The NHL goalie market may be drying up even before the gates open on this year’s offseason. According to Tom Timmermann of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the St. Louis Blues ay be interested in keeping things the way they are by holding onto their goalie tandem – Jake Allen and Brian Elliott.
“I thought when I look at it at the end of the season, we were very fortunate to have two goaltenders that were there to grab the ball when it hit the floor,” said Blues’ general manager Doug Armstrong to Timmermann. “We had those significant injuries to both guys, and both guys took the challenge and then ran with it and then didn’t let the other guy back in the net until an injury.”
Elliott took the reins in the playoffs playing 18 games for the Blues posting a 2.44 goals against average and a .921 save percentage getting his team within one series of the Stanley Cup Finals.
During the regular season he played in 41 games with an impressive 2.07 goals against average and .930 save percentage. He finished with a 23-8-2 record and four shutouts. Compare that to Allen’s 47 games played, his six shutouts and his 2.35 average and .920 save percentage and the Blues seem to have a tough decision on their hands.
Allen didn’t have nearly the same success in the playoffs in his four games played, but as Armstrong said, Allen is still growing as an NHL goalie.
Either way, if the Blues keep both or not, the team will have a tough decision at the end of the season. Both Elliott and Allen have just one year left on their current contracts. Elliott is due $2.5-million in 2016-17 before he becomes an unrestricted free agent, while Allen will make $2.35-million next season before he becomes a restricted free agent.
Both goalies have proven their worth to the franchise and it will be a tough to decide which way to go next offseason. For now, it seems that the Blues have a good game plan in net going into next season.
Andrew is in his 8th year reporting for The Hockey Writers covering the Toronto Maple Leafs. He began his broadcasting with CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada team as well as being part of their coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi. He’s the former play-by-play voice of the London Jr. Knights for Rogers TV and currently hosts the Sticks in the 6ix podcast. You can follow him on Twitter at @AndrewGForbes.