Check PHT each weekday for the first four weeks of June for a new pending unrestricted free agent of the day. Today’s UFA of the Day is…
With Boston’s signing of Niklas Svedberg, Johnson’s time as Bruin is effectively over. The 28-year-old is coming off a solid season (17-4-3, .925) as Tuukka Rask’s backup, but will now have to join a crowded group of UFA goalies, all looking for a limited number of spots.
“I am excited for the next opportunity to prove more and more,” said Johnson in an email to CSN New England. “I love to win, and be a part of a winning environment. I obviously would love to be able to help a team win a lot of hockey games. I am looking for a chance to really have an important role with a team.”
Ideally, Johnson would like to be in a situation where he could at least challenge for the starting job. The Washington Capitals are looking for a backup to Braden Holtby, who still has a few things to prove. The Jets don’t yet have a backup for Ondrej Pavelec, the subject of intense scrutiny in Winnipeg. Calgary is perhaps another option. Maybe Dallas, too.
The challenge for Johnson, or should we say for his agent, will be convincing a team that he’s a better option than Ryan Miller, Jonas Hiller, Thomas Greiss, Justin Peters, Tim Thomas, Ray Emery, and the list goes on. Because despite Johnson’s solid 2013-14, he’s only had one real season in the NHL. And besides a few appearances versus the Kings, his game log isn’t exactly loaded with top-quality opponents. Plus, he had the luxury of playing behind the Bruins’ defense.