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Last week, goalie Miikka Kiprusoff threatened not to report to any team the Calgary Flames traded him to at the deadline, sparking a League-wide debate about the power a player without a no-trade clause could wield in the name of family.
Perhaps that’s what the Toronto Maple Leafs are trying to discern in getting permission from the Flames to speak with Kiprusoff’s agent about a trade and a contract extension, under 48 hours before the NHL trade deadline.
Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis has been vocal about his interest in adding a veteran goaltender to play alongside James Reimer and Kiprusoff's name has been front and centre. According to TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger, the Leafs have discussed a contract extension with Kiprusoff's agent.
Kiprusoff has one year remaining past this season on a six-year deal he signed prior to the 2008-09 season worth an average annual value of $5.8333 million.
The Calgary Sun reports that the Flames have extended the invite to talk with Kiprusoff to more than one NHL team. Keep in mind he can't sign an extension until July 1 under the terms of the CBA.
Is this an upgrade over the tandem of Ben Scrivens and James Reimer?
They’ve combined for a team GAA of 2.67 while Kiprusoff has a 3.52 GAA. Granted, different teams in front of them with different circumstances. But those are the numbers.
The Leafs duo had to deal with this Kirprusoff stuff last month too. From the Toronto Sun:
“That’s the way you have to handle it,” Scrivens said, wearing an omnipresent smile on his face. “Part of playing in Toronto are dealing with the endless rumours. And that’s fine. Because, as I said during the summer, once the rumours stop, that means people have stopped caring about hockey here. And that certainly would be the worst-case scenario.
“Listen, any way they can upgrade the team, they should go for it. Any way they can improve, I agree with it.
Now, this Kiprusoff stuff broke the same day that the Vancouver Canucks went public with multi-team discussions about Roberto Luongo that have gone “beyond the 'tire kicking' stage."
He’s younger than Kiprusoff and better, but has nine years remaining on his contract.
It’s hard to imagine one public leak isn’t related to the other, or that Dave Nonis would rather deal for Kipper rather than trade for Luongo (again). But time will tell.