Jonathan Bernier went from a sitting duck in Toronto to a member of the Anaheim Ducks on Friday.
The Ducks sent a conditional draft pick to the Maple Leafs to bring in Bernier.
It’s unclear at the moment what kind of conditional draft pick we’re talking about, although it sounds like the selection will come from Anaheim’s pool of 2017 NHL Draft picks.
It sounds like this deal is essentially housekeeping from the swap that sent Frederik Andersen to the Maple Leafs earlier this summer. For a cost-conscious team like the Ducks, waiting until a signing bonus rolled around made a lot of sense:
The Ducks should have plenty of intel on Bernier. The Los Angeles Kings drafted him 11th overall in 2006, yet Jonathan Quick‘s ascension pushed Bernier out.
Randy Carlyle also got plenty of looks at Bernier in Toronto (where the goalie occasionally managed to bail the Buds out, at least on his better nights).
Bernier clearly wasn’t in the Maple Leafs’ longer-term plans, so it makes sense for them to cut their losses with the goalie rather than keep him around for the 2016-17 season.
While this is a low point in Bernier’s career, this is a great opportunity for him to prove himself. As we’ve seen in other situations,* goalies can turn perception around in little time. The Ducks aren’t shy about going with the hot hand in net, either, so you never know when Bernier could enjoy a big rebound.