The Tampa Bay Lightning traded away Peter Budaj earlier this month due to a glut of goaltenders in their organization, and now have brought back one of those from the minor leagues. Eddie Pasquale has re-signed under a one-year two-way contract, bringing back the goaltender they acquired in a midseason trade.
Pasquale, 27, has had quite the minor league career since being drafted by the Atlanta Thrashers in 2009. Seeing time with the Chicago Wolves, St. John’s IceCaps, Grand Rapids Griffins and Bakersfield Condors, he played the best hockey of his career after joining the Syracuse Crunch this season. Posting a .938 save percentage down the stretch, he’ll be an excellent goaltender to pair with the young Connor Ingram going forward.
While Louis Domingue is the NHL backup—which is far from guaranteed at this point, as he remains a restricted free agent—Ingram is the next in line to back up Andrei Vasilevskiy. The Lightning hope they can mold their young goaltender into another starting-caliber netminder, and having a veteran backup like Pasquale to rely on will be a big boost for his development.