Two-time Vezina winner Tim Thomas wants back in the NHL after stepping away for a year. Stay right here to follow all the latest news on where he may land.
UPDATE: Saturday, July 6 at 11:23 a.m. ET by Nicholas Goss
TSN's Pierre LeBrun has reported that Tim Thomas' agent Bill Zito is looking at possible destinations for his client.
Zito reiterated that Thomas has instructed him to investigate what possible opportunities there are in a potential NHL return...— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) July 1, 2013
Three teams have reached out to Tim Thomas camp so far...— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) July 3, 2013
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Controversial two-time Vezina Trophy winner Tim Thomas is one of the biggest names among potential free agents.
Thomas is now an unrestricted free agent with the New York Islanders not tolling his contract next year. This was confirmed by Sportsnet's Nick Kypreos earlier this week:
All of this follows on the heels of a year of self-imposed exile from the NHL. Thomas is a former Conn Smythe Trophy recipient and backstopped the Boston Bruins to the Stanley Cup in 2011. The native of Flint, Michigan, had one year left on his contract when he decided last summer that he would not play in 2012-13. The four-year contract had a cap hit of $5 million.
Thomas based the layoff on wanting a break from professional hockey and the opportunity to spend more time with his family. The Bruins subsequently suspended Thomas for failing to report to the team’s training camp. He was then traded to the New York Islanders in February of this year for a conditional second-round pick in 2014 or 2015.
While Thomas’ play was excellent in the last few seasons, his off-ice behavior was somewhat erratic, with some politically-charged social media activity. He brought a lot of negative attention to both himself and the organization with his decision to forego the Bruins’ ceremony at the White House to celebrate their 2011 Stanley Cup championship.
The Quebec Nordiques (now the Colorado Avalanche) drafted Thomas in the ninth round in 1994. In addition to winning the Vezina Trophy twice and the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2011, he earned a silver medal as a member of the U.S. Olympic team at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.
Thomas’ career numbers are strong. He was 196-121-45 in 378 games with the Bruins, including 31 shutout victories. He holds a career 2.48 GAA and .921 save percentage.