DETROIT – Calvin Pickard is expected to add depth and competition to the Detroit Red Wings goaltending situation.
The team reportedly is set to sign the 27-year-old goalie to a two-year deal, according to TSN's Frank Seravelli.
Sounds like Calvin Pickard is joining the #RedWings on a two-year deal. He's expected to compete with Jonathan Bernier in training camp to back up Jimmy Howard.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) June 30, 2019
Pickard split this past season between Philadelphia and Arizona. His numbers were not great. In 11 games for the Flyers he posted a .863 save percentage. In six games for the Coyotes he posted a .892 save percentage.
He hasn't been considered a starter in the NHL since 2016-17 when he played 50 games for the Colorado Avalanche (15 wins, .904 save percentage). And he won't be considered Detroit's starting goalie going into this season. Jimmy Howard, 35, signed a one-year extension in March and remains the starter for now.
Jonathan Bernier, meanwhile, now has competition for the backup role. He was very up-and-down this past season, his first of a three-year contract with Detroit. The 30-year-old goalie posted a .904 save percentage through 35 games played.
The Red Wings have had some of the worst defense in the league the past two seasons, so it's very difficult to be critical of any goalie on this squad. Both Bernier and Howard had great stretches at certain points in the season. But both also spent a lot of time watching their team make neutral and defensive zone turnovers, execute bad breakouts, show some very poor defensive zone positioning, etc. etc., and their numbers suffered from it.
With that said, this situation could be a nice opportunity for both Bernier and Pickard. A little competition can help. Moreover, Howard has been prone to mid-season injuries. The starting job could be up for grabs at some point.