2. Darcy Kuemper
There have been plenty of rumours swirling around the Arizona Coyotes this offseason. They are looking to slash payroll, they can’t afford to pay guys their signing bonuses, they have hardly any draft picks because they either traded them for Taylor Hall or lost them for cheating by hosting a private draft combine.
So, they want to move out players who make money and bring in draft picks. One player that has gained a lot of attention is goaltender Darcy Kuemper. The Arizona Coyotes netminder has been phenomenal for the past two seasons in the desert.
He finished 6th in Vezina voting this season and was tied for 5th last year. If not for injuries he could have been even higher on that list. He had a 2.33 GAA and a .925 SV% in 55 games in 2018-19 and this season he posted a 2.22 GAA and a .928 SV% in 29 starts.
Kuemper was fantastic in this year’s postseason. In the Coyotes three wins, I’ll say that again, I’m talking about games they won here, he faced 43, 40 and 52 shots. Again, those were the games that the Coyotes won. Obviously, Kuemper was their MVP in the postseason.
He is signed for two more years with a cap hit of $4.5 million. They Flames could certainly absorb that contract but the Coyotes won’t be giving him away. A trade for Kuemper would at the very least cost the Flames their first round pick which is 19th overall. Depending on any other offers that the Coyotes receive, Calgary may even have to add something else to that.
It would be a steep price to pay, but the next two years are going to be enormous for the Flames franchise. Johnny Gaudreau and Mark Giordano could be an unrestricted free agents in two years and Matthew Tkachuk will be a restricted free agent again. Having an excellent goaltender for those two seasons is imperative to give the team its best chance to win with this group.
Of course, getting a stud goaltender without giving up assets from your own roster would be ideal…