Who's stopping the puck?
The Los Angeles Kings have 4 goaltenders capable of playing NHL games, but none capable of doing it well…
Dan Cloutier is a guy I liked in Vancouver. However a concussion later this guy will likely never play in the NHL again.
JS Aubin is still living the high of the 05-06 season to its fullest, but his hype is dying. He’s played in 2 games, and hasn’t played very well.
I truly believe Jonathan Bernier is one of the best young goaltenders in the world. But he’s not Patrick Roy. At 19 he’s not ready.
Jason Labarbera was the guy I thought would take the starting job in LA. But he’s making me look like an idiot, as he has the worst save percentage on the team so far.
So, when I asked myself why the team leading the Pacific division in goals for was 2-6. The answer was pretty obvious. I watched them play a pair of games in Europe, in which they played fairly well. They do not strike me as a team with poor defensive play, therefore one must consider that they might try to aquire a goalie and resurect their season.
They are in a very good position in my opinion, as they are the only team in serious need of a goalie, and lots of teams are looking to deal away netminders. Here are some possible options:
Anaheim- Ilya Bryzgalov– unlikely
I dont see the Ducks trading him to a division rival, but it’s not out of the question.
Dallas- Mike Smith– unlikely
Smith has gotten off to a poor start, and Dallas won’t deal him to a division rival.
Colorado- Jose Theodore– unlikely
According to a few friends of mine out west, Theo has played quite well to start off the year. Colorado would jump at any oppritunity to dump him. However, one would hope LA learned their lesson after handing Cloutier 9 million dollars.
Montreal- Jaroslav Halak– unlikely
Halak is more of a long term acquisition, the Kings need a guy to help them now.
Montreal- Cristobal Huet– possible
Huet is off to a good start, but Halak is in the minors and Price is NHL ready. The biggest downfall is Huet will likely be dealt later rather than sooner. By the time Huet becomes available, the Kings could be way out of playoff contension.
Toronto- Andrew Raycroft– Possible
Raycroft is not an ideal starter, but he’s better than what the kings have got. The Leafs would need to acquire a good backup, as LA could not provide one in return.
Ottawa- Martin Gerber– Likely
He’s playing well, but Emery is the starter, and ultimately the better guy in the playoffs. Plus Brian Elliot is making it tough for the sens to send him down. Gerber could be LA starter for years to come. This is the most likely option, and LA’s best option in my opinion.