Canucks sign Braden Holtby to 2-year deal

The Vancouver Canucks have signed free agent goaltender Braden Holtby to a two-year deal. Here is the breakdown of his new contract.

This year’s free agency has been quite unusual but the drama is still here. With Jacob Markstrom‘s time with the Vancouver Canucks coming to an end, Jim Benning has decided to sign long-time Washington Capitals’ netminder, Braden Holtby. The contract is two years long at $4.3 million a season. This means the Canucks spend roughly $5.3 million dollars on their goaltending which is much cheaper than what it would have been had they re-signed Markstrom.

Thatcher Demko is going to be the goaltender of the future for the Canucks and having a veteran like Holtby to guide him and support him through the process is huge. He’s spent 10 years in the NHL and was with the Capitals every step of the way until he finally won the Stanley Cup in 2018. He’s a Vezina and Jennings Trophy winner and is well-known to be a very good teammate.

In his ten years with Washington, they’ve made it to the playoffs eight times and he brings much experience for both Demko and the rest of the Canucks’ young core. If we look at the Stanley Cup champions Tampa Bay Lightning, they had a very good balance of young talent and veteran leadership that have already won before. This balance is so important and bringing in someone who won the Cup just two years ago is a huge help.

In 468 games played, he has a 458-282-122 record and 35 shutouts. While he is 30-years-old and his stats are on the decline, his workload won’t be the same as it was in Washington as he will be in tandem (or even at times backing up) Demko. This will make sure that he is well-rested for his starts and will greatly help his performance.

Another important factor that was reported by Rick Dhaliwal was that Holtby would be exposed by Vancouver in the upcoming expansion draft. This is really important as they now ensure that Demko is there to stay for the long term.