings have an analogous concern? After saying goodbye to franchise legend Jonathan Fast and letting Joonas Korpisalo stroll in free company, GM Rob Blake’s crew goes into the season with an skilled however cheap tandem of Pheonix Copley ($1.5 million) and Cam Talbot ($1 million).
In the meantime, it is newly acquired third-stringer David Rittich who has been shining in pre-season for the Kings. He has allowed simply two objectives in 102:51 of motion over three video games for a save share of .960.
During the last three seasons, ‘Massive Save Dave’ has bounced round from Calgary to Toronto to Nashville to Winnipeg and now to L.A. He is additionally signed to a really affordable deal at a cap hit of simply $875,000. That units him up for one more workforce to doubtlessly snag him if the Kings danger placing him on waivers between now and subsequent Monday when season-opening rosters should be set.
By Wednesday, one goalie has been snapped up on waivers up to now. Whereas coping with an damage to Daniil Tarasov, the Columbus Blue Jackets claimed Spencer Martin from the Vancouver Canucks on Sept. 29.
— Dave Maetzold (@DMaetzMedia) October 4, 2023
After incomes a two-year, one-way contract with the Canucks to begin the 2022-23 season, Martin’s tenure as Thatcher Demko’s backup didn’t dwell as much as expectations — particularly when his workload obtained heavier following Demko’s groin damage final December. He hit the waiver wire in February however completed out the season robust in AHL Abbotsford, with a .916 save share and a couple of.43 GAA forward of incomes the starter’s nod within the playoffs.
As we attain the ultimate days of the pre-season, preserve an eye fixed out for extra potential motion amongst goalies, significantly on the waiver wire.
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