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Gambling with Humans, Part IV

What an opportune time to look at the goaltending possibilities for Vancouver in the upcoming free agency period.

What's that you say? "We have Luongo so why even bother?" Well, because first it would be a poor investment strategy on management's behalf to play him damn near 80 games a year yet again and, moreover, he's one groin pull/concussion/puck to the throat/errant Nagy crease crashing disaster away from sinking the hopes of the team that is built around him.

Secondly, as the Province notes this morning, Sabby is going to test the shallow end of the free agency pool. I do like the guy so more power to him if he bolts, particularly if he finds a GM who wants to pay him more then $450,000 a year because he did his job for three minutes in a playoff game. In fact, he should just head to LA now because I feel confident he can give their crew a run for their money.

So, if Sabby flies the coop, what is left out there to buddy up with Luongo and keep that bench warm?

J.S. Giguere - Not a chance in hell
Niklas Backstrom - See above; although it would be fun to screw the Wild by getting him
Curtis Joseph - FORE!
Dominik Hasek - I really don't care what this man does
David Aebischer - See above
Kevin Weekes - No reunion here
Mathieu Garon - Not bad backup if he wants it at a substantial discount
Robert Esche - Same issue as Garon plus carries some injury woes

Rounding out the cheaper options include:

Brian Boucher, Dany Sabourin, Ed Belfour, Jamie McLennan, JS Aubin, Jocelyn Thibault, Jussi Markkanen, Karl Goehring, Mike Dunham, Mike Smith, Scott Clemmensen, Sean Burke, Ty Conklin, Wade Dubielewicz and Wade Flaherty.

At the end of the day it's not going to matter much since, for the first time in this fan's tenure of a Canuck fan, the crease isn't a problem. But it's good to be thorough so...

UFA Goalies
Will break bank/move contracts for: No one. See redundancy for more detail.
Hold your breath and pray: Smith
Go nuts, but don't expect much: Boucher, McLennan, JS Aubin
Plan a project: Goehring, Dubielewicz
Look fondly at Manitoba: Ellis, Flaherty, Grumet-Morris, MacIntyre. Also that Schneider bloke out in beantown.
Just get a warm body: Clemmensen (he knows the score), Flaherty, Dunham and Shredder because he can double as an maintenance guy (skate sharpening, quick stitch jobs, bench security, haiku's) while he sits and waits. Plus his blades will impale the pucks to reduce rebounds and any crease crashers will be murdered.