Needing that surefire number one goalie, the Ottawa Senators were able to acquire the two-time Stanley Cup champion
The Ottawa Senators acquired goaltender Matt Murray from Pittsburgh, sending 52nd Overall in this year’s draft and forward prospect Jonathan Gruden.
Ottawa got Murray without giving up a king’s ransom, conceding a middle second-round pick (G Joel Blomqvist) and a C-level prospect for their new starting goaltender. Most pundits and fans were expecting the 28th overall pick to be in the trade discussions for Matt Murray, not surrendering that pick and instead, trading the second-round pick was great work by Pierre Dorion.
With recent news revealing that last season’s starting goalie Anders Nilsson is still dealing with concussion symptoms which have been prevalent since the middle of December, Nilsson’s future is up in the air.
Ottawa was left in a predicament, they would need to acquire an NHL-caliber goalie to replace Nilsson, it was necessary because their only NHL-ready goalie is an inexperienced Marcus Hogberg who can’t be relied upon to be the starter yet.
Murray 26, has already played 250 career NHL games and has proven he can perform best when it matters the most, the reason he has two Stanley Cups. Admittingly, Murray did struggle last season with Pittsburgh and his falling out with the Penguins has a lot to do with 2020 NHL All-Star Tristan Jarry. He posted an 0.899 SV% last season and he wasn’t playing near the level of Jarry. Some people worry about Murray’s “fall” from his peak (i.e Cup wins), but he was solid in 2018-19, he boasted a 0.919 SV% in 50 games. Some people think Murray is a while removed from his past great play, but it’s most likely last season will be an outlier.
According to IcyData, Murray was 8th in GSAA (Goals Saved Above Average), a stat that describes how many goals a goaltender allowed, compared to how much a league average goalie would allow on the same amount of shots. Murray registered 31.89 and was a well above-average starter just in 2018-19, just one season removed.
If Ottawa can manage to regain Murray’s form, this trade will be a slam dunk!