After being bought out by the San Jose Sharks, Martin Jones has quickly found a new home. Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet reports that Jones will be joining the Philadelphia Flyers. The deal is expected to be a one-year contract at $2MM.
It is easy to dismiss Jones as a player not worth getting excited about. The past three seasons in San Jose have been nothing short of horrendous four the veteran netminder, especially compared to his lofty contract. However, Jones was carrying a heavy load as the unchallenged starter for the Sharks, playing a workhorse schedule despite his struggles. The expectation is entirely different in Philadelphia. Carter Hart is coming off a difficult campaign of his own, but the talented young keeper should rebound and will be given every opportunity to hold on to the starting job. Jones meanwhile will be looked upon to mentor Hart and provide competent play at the backup position. With far less pressure, he could very well return to form.
With that said, the Flyers’ choice of Jones as their No. 2 at this salary is intriguing. Philly has only $8MM in cap space with Hart and Travis Sanheim in need of new contracts and two other roster sports to fill and could have benefited from a more affordable backup. If they were going to give out a substantial contract to a keeper, it likely should have been someone they trusted as the starter if Hart continued to struggle. The past few years have not supported the idea that Jones can still be that player. So he instead is a pricey backup, which is not ideal for the Flyers.