Martin Brodeur’s a Free Agent. What Now?Posted by whitecovermagazine
Now that the only goalie who will never leave New Jersey is all set to leave New Jersey (apparently), every goaltender’s status has been tossed into a salad. Tossing salad.
It’s not like Jonathan Quick is in danger of losing his role with the Kings, now that he’s signed a 10-year contract worth a Kardashian buttload of money. Still, if Brodeur can go, you never know what will happen, do you?
It certainly adds intrigue and uncertainty to the likes of Jonathan Bernier (Quick’s backup) and Roberto Luongo (Cory Schneider’s backup?) who are now (apparently, again) in need of new teams. I mean, what will happen to Roberto if another team decides to just sign Marty to a one-year contract worth slightly less than Luongo’s?
And, really, couldn’t Luongo just go to New Jersey? It’s not like he hasn’t stepped in for Brodeur before…
They are similar goaltenders with a similar style, and they’ve been linked ever since Luongo entered the league a short five years after Marty.
They’re the other’s heir apparent. Luongo in New Jersey would rock, especially if the Panthers decided to give Brodeur a one-year deal while Jacob Markstrom ripens into a starting goaltender. And, of course, a team afraid of Luongo’s big ol’ contract (which is actually pretty reasonable) can go for Jonathan Bernier, if they feel comfortable entrusting their fate to an unproven junior star.
Why not Toronto? Well, maybe they’ll bite on Bernier’s hook, but something tells us they’re a little wary of trusting netminders who haven’t proven themselves at a consistent starting salary. Jonas Gustavsson, James Reimer, Vesa Toskala, Andrew Raycroft… life blows when you don’t have a future Hall of Famer in net, and Luongo could very well be that guy.
Bottom line? Now that Brodeur has entered the fray, it’s like Katniss Everdeen shooting an apple out of the guy with the weird sideburns’ hand in The Hunger Games. There’s a new challenger, and everyone else best beware.
Sure, there’s nobody better (and available) than Roberto Luongo right now, but maybe his suitors weren’t looking for that. If you’re Brian Burke, you’re just trying to make a move that won’t get you fired. If you’re Florida or Tampa, you’re just trying to survive until a stab of luck kicks in and propels you to the Eastern Conference Final.
All of a sudden, Martin Brodeur holds all the cards. Being fashionably late rocks.