Pierre LeBrun noted on TSN Insider Trading that the goalie carousel continues to turn in the NHL as teams get set for the free agent market to open on Friday. There’s a ton of talk about a number of goalie options and the Edmonton Oilers have been front-and-center on much of those talks.
The latest is that Oilers general manager Ken Holland is eyeing former Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby as a possible 1B or 1A to Mikko Koskinen. There’s no detail as to how much the Oilers would be willing to offer or, for that matter, how much Holtby is seeking, but Edmonton isn’t exactly rolling in extra cap space.
Holtby leaves the Washington Capitals as the team focuses on Ilya Samsonov and the Oilers like the idea of veterans working in tandem with less experienced goalies. While Koskinen got some experience during a pretty good regular season run for Edmonton, he’s still relatively inexperienced and the Oilers don’t know if he’s a starter yet.
Last season, the Oilers brought 38-year-old Mike Smith into the fold. If they go with Holtby, the Oilers would actually be going with someone seven years younger and a player that, if he performs well, could be signed for a longer term — even if the deal is never all that long.
What Kind of Options Does Holtby Have?
The goalie market is flooded so it’s not known yet how much action Holtby will see. That said, he was interested in more playing time so the idea of splitting the season with Koskinen might be appealing. And, the Oilers would potentially be willing to offer more than one season, something other teams might not do.
Will Holland and the Oilers make HOltby their top target coming out of the gate on Friday? Or, is the netminder just one of the many goalies the team has potentially kicked tires on.
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