#4 Anton Khudobin
The only goaltender on this list, Anton Khudobin is a guy who, undeservedly, kind of flew under the radar a bit as a Hurricane. After watching the horrendous goaltending trio of Cam Ward, Dan Ellis and Justin Peters in the lockout-shortened 2013 season, the Hurricanes knew they needed a change. So, the following summer in free agency, they went out and found Anton Khudobin.
Khudobin was unproven, coming off his only NHL season, where he had a .920sv% and a 9-4-1 record for the Bruins. He signed a 1-year contract worth 800,000 with the Hurricanes. That contract would go on to have maybe the best value of any contract in team history.
Khudobin was an absolute wall in his first year with the team, going 19-14-1 with a 2.30 GAA and a .926sv%, winning the NHL’s Player of the Month award in January with a 10-4-0 record alongside a .927sv%, and single-handedly willed the Carolina Hurricanes into the playoff picture. Despite his great success, head coach Kirk Muller refused to give Khudobin the reigns, and inexplicably kept Justin Peters and Cam Ward in the rotation.
The Hurricanes, though, rewarded him with a 2-year extension for 4.5 million total. From there, it was downhill. Khudobin lost his confidence, and followed up his terrific year with a brutal 8-17-6 record and a .900sv% in the 2014-15 season, looking like a shell of the goalie he was the previous year. Following his rough season, he was shipped off to Anaheim for (the legendary) James Wisnewski, and the Hurricanes replaced him with Eddie Lack.
Since then, Khudobin has rediscovered his form. He signed a 2-year deal worth 5 million with the Dallas Stars last summer, and had a phenomenal .923sv% in 41 games the past year, and formed a stellar 1-2 punch with Ben Bishop.
So here we are, left to wonder what could have been. Khudobin arguably had the most successful individual regular season by any goaltender in Hurricanes history in that 2013-14 season, and unfortunately, was never awarded a fair opportunity to build on it.