One point of issue many of us agree on is the Oilers need to find a competent back up goalie for Cam Talbot.
Talbot has been great his year but he’s also played more games than any other goalie in the NHL. His current back up, Jonas Gustavsson, has been sub par. A 1-3-1 record with a 0.893sv% aren’t the numbers required to be considered an adequate back up tender in the NHL.
The Oilers do have a great prospect playing for the Condors in Laurent Brossoit. However, the common thought is the team would like him to remain in the AHL playing the majority of the minutes between the pipes.
NYI put Jaro Halak on waivers.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) December 30, 2016
Then comes today’s news from NHL Insider Bob McKenzie that the New York Islanders have placed goaltender Jaroslav Halak on waivers. Halak would be a perfect back up for the Oilers, or many other NHL teams for that matter.
- His career SV% is .916.
- He’s been a starter and a back up before.
- He had an amazing playoff run with the Montreal Canadiens in 2010.
- He wants out of his current situation in New York.
- His cap hit is 4.5 million, with 2.5 million of that left for this year.
- Halak is not a rental player. He has one more year left on his deal at the above mentioned cap hit.
- The Oilers only have 4.5 million in cap space.
- There is no guarantee that the Oilers will be able to rid themselves of Halak’s contract should things not work out or the cap hit becomes an issue, which it surely will.
I don’t think there is a realistic chance the Oilers file the waiver claim for Halak. The cap hit and extra year of term is probably enough to scare most teams away.
There are two scenarios I can see playing out here if the Oilers covet Halak:
1 – They try and trade bad contract for bad contract. A player like Mark Fayne, who can’t find his place here with the Oilers and makes about 1 million less per season than Halak, would be a nice trade option. Their contracts also both expire at the end of the 2017-18 season.
2 – Chiarelli offers up a package of picks and/or prospects to the Islanders with the caveat that they must eat a portion of Halak’s contract for next season.
The Oilers need a back up goalie in a big bad way. Halak is available and we’re not likely to see a better option in the near future to help this team right now. As mentioned current starter Cam Talbot has played the most of any starting goaltender in the league, and if this team is eyeing the playoffs they’re not going to want to burn out their goalie before they get there.
Thanks for reading, and be sure to comment below letting me know what you think the Oiler brass should do about the back up goaltending situation.