Jarome Iginla was dealt to the Pittsburgh Penguins, and Jay Bouwmeester went to the St. Louis Blues. Now the question is whether the Calgary Flames will trade Miikka Kiprusoff to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
According to TSN.ca, the Maple Leafs have been given permission by the Flames to speak to Kiprusoff’s agent.
The mood appears to have changed from a week ago, when reports indicated that Kiprusoff (who doesn’t have a no-movement/no-trade clause) would refuse to report to another team if traded.
With the trade deadline less than 48 hours away, the Leafs will look to find out Kiprusoff’s intentions moving forward and discuss a possible contract extension (per TSN).
Kiprusoff’s current contract expires after next season. However, because the six-year, $35 million deal is front loaded, he will only make $1.5 million in 2013-14 but carry a cap hit of $5.83 million.
And as the CBC’s Elliotte Friedman points out, Kiprusoff cannot sign an extension until after this season:
Just one thing about Kiprusoff: cannot officially receive an extension until July 1. Still has another year on current contract.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) April 2, 2013
Kiprusoff’s playing time with the sinking Flames has been limited this year because of a sprained MCL he suffered early in the season. And when the 36-year-old netminder has played, he hasn’t been at his best.
In 18 games this season, Kiprusoff is 6-10-3, with a .868 save percentage, a 3.64 goals-against average and no shutouts.
Yet, according to TSN’s Bob McKenzie, Dave Nonis isn’t the only GM interested in Kiprusoff.
There's a team other than TOR also talking to CGY about Kiprusoff.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) April 1, 2013
Considering what the Flames received for Iginla and Bouwmeester, their asking price for Kiprusoff is likely far lower than what the Canucks are looking to get for Roberto Luongo and, of course, what the Kings would expect for Jonathan Bernier.
With that said, goaltending has not been an issue whatsoever for Toronto lately, as the Maple Leafs have gone 5-0-2 in their last seven games.
James Reimer has four of those wins, including a shutout victory versus the Ottawa Senators on Saturday night. Ben Scrivens has only made one start in the previous two weeks but made the most of the opportunity, stopping 40 of 42 shots to earn a win over the Florida Panthers.
Overall, the two goaltenders have similar numbers this season, except in the win/loss columns.
Reimer, age 25, is 13-4-4 with a .920 save percentage, 2.52 GAA and two shutouts.
Scrivens, age 26, is 7-8-0 with a .918 save percentage, 2.59 GAA and two shutouts.
The Leafs certainly aren’t as desperate as they have been in previous months, or years, to acquire a goaltender. However, given how young and inexperienced Reimer and Scrivens are, adding Kiprusoff could be beneficial as the Leafs look to make their first playoff appearance since 2003-04.
Perhaps playing meaningful games would help turn Kiprusoff’s season around. At the very least, he would provide a veteran presence in the dressing room.
Regardless of how much (or little) the Leafs would have to give up for Kiprusoff; the potential trade will be a topic of hot debate in Leafs Nation.