This blog is in response to the latest slew of rumors concerning the [former] Bulin Wall, Nikolai Khabibulin. Per EK's latest blog: "The Avalanche are currenty rumoured to be getting into the Khabibulin race." He goes on to say, "I frankly don't get it." Well that would make two of us, at least.
Let's take a look at some numbers, courtesy of NHLnumbers.com. The Avs currently are listed with a Cap hit of $44.022M next season. This number includes 14 forwards, 8 d-men, and 2 goalies. Still under consideration for signing: Joe Sakic and, realistically, Marek Svatos (sorry Peter but it's not looking good right now). Joe, unless he decides to take a home-town discount, will make around $6M again. Let's say, for blog's sake, it counts for $6M against the cap. This brings our total to $50.772M, without Svatty resigned and probably close to $53M+ if he does.
Now comes the trouble: Nik's contract is a whopping $6.75M and it ALL counts against the cap. Ouch. Now I realize we would trade someone (or a few someones) to get this guy, but unless we trade Hejduk, Khabibulin just doesn't seem plausible in an Avs uni. Don't get me wrong, I think he can be a good goalie again, but $6.75M?! Please no. I hope FG has the wit to wait until after next season to shop for a UFA Goalie.
Here are some potential UFA Goalies next season (assuming none re-sign prior):
Manny Fernandez, Tim Thomas, Ryan Miller, Ty Conklin, Mattieu Garon, Craig Anderson. And don't forget about Kari Lehtonen. Although he just re-signed, it was only a 1-yr contract, which (and I may be mistaken) makes him a UFA next year as he was a RFA this year.
A quick blurb about Marc Popovic. I don't know him at all - I've never seen him play so I can't really offer any meaningful chatter. Having said this and as already mentioned, Colorado has 8 d-men signed: Hannan, Foote, Liles, Leopold, Clark, Salei, Tjarnqvist, and Cumiskey. Now I'm not opposed to certain trades, but having never seen Popo play, I think I would rather take who we have now - I really like our D this year!
In summation (haha), I just can't see Khabi in burgundy next year unless it's part of a bigger package deal (which I can't see Col going for). Best of luck to him and to Popo wherever they turn up though!
as always: go avs go!