After reviewing the forwards and the defenseman under contract for next season, it is now time to check out the last position – goaltenders.
Luongo returned after spending parts of eight years with the Vancouver Canucks to a team where he owns most of the major goaltending records already.
Ellis was brought to town to be the backup to Luongo, shipping Tim Thomas to the Dallas Stars to get him. Thomas and Luongo have a notable history and it was ultimately decided that the two couldn’t exist together.
Luongo was brilliant in his return, posting a shutout in his first start back and a .924 SP in 14-games. Ellis numbers were horrendous, not posting a single victory in six games and posting a 4.81 GAA and .836 SP.
He did play good in some spurts, and kept the Panthers in some games that they shouldn’t have been. He is a free agent at the end of this coming season, only has a 900k cap hit – so a buyout or burying him in the minors isn’t out of the question if they want to bring in another backup.
Any goalie conversation for the foreseeable future begins and ends with Luongo and who the guy who will back him up. Ellis doesn’t really give you a confident feeling on Lu’s day’s off, and if they want to extend his career (he is 35-years old) – it would be in the team’s best future to give him an extra day off here and there.
And that would mean having a quality backup or Ellis playing much, much better than he did in his short stint.
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