Antti Niemi is a young, talented, NHL goalie who just won the Stanley Cup, but the Chicago Blackhawks are letting him go.
ESPN says that it’s because he is just too good. Niemi would have cost the Blackhawks another $2.75 million after a superb performance in the playoffs, and the Blackhawks would have had to let go of some other players to find the cash.
So instead, the Hawks decided to let Niemi and his $2.75 million go, and picked up Marty Turco for a one year one million dollar contract. Turco is a veteran goalie, but has been on the decline the past few years. Last year he had a a .913 save percentage in 53 games.
Turco might have to take the bulk of the netminding load next season, as Fanhouse reports that the Blackhawks are on the verge of ditching Cristobal Huet, too.
The Hawks are the reining champions of the NHL, and they are going to try to defend their title without many of their key players. Niemi joins Andrew Ladd, Dustin Byfuglien, Kris Versteeg, Brent Sopel, John Madden and Ben Eager, as Stanley Cup winning Blackhawks players who lost their jobs during the off-season.