NHL Trade Deadline: 8 goaltenders who could be on the move

The 2021 NHL trade deadline is Monday, April. 12 at 3 p.m. ET. As we wait to see who will be dealt, we’ll be looking at the top names who could be on the move next week. Today, we finish up with goaltenders.

Chris Driedger, Panthers (26 years old / UFA this summer / $850K cap hit): The mix of Spencer Knight signing, Sergei Bobrovsky’s contract still having five years remaining, and Driedger able to be a UFA this summer puts him on the trade bait list. He’s emerged as a viable starter for the Panthers, posting a .945 5-on-5 save percentage and a 5.76 goals saved above average in 17 appearances, per Natural Stat Trick.

Driedger’s status as a rental and his cheap cap hit makes him an attractive option for playoffs teams looking to add to their goaltending depth. But should the Panthers be eager to flip him for futures or ride this out with him and Bob and be fine with letting him walk in free agency?

Antti Raanta, Coyotes (31 years old / UFA this summer / $4.25M cap hit): There is a catch when it comes to acquiring Raanta at this year’s NHL trade deadline. He’s been a solid goaltender, as shown by his .922 even strength save percentage in 103 appearances over the last five years. But injuries have hindered him from keeping hold of the No. 1 job in Arizona. If he can stay healthy when he returns, all is good. But when did you know of NHL GMs taking risks as opposed to being ultra-conservative?

[ProHockeyTalk’s 2020-21 NHL Trade Tracker]

Jonathan Bernier, Red Wings (32 years old / UFA this summer / $3M cap hit): Currently injured, Bernier has performed well behind a poor Red Wings team. He has a .935 5-on-5 save percentage in 17 games played and his 5.81 goals saved above average is just outside the top 20 among goaltenders with at least 700 minutes played.

Bernier could be good insurance for a playoff team, and the Red Wings will be looking to add to their slew of picks this offseason (six in the opening three rounds).

James Reimer, Hurricanes (33 years old / UFA this summer / $3.4M cap hit): Petr Mrazek is back, which means Carolina has three serviceable goaltenders available. One has to go, and the way Alex Nedeljkovic has emerged (plus his age, 25, and RFA status) he’ll be staying in Raleigh. Mrazek, 29, is a UFA this summer like Reimer, and comes with a slightly cheaper cap hit ($3.125M). GM Don Waddell said he may use one as a trade chip, which would be beneficial to strengthen the rest of the roster as the playoffs approach.

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Elvis Merzlikins, Blue Jackets (26 years old / signed through 2021-22 / $4M cap hit)
Joonas Korpisalo, Blue Jackets (26 years old / signed through 2021-22 / $2.8M cap hit)

The playoffs are a small possibility, but if you’re Jarmo Kekalainen, this might be the year to sell rather than go all-in as he’s done in the past. Among his many options, what to do in goal is a question he faces right now. Teams are always looking for goalie depth, and he has two options for teams to consider with Daniil Tarasov waiting in the wings.

Korpisalo has handled most of the workload with 26 starts to Merzlikins’ 17, but Elvis has outperformed him. In 17 appearances Merzlikins has a .919 5-on-5 save percentage to Korpisalo’s .914. Both have a year left, but Merzlikins is the richer option between his cap hit and the $5M in salary he’s owed next season versus $3.4M for Korpisalo.

[Your 2020-21 NHL on NBC TV schedule]

Devan Dubnyk, Sharks (34 years old / UFA this summer / $2.167M cap hit): Another one on an expiring contract, Dubnyk has had a rough go of it in San Jose. In 17 games he’s recorded a .900 5-on-5 save percentage and a -4.21 goals saved above average. The Sharks would love to unload him, but there are plenty of better options available for GMs at the NHL trade deadline.

Ryan Miller, Ducks (40 years old / UFA this summer / $1M cap hit): The veteran has settled into his role as John Gibson’s backup and played well during his time in Anaheim. Over the last three seasons he’s put out a .915 5-on-5 save percentage in nearly 2,500 minutes of ice time.

His NHL days are coming to a close, so would he welcome a chance to chase a Stanley Cup? Miller has not played beyond the First Round since he was with the Sabres in 2007.

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Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

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    Bruins set NHL record with 12 straight home wins to start season

    Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
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    BOSTON — The Boston Bruins set the NHL record for most home victories to start a season with their 12th straight, topping the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime with a power-play goal from David Pastrnak.

    The Bruins broke the mark of 11 that was set by the 1963-64 Chicago Blackhawks and equaled by the Florida Panthers last season.

    “That felt awesome,” Bruins first-year coach Jim Montgomery said. “We talked about it after the second (period) going into the third. There’s been a lot of great teams in this league and you’re able to set a precedent, break a record. It’s pretty special and it doesn’t happen if those guys don’t believe in themselves like they do.”

    Boston, which trailed 2-0 late in the second period, tied it with 9:33 left in regulation when David Krejci scored his second of the game on a shot from the right point.

    “It’s never fun being down going into the third, you’re sitting in here (in the locker room) trying to figure it out,” Krejci said. “You want to come out and do the job, something special on the line. It’s hard to win in this league. To get 12 in a row at home is pretty special.”

    In overtime, Carolina was playing shorthanded after being called for too many men on the ice when Pastrnak one-timed a pass from Brad Marchand inside the far post from above the left circle.

    “It was a big win for us, obviously, coming from behind,” Pastrnak said.

    Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Stefan Noesen each scored a power-play goal for Carolina, and Pyotr Kochetkov made 38 saves. The Hurricanes lost their fifth straight.

    In a rematch of last spring’s opening-round playoff series that the Hurricanes won in seven games, Carolina shutout the NHL’s highest scoring team for nearly two periods and jumped ahead a pair of power-play goals in the opening period.

    “We took too many penalties. That’s hurting us right now,” Kotaniemi said. “I think 5-on-5 we’re doing a really good job. We started good tonight and couldn’t keep that up.”

    Boston’s tying goal was originally disallowed because of goaltender interference on Nick Foligno but overturned on a coach’s challenge after it was ruled that he was nudged into the crease by Carolina defenseman Brett Pesce.

    Boston starting goaltender Linus Ullmark made 28 saves but had to leave with 13:03 left in the third period with an undisclosed upper-body injury. Teammate Connor Clifton had jumped on him to block a shot during a scramble. Jeremy Swayman made six stops in relief.

    Carolina’s Noesen scored at 6:34 in to make it 1-0. And with five minutes left in the period, Kotkaniemi collected the puck near the side of the net after Seth Jarvis‘ shot bounced off the back glass and slipped it inside the post at 15:05.

    Krejci scored for Boston with 31 seconds left in the second.

    Boston came in with a league-high 82 goals in 20 games (4.10 per game), but it was held to relatively few chances despite getting a 5-on-3 power-play advantage early on.

    TAKE NOTE

    The Bruins honored captain Patrice Bergeron, who recorded his 1,000th career point when the team was on the road against Tampa Bay, with a message on the Jumbotron. The crowd gave him a standing ovation.

    Bergeron became just the fourth Bruin to reach the mark, joining Hall of Famers Ray Bourque (1,506), Johnny Bucyk (1,339) and Phil Esposito (1,012).

    UP NEXT

    Hurricanes: Host the Calgary Flames.

    Bruins: Host the Tampa Bay Lightning.

    Predators postpone 2 games due to Nashville water main break

    Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
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    NASHVILLE, Tenn. —  The Nashville Predators postponed two home games because of a water main break that soaked their downtown arena.

    Hours after the Predators decided they couldn’t play against the Colorado Avalanche, the team announced it also postponed the game against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Makeup dates for the two games will be announced later.

    The NHL said the water main break that occurred “significantly impacted the event level” of Bridgestone Arena. Team locker rooms and the ice surface are on the event level.

    Predators President and CEO Sean Henry told reporters that the water in the event level ranged from 3 inches to 3 feet.

    “We’re assessing it right now. We’re remediating it,” Henry said. “The good thing is, the water got shut off, the city responded in a pretty fast manner. I don’t think anyone is ready for things like this the Friday after Thanksgiving.”

    Video posted by a WTVF-TV reporter shows the water puddled up on the main floor’s concourse area and the team store. The team was forced to close the store until further notice, pointing shoppers online for Black Friday specials.

    The Predators’ next home game is now scheduled for Tuesday against the Anaheim Ducks.

    The water issue also resulted in a switch to a different venue for a college hockey game between Northeastern and Western Michigan. They also had been scheduled to play at Bridgestone Arena, a game that was moved to Ford Ice Center Bellevue.

    Rangers trade Ryan Reaves to Wild for 5th-round pick in 2025

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    ST. PAUL, Minn. — The New York Rangers traded enforcer Ryan Reaves to the Minnesota Wild for a 2025 fifth-round pick.

    Reaves had been a healthy scratch for eight of the past 12 games for the Rangers. He gives struggling Minnesota some extra muscle and a veteran presence.

    The 35-year-old is signed through only the rest of this season at a $1.75 million salary cap hit. He has no points and 12 penalty minutes in 12 games of his second season with New York.

    Reaves has played in 869 NHL regular-season and playoff games for the St. Louis Blues, Pittsburgh Penguins, Vegas Golden Knights and Rangers. He was with the Golden Knights during their inaugural season in 2017-18 when the reached the Stanley Cup Final.

    Toronto’s Morgan Rielly placed on long-term injured reserve

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    TORONTO — The Toronto Maple Leafs placed defenseman Morgan Rielly on long-term injured reserve with a knee injury.

    Rielly was hurt in a collision with with New York forward Kyle Palmieri early in the third period of Toronto’s 3-2 overtime loss to the Islanders at home.

    Rielly has no goals and 16 assists in 20 games this season and is averaging 23 minutes of ice time.

    Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said following practice that the 28-year-old Rielly doesn’t need surgery, adding there’s no firm timeline for his return beyond the minimum 24 days and 10 games required for going on long-term injured reserve.

    Toronto’s defense is also missing Jake Muzzin with a neck injury and T.J. Brodie with an injured oblique.