As most NHL teams gear up for a weekend of salary cap problem solving and trading assets, it’s hard to make predictions on what the Anaheim Ducks should do, if anything, to enhance their roster prior to the impending trade deadline on Wednesday.
Executives won’t be taking the weekend off by any means, but they also are fortunate enough to have no major voids to fill on the Honda Center ice, especially when it comes to the man in that blue paint every night.
At the onset of the season, it looked like Anaheim’s net was Viktor Fasth‘s for the taking, as veteran Jonas Hiller‘s impeding free agency and role in the Ducks’ shortened playoff run last year gave reason for some predictable goalie shopping. But as Fasth was placed on long term injured reserve in November, the Ducks had no choice but to lean back on Hiller and hope for the best, which is exactly what Hiller delivered in the form of a No. 1 NHL ranking on the heels of a 14 home game win streak. In fact, it’s hard to imagine anyone doing a better job.
But on nights Hiller couldn’t play, Anaheim quickly discovered rookie Frederik Andersen wasn’t so bad either, as the young goalie is currently 14-3-0 bringing as much dependability to the net as he does sheer talent. While most clubs pride themselves on strong backup, the Ducks can even go one deeper with 20 year-old John Gibson, goalie of their affiliate club the Norfolk Admirals, who is causing enough waves in the AHL for certain organizations to forget seeking out Hiller, Fasth or Andersen all together and taking a look at Gibson instead.
While Ducks GM Bob Murray promised no Hiller trade prior to the end of season, predicting what cards the Ducks will play given this kind of depth is no easy task. Because as fun as it is to sit on a million dollars simply for the truth of being called a millionaire, any smart business person knows investment is key to long-term success, ad the Ducks aren’t here for the short-term spotlight.
But for now, all goalies sit tight in Anaheim’s organization, enjoying the benefits of being the best one, two, three, four tandem the NHL currently has to offer. It might not last forever, but for the Ducks, this isn’t a bad problem to have.