As first reported by Adrian Dater of BSN last night, Jonathan Bernier has signed a one-year contract with the Colorado Avlanche. The deal is worth $2.75MM, and puts Bernier into a backup role behind Semyon Varlamov.
Bernier was one of the more interesting options on the market this summer, after a solid stint replacing John Gibson in Anaheim after he went down to injury. Bernier has always had the talent to start in the NHL, but never could find the consistency required to put up solid numbers when given the job. In Toronto his value plummeted to the point where he was traded to Anaheim for essentially nothing, and now will keep re-building in Colorado. That doesn’t seem like a very good place to do it, since the Avalanche were miserable in their own end last year, but at least he’ll have the security of Varlamov (and almost three million dollars) to work with.
For Colorado, not only does Bernier replace Calvin Pickard as a more than capable backup, but also provides them with another trade chip for next season. If given a chance to play even in limited minutes, Bernier will be sought-after at the deadline by any team not happy with their goaltending. Though the Avalanche aren’t expected to compete, they can definitely use all the assets they can get.