So, Yzerman needs an excellent starter (someone who can be a Top 20 goalie) if he wants to salvage the 2012-13 season, and a good back-up as well. A week before this year’s draft, Yzerman acquired 24 year-old netminder Anders Lindback from the Predators, along with forward Kyle Wilson and a 7th round pick in the draft, in exchange for two 2nd round picks in the 2012 draft, a 3rd round pick in the 2013 draft and goalie Sebastien Caron. Yzerman had put himself into a position where he really had to do this deal because he has nobody of merit between the pipes and Lindback could develop into a starting goalie. Currently, he is a back-up caliber goalie, but if Yzerman does not obtain a goalie by trade this summer or fall, I believe that Lindback will earn the starting spot over Mathieu Garon. Lindback played 22 games for the Preds in the 2010-11 season and his Save Percentage was acceptable at .915 and he had two shutouts. Last year he played just 16 games (with a
Who to trade for? Luongo?
Well Roberto Luongo is clearly available but Yzerman said that he is not interested in him. That surprises me a little because Luongo is a solid goaltender (but not elite) and would be enough to get the Lightning into the playoffs at least some years in the next six or seven years that Luongo will play before retiring. Luongo was a 10 million dollar man in the 2010-11 season but that dropped to 6.716 million a season and until 2017-18, and then to 3.382 million for the following year, 1.1618 in 2019-20, and then the final two years of the contract pay just 1 million a year—get that cap hit down boys. Luongo is likely to retire after the 2017-18 season which will mean six more years in-between the pipes until he is 39 years old, but, he could bow himself really low and play for the 3.38 million in 2018-10—wink, wink, snicker, snicker. Yzerman could take on Luongo’s contract if he really wanted to. To be honest, I don’t care for Luongo due to his over-rated status (as proven by stats and other parts of his game), his pride, previous poker TV commercials for BC Lottery (not a good example for the kids who look up to him), and his recent radio interview in Vancouver where he kissed the Canucks goodbye despite the fact that he has not been traded! Luongo should have just kept his mouth shut and let GM Mike Gillis do his job, rather than offending him by trying to force a trade. What it comes down to is that Yzerman has dug himself in a huge, extremely deep hole and Luongo would be a sure way of giving the team a decent chance of making the playoffs and advancing. So, I think that Yzerman should consider Luongo more carefully and go ahead and take him unless he can secure another goalie. Just don’t play Luongo in the TD Garden in
Besides Luongo, Yzerman might want to consider a trade with the Kings for Jonathan Bernier. He had a tough year last year but given more ice time he would improve to where he was before and probably become even better. And, he is only 23 years old, a steal at 1.525 million for 2012-13, and would be a RFA at the end of the upcoming season.
The goalie that I would go for would be Robin Lehner who the Senators have grossly mistreated despite the fact that he had the best Save Percentage of their four goaltenders last year. They only allowed Lehner to play five games in 2011-12, four after Anderson lacerated his finger; and, in those five games he had a Save Percentage of .935, one shutout, and a GAA of 2.01. Furthermore, in the four games he played after
was injured, he was the 1st Star twice and the 2nd Star
once. The 20 year-old, 220 lb Swede is going to be another Lundqvist in my
opinion (almost already is and has not been given much of a chance), and maybe
even better. GM Bryan Murray’s buddy, Ben Bishop, who he clearly favored, played
in ten games and had a Save Percentage of .909, zero shutouts, and a GAA of
2.48. Alex Auld played in 14 games and had a brutal Save Percentage of .884,
zero shutouts, and a GAA of 3.35. Craig Anderson played in 63 games and had a
Save Percentage of .914, only three shutouts, and a GAA of 2.84. Anderson
Finally, Mike Smith is out now Mr. Yzerman. You better make a move for an excellent goalie rather than resting all of your hopes and playoff chances on Lindback. Two goalies are better than one. Furthermore, I would trade a couple of your Russian prospects as part of a goalie trade.