The Detroit Red Wings may be in the market for a goaltender during the offseason after all.
According to a report from TVA Sports reporter Renaud Lavoi, veteran net minder Jonathan Bernier is planning to hit the open market after having spent the last three years wearing the Winged Wheel:
"Another goalie hitting the market. Hearing that Jonathan Bernier will be available on July 28 after making the decision to see what’s out there for him. He was with the @DetroitRedWingsfor the last 3 seasons."
The veteran goaltender is already well traveled, having played for the Los Angeles Kings, Toronto Maple Leafs, Anaheim Ducks and Colorado Avalanche before his arrival in the Motor City. And he's in large part been one of the few positives on the ice for Detroit the past three years.
At the end of this season, it sounded as though he was intent on staying in the Motor City, though as we all know, plans can change.
"My family and I really like it here,” Bernier said. “I feel comfortable at the rink, on the ice, so it would be my No. 1 choice. I definitely would like to stay here.”
Despite the fact that the Red Wings won't be ready to contend any time soon, Bernier appreciates the challenge of being a goaltender on a rebuilding club that's headed in the right direction.
“When I signed, I didn’t see (Henrik) Zetterberg retiring that year, but I knew they were going to that (rebuilding) stage,” Bernier said. “It’s a great challenge, as a goalie especially, you can make that rebuild faster if you’re playing well and get some wins.
“I lived it in Toronto and the one thing I regret is going through the pain and not being there when they’re better. That’s one of the reasons why I want to stay here. I finally see we’re getting better. We got some great, young guys. I can see we’re headed in the right direction, so I’d like to see the process towards the end.”
The Red Wings do have fellow veteran goaltender Thomas Greiss under contract for another season, and will have plenty of options to choose from in the free-agent market, including the likes of Jaroslav Halak, Devan Dubnyk, James Reimer and old friend Petr Mrazek.