Carolina Hurricanes Free Agency Preview: Goaltenders

Robin Lehner, Vegas Golden Knights (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Robin Lehner, Vegas Golden Knights (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) /
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Jacob Markstrom

A bit of a late bloomer, Jacob Markstrom has had a solid campaign for the Vancouver Canucks this season. The main reason they are even in the playoff picture out west, Markstrom would be a bit of a gamble for whomever signs him to a big contract.

Markstrom hasn’t had that long history of being a true number one that other names of this list have had. Really just coming into his own two seasons ago, he had spent a majority of his career backing up elite goaltenders like Roberto Luongo until the 2017-18 season.

Splitting his ten year career between Florida and Vancouver the 30 year old native of Sweden has appeared in 272 contest, starting 256 of them.  In those games, he post a record of 110-118-32. With a save percentage of .911 and a GAA of 2.8, his numbers may not be as impressive as Lehner or Holtby but they don’t really tell the full story.

What sets Markstrom apart is his big 6′ 6” frame. As a big body, it’s hard for opposing players to properly screen him. With his size he is able to see over and through most guys, forcing them to beat him five hole or outright, rather than via tip ins.

Missing some time with a lower body injury, his absence was severely felt in Vancouver, as they began a slide out of a comfortable playoff position. Should the NHL resume with some regular season games, he should be good to return to their lineup.

Yet to appear in a playoff game, you have to think that will have some influence on his decision during free agency. Should he see the Canucks as a possible contending team in the near future, he’s most than likely to re-up with them but if not, he would be an interest short term option for other teams.