After the clock struck midnight on Anton Khudobin’s Cinderella story during the Stanley Cup Final and the steeds turned back into mice, it might have been disappointing for the Dallas Stars but it was a great story for Khudobin. In the end, the 34-year-old career backup goalie had strung together one of the hottest Stanley Cup goalie-runs of recent playoff history.
What Had Khudobin Accomplished?
Khudobin’s surprising play took the Stars right to the door – within a couple of games of winning the Stanley Cup – but Khudobin just couldn’t stop a great Lightning team, and that’s no knock on him. It was much further than even the most ardent Stars fans thought their team could go.
Now, most Dallas NHL fans want Khudobin back. Although the teams were working on a deal, as of this point in time nothing has materialized. According to Pierre LeBrun on Insider Trading, Khudobin’s agent Kent Hughes laid a number on the table but the Stars didn’t bite.
Now it seems – unless something can get done by Friday afternoon – that the suddenly popular goalie will become a UFA and enter the off-season market as an unrestricted free agent.
Was Khudobin’s Nhet Wise?
Who knows if Khudobin’s saying Nhet (no in Russian) was a wise choice or not; there are a ton of solid goalies on the market? Still, it would seem Khudobin has some leverage based upon his strong playoffs. That alone should help him negotiate a good deal. The question is “Will it be with Dallas or another club?”
He ended the postseason with a record of 14-10, a goals-against-average of 2.69, and a .917 save percentage. But it wasn’t just the playoffs; Khudobin was great during the past two seasons in addition to his excellent playoff run while he filled in for an injured Bishop.
It seems as if the Stars organization wants to keep the goalie tandem of Khudobin and Ben Bishop together for what’s likely to be a shortened 2020-21 schedule. The Stars issue in making that happen is that the team also has a number of other players to sign and, up against a flat salary cap, that’s tough to do.
The Stars Plans for Next Season
The latest word we have is that the Stars general manager Nill has reported that Khudobin would test the open market as an unrestricted free agent.
Nill has to hope Khudobin will return; however, at the same time the team has to be confident that Bishop and a new backup goalie Jake Oettinger can do the job if nothing transpires during free agency. As noted earlier, there’s a long list of good goalies that are on the move this offseason.
One has to believe Khudobin will land well – somewhere.
Today, the Stars general manager announced that Khudobin had undergone surgery yesterday to treat some numbness in his hand; however, that surgery seems to be minor and the 34-year-old goalie is expected to recover quickly.
/ 2 hours ago
The Buffalo Sabres and goaltender Linus Ullmark have submitted their arbitration numbers and they...
/ 14 hours ago
Detroit Red Wings GM Steve Yzerman led the charge at Friday's GM meetings to...
/ 19 hours ago
The Calgary Flames have added another defenseman, signing Nikita Nesterov from the KHL on...
/ 21 hours ago
The Toronto Maple Leafs took care of one of their final pieces of necessary...
/ 23 hours ago
If a report is accurate, Anthony Duclair turned down a lucrative offer from the...
/ 1 day ago
Can Torey Krug effectively fill the shoes of Alex Pietrangelo? There's a lot of...
/ 2 days ago
Pierre LeBrun is reporting that the Dallas Stars and head coach Rick Bowness are...
/ 2 days ago
On Thursday, the NHL announced the postponements of the 2021 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic...
/ 2 days ago
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill has signed right wing Denis Gurianov to a...
/ 2 days ago
As per a few sources and as confirmed by the organization on Thursday, the...