The Minnesota Wild have averaged just 2.13 goals per game this season and entered tonight’s contest without Zach Parise. Despite that, Winnipeg Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec allowed three goals on seven shots in just 7:04 minutes.
After that display, the Jets yanked him in favor of Al Montoya.
And yet Winnipeg is far from out of this contest — in fact, they were on top going into the first intermission.
Minnesota netminder Niklas Backstrom turned aside just seven of 11 shots through 20 minutes. He has now allowed at least three goals in each of his last six starts.
If the Wild wish to take him out of the game, then 21-year-old netminder Johan Gustafsson will make his NHL debut. Josh Harding didn’t dress tonight, although he has been activated off of the injured reserve list.
In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.
The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.
At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.
As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.
The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.
All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.
The Los Angeles Kings announced today that they have “reached an agreement with Mike Richards to resolve the grievance filed in relation to the termination of his NHL Standard Players Contract. The terms are agreeable to all parties.”
The club said that it will not be commenting further “on the terms” of the settlement.
The NHLPA released a similar statement.
It was reported earlier in the week that a settlement was close to being reached; however, it wasn’t clear what salary-cap penalties the Kings would incur.
We’re starting to find out some details now:
How the final numbers differ from what the Kings would have incurred if they’d bought Richards out will be interesting to see. And if there are differences, how will they be justified?