The NHL Trade Deadline is fast approaching, and the Detroit Red Wings are once again poised to be sellers in order to obtain future draft assets.
One particular piece of the team that’s been mentioned as a possibility to be moved is goaltender Jonathan Bernier, who is in the final year of a three-year contract signed in 2018 and poised to become an unrestricted free-agent.
Bernier has already been linked to the Philadelphia Flyers, who have received underwhelming goaltending from the young Carter Hart this season.
In a recent piece on MLive, beat writer Ansar Khan listed an additional four teams that could be in the market for goaltending help – St. Louis, Toronto, Edmonton, and Colorado.
Of course, there’s the Ken Holland connection with Edmonton. Holland originally signed Bernier while with Detroit in 2018, and his current tandem of Mike Smith and Mikko Koskinen (along with Alex Stalock) may not be enough to help them on a lengthy playoff run. Smith is 38 years of age and has battled injuries in recent years, while Koskinen may not be ready for playoff action.
With St. Louis, it’s no surprise to see 2019 Stanley Cup winner Jordan Binnington manning the crease. But with the unproven and young Ville Husso backing him up, the Blues would be wise to seek veteran help that could potentially step in should Binnington suffer injury troubles.
Goaltender Fredrik Anderson has been in the crosshairs of criticism in the ever-present Toronto media, and has also dealt with injury trouble. Backup Jack Campbell has proven a capable backup, but has also struggled staying healthy. Bernier played several years in Toronto, and could be an attractive option for Brendan Shanahan and company to bring back aboard.
As far Colorado, Bernier is a familiar name there as well, having played for the Avalanche during the 2017-18 season. With the oft-injured Philipp Grubauer manning the crease and backup Pavel Francouz sidelined by a lower-body injury, the Avalanche are among the teams that will be looking for some insurance.