Just a day after an arbitrator awarded Antti Niemi $2.75M per year, the Blackhawks decided that price was too high and then signed free agent goaltender Marty Turco to a 1 year, $1.5M contract. It won’t be Chicago but where will Niemi end up next season?
With his great performance in last season’s playoffs, a lot of teams are very interested in Niemi. Some teams include Islanders, Philadelphia, San Jose, Washington, Edmonton, Los Angeles, and Florida.
Florida and Washington are the two teams most interested in Niemi and would be perfect fits. The only piece missing in the Washington Capitals puzzle is a solid goaltender. Bringing in Niemi would land them with one of the top young goalies in the league to go along with the NHL’s top offense. The Panther’s GM, Dale Tallon, was actually the one to bring Niemi to Chicago and is a huge believer in him. There is a chance Tallon could swoop him up again. I believe Washington would be the number one pick for Niemi. Washington already has an arsenal of star players ready to dominate the NHL where Florida is a much younger, less experienced team that might take a few years to be able to contend for a playoff spot.