According to Frank Seravalli, the Washington Capitals could trade Vitek Vanecek to acquire an upgrade in goal.
Seravalli noted that the Capitals are after a “starting, Stanley Cup-caliber” goaltender, and when looking at their current tandem, it’s hard to determine if either Vanecek or Ilya Samsonov fit that description. Both goaltenders have had rough patches this season, which naturally have created question marks regarding the team’s goaltending situation.
Out of the duo, Vanecek has actually performed better. In 24 games, he has a 10-6-5 record, 2.39 goals-against average, and .915 save percentage. He is a restricted free agent at the end of the season and will expect a raise from his current $716,667 cap hit, though. Therefore, we could see them move the 26-year-old if it means that they are getting more stability in goal.
Samsonov was selected in the first round of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, so the Capitals may not be as open as moving him when he’s still just in his third NHL season. Perhaps that is why Seravalli didn’t mark him down as a trade target from the Capitals. In 25 games this season, he has a 14-6-3 record, 2.89 goals-against average, and a .902 save percentage.
Nevertheless, it will be interesting to see who the Capitals have as their goalie tandem by the deadline’s end.
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