Formerly the backup goaltender for the Boston Bruins, unrestricted free agent Anton Khudobin has decided to head down south to the Carolina Hurricanes on a one-year deal. His new deal is worth $800,000 and will result in him becoming an unrestricted free agent at this time next year.
Khudobin, who appeared in 14 games for the Bruins last season and tallied up a 9-4-1 record with a .920 save percentage and 2.32 goals-against average, honed his craft in Providence for much of 2011-12 and part of 2010-11 after a trade from the Minnesota Wild organization. The 27-year-old actually has a wealth of experience at the AHL level even if his NHL resume is a little thin at the moment. He’s even played in the KHL during a few separate stints, although his most recent one due to the lockout wasn’t exactly anything worth writing home about.
Adding Khudobin plugs a hole for the Hurricanes, a team that definitely had some struggles in net last season when Cam Ward was hurt. Justin Peters did what he could, but team general manager Jim Rutherford obviously wasn’t satisfied and decided to hit the market for a new choice. He now says that with a healthy Ward and newcomer Khudobin together, he’s completed an elite goaltending tandem. We’ll see if that actually comes to pass, though.
This plugs one hole, but creates another for the Bruins. Who will back up Tuukka Rask now? The most promising choice is Niklas Svedberg. The young Swede played 48 games with Providence this year, boasting a 37-8-2 record with a .925 save percentage and 2.17 goals-against average. He also went deep into the AHL playoffs, notching an even 6-6-0 record, although his other stats got a bit high because the P-Bruins took a big loss.
Plus, he has been signed to an entry-level deal with the big Bruins. His ascension might create a little more shuffling further down the line as the team redoes the tandem for Providence, but for Boston, he may be just the right choice.