NHL free agency: McElhinney to Columbus, North Dakota, Duluth

It looks like former Tiger Curtis McElhinney will be contending for the No. 2 role in Columbus as a veteran backup. All the other netminders are 25 or younger on the team’s NHL roster while the “In The System” goalies are 20 and 19.

From NHL.com …

The Columbus Blue Jacketshave signed goaltender Curtis McElhinney, 29, to a one-year, two-way NHL-American Hockey League contract, club Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations and General Manager Scott Howson announced Sunday. McElhinney will earn $750,000 at the NHL level and $105,000 at the AHL level.

McElhinney, 29, has appeared in 69 career NHL games with the Flames, Ducks and Senators, compiling a 19-26-4 record with a 3.09 goals-against average, .899 save percentage and two shutouts. He was 1-0-0 with a 1.67 GAA and .944 SV% in two games with Phoenixin 2011-12, while going 10-13-0 with a 3.04 GAA and .907 SV% in 25 games with the AHL’sPortland Pirates. He was acquired by Columbus from Phoenix, along with two draft picks (second round in 2012 and fifth round in 2013), in exchange for Antoine Vermette on February 22, 2012 but did not appear in any games due to injury.

A native of London, Ontario, McElhinney was Calgary’s ninth pick, 176th overall, in the 2002 NHL Draft. He has appeared in 156 AHL games with Omaha, Quad-City and Portland and has posted a 74-62-5 record with a 2.39 GAA, .904 SV% and 13 shutouts since 2005. He was named to the AHL Second All-Star Team in 2007 after going 35-17-1 with a 2.13 GAA, .917 SV% and seven shutouts in 57 games with Omaha. Prior to his professional career, he spent four seasons at Colorado College, where he registered a 62-16-8 record with a 2.32 GAA and nine shutouts in 91 career games. In 2003, he was named to the WCHA First All-Star Team and NCAA West Second All-American Team, while being named to the WCHA First All-Star Team and NCAA West First All-American Team in 2005.

Here is a link to all the North Dakota free agents and where they and former Minnesota-Duluth players have signed as of Monday morning.

About paisleyhockey
I am a freelance writer specializing in sports with about 25 years of professional experience.

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