The St. Louis Blues already lost Carter Hutton on the open market, and have now found their replacement goaltender. Chad Johnson—formerly of the Buffalo Sabres, where Hutton ended up—has signed a one-year $1.75MM contract with the Blues.
Johnson should serve as a one-year stopgap behind starter Jake Allen to allow goaltending prospect Ville Husso develop in the AHL for one more season. Husso, who posted a 2.42 GAA and a .922 save percentage with the AHL’s San Antonio Rampage remains their best option for a long-term goaltender, but the team felt he needed another season in the AHL before he was ready for NHL duty.
The 32-year-old veteran has been a reliable backup for five seasons, although he truly struggled last year in Buffalo behind their porous defense and complained about the team at the end of the year. Johnson finished the season with a horrid 3.55 GAA and a .891 save percentage, but fared much better the previous two years.