Steve Yzerman had a bit of a dilemma on his hands. He had a solid Number 1 NHL guy in Ben Bishop and two up and coming young guys in Kristers Gudlevskis and Andrei Vasilevski, but no number 2 goalie to sit backup to Bishop. How do you keep the two developing goalies playing in the near term without blocking their access to the NHL in the future?
Well, you do that by signing Evgeni Nabokov, apparently.
Nabokov is a 39-year-old who last has a .905 with the New York Islanders. But by this point in the evening all the young solid backup goalies were taken (Thomas Greiss, Chad Johnson, Justin Peters, and Al Montoya)
No word yet on the contract, but this is almost certainly a stopgap measure intended to allow Gudlevskis and Vasilevskiy to remain in Syracuse, getting the playing time they need. Should Bishop go down with an injury, either of the kids can come up and get intermittent NHL time.
Cap hit on Nabokov's one-year deal with Tampa Bay is $1.55 million.— Ken Campbell (@THNKenCampbell) July 1, 2014