Wednesday, July 05, 2006


Dan Cloutier to the LA Kings.

There was much rejoicing in the kingdom as the Canucks managed to find somehow nice enough, the Pavol Demitra-free Los Angeles Kings, to take Dan Cloutier and his $2.55mil contract off of their hands and free up some much needed cap space.

A familiar sight...

Now, I dislike Cloutier more than I should (not personally, just as a goalie). He's a great fighter and not a bad guy at all, but he's just not a good NHL Goaltender. He gets injured often and at the worst times (we can partially blame Marc Crawford for that), and who can ever forget the Nick Lidstrom goal of doom.

The problem is that many people are fooled by the fact that, prior to this season, Cloutier was always able to rack up some nice win totals because the Canucks had a good team in front of him and Cloutier played a lot of games.

Look at the disparity between Cloutier's league rank in WINS compared to SAVE PERCENTAGE.

2004: Wins 33 (4th-T), SV% .914 (19th)
2003: Wins 33 (7th-T), SV% .908 (22nd)
2002: Wins 31 (11th), SV% .901 (33rd!)

Cloutier never finished in the upper half of starting goaltenders in SV% and always hovered at average or below-average. Overall, Cloutier was the typical replaceable goalie that could have good games now and then, but was never going to carry the Canucks to anything glorious.

We're still waiting to hear the full details of the deal, but I'll be happy even if the Canucks get nothing in return. Being able to dump Cloutier's full salary on someone else and have him let in goals against the Canucks is reward enough.

(edit: Canucks are getting a second-round selection in 2007 and a conditional selection in 2009 according to Not a bad return for a salary dump. )

I'm not even a Canucks fan, but as a former goalie, Cloutier can make you cringe the way he dives from side to side sometimes.

Too good to be a backup, too inconsistent to be a starter.. hard place to be for a 2.5 million dollar man. Good for the Canucks being able to get rid of him relatively quickly.

Nonis must have heard Lombardi on draft day talking about his need for goaltending depth.
Wouldn't want Cloutier against you in a fight though...
You're right, Jes: It's a good return. I'm hearing some pundits from Vancouver already saying they didn't get enough, but that $2.5-million cap room is all Nonis had to buy.
The Avs can use a goalie after Kolesnik decided to go to Russia leaving them with Tyler Weiman as back-up now.

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