With Darcy Kuemper and Antti Raanta entrenched as the one-two punch in Arizona, it was only a matter of time before goalie Eric Comrie was on the move again. That trade has now occurred with the Coyotes announcing that they’ve dealt him to the Red Wings in exchange for defenseman Vili Saarijarvi.
Comrie joined Arizona via waiver claim at the beginning of the season with Raanta unavailable to play. However, he didn’t dress for them upon his return so he hasn’t played at all in 2019-20 with the exception of a four-game conditioning stint with AHL Tucson where he posted a 2.75 GAA and a .900 SV% in that stretch. The 24-year-old has a total of five NHL games under his belt from his time with Winnipeg (who drafted him in the second round back in 2013), collecting a 4.21 GAA with a .870 SV%. He’s in the first season of a two-year deal that carries a $700K cap hit. It’s a two-way contract this season and converts to a one-way pact for 2020-21.
Comrie will find himself serving a similar role with Detroit. Jimmy Howard was placed on injured reserve yesterday while Jonathan Bernier was forced to play part of a game despite being quite sick earlier in the week. With Bernier now healthy, Calvin Pickard will likely return to AHL Grand Rapids and Comrie will serve as the backup until Howard returns at which point he’ll be a third-string option once again.
As for Saarijarvi, he was a 2015 third-round pick of Detroit. He was an offensive threat at the major junior level with stints in Flint and Mississauga of the OHL but that hasn’t translated to much success in the pros yet. He has played in 13 AHL games with the Griffins this season, recording just a single assist. The 22-year-old is in the final year of his entry-level deal and carries a cap hit that’s just under $698K.