There are several questions roaming around LeafLand these days and one of them involves forward Nazem Kadri and the other major one technically shouldn’t even be a major one.
Anyone who cares about it has to wonder a)why GM David Nonis went out and found a goalie that may be able to challenge James Reimer and b)what is it that makes anyone think that Jonathan Bernier is any good in the first place?
He came from a Stanley Cup winning team, that is true. But he didn’t win it. Jonathan Quick did. If the Leafs had somehow acquired him then if my name is James Reimer I am shopping myself around like a salesperson, trying to find a new home.
Apparently Nonis’ reason for trading for Bernier was to challenge Reimer but I don’t understand why Bernier. He hasn’t done much at this level.
A quick look at both goaltender’s statistics should tell you that Reimer is better, albeit not by much, but he is slightly better. In this case that should be enough. Especially after winning three playoff games in May and damn near close to a fourth one that may well have set the City of Toronto on fire.
Twenty-five-year-olds James Reimer and Jonathan Bernier, the Leafs have two plausible starting goalies.
Reimer played in 33 of the Leafs 48 games last season (Ben Scrivens beat the Canadiens in the season opener last year which is difficult to forget), and Reimer obviously played in all seven playoff games.
Reimer has now played in over 100 games for Leafs.
The biggest mistake in this goaltending mess is the extra money that Bernier (who may not even get to play much) will cost.
The Leafs retained $500,000 in salary when they dealt both Scrivens and Matt Frattin (as well as a second round draft pick to LA) and ‘upgrading from Scrivens to Bernier meant spending $2.5M more in net.
CapGeek.com indicates that they now are left with under $5M in cap space with which to sign arguably their two biggest pieces from the shortened season in Kadri and defenceman Cody Franson.So, Leafs must have felt real strong about trading for Bernier, yet there’s no ‘writing on the wall’ to suggest that he could play even better than Reimer already has?
During the shortened season, Reimer played 33 games, Bernier in 14 with his former team, the Kings. There is a difference of.002 in their save percentages, and a .003 difference in their career save percentage.