The Edmonton Oilers have acquired their new starting goaltender. The team has traded the 57th, 79th and 184th picks to the Rangers in exchange for G Cam Talbot and the 209th pick in the 2015 NHL draft.
I profiled Talbot a lot this spring, starting with off-season targets back in April. Here’s the thing, Cam Talbot is a risk because he has never been a number one goaltender for a full season. That being said, he is a very good risk for the Edmonton Oilers. They are betting on a goalie that has had success at every level prior to this.
Talbot posted a .926 SV% in 36 games this past season, and was tremendous for the Rangers when Henrik Lundqvist went down for a two month span with injuries. In 2013-14, Talbot posted a solid .941 SV% in 21 games for the big club.
In the AHL, Talbot had seasons of .913, .918 and .924 in consecutive seasons. He improved every season in Hartford, and forced his way to the NHL. There’s no doubt with this player, he’s got NHL level talent as a goaltender. The only question is if he can translate it to a starter’s work load.
Let’s be honest, he probably won’t post a .926 SV% in Edmonton behind this defense next season, but that doesn’t matter. He doesn’t need to be exceptional, he just needs to be average. Statistically, Edmonton had the NHL’s worst goaltending last season, just average will be a huge step forward.
I’m not the biggest fan of last night’s trade for Griffin Reinhart, I will admit, but I’m a big fan of this deal. Edmonton is making a bet on a goaltender, but in my mind they are making a solid bet on a player who has proven he can play at this level.
Tighten up the defensive system and improve the players on the blue-line. Do that, and Cam Talbot will be just fine for these Edmonton Oilers. Solid work by Peter Chiarelli here.