Is Carey Price’s groin problem worse than any of thought?
You could be forgiven for reaching that conclusion after Marc Bergevin acquired goaltender Devan Dubnyk from the Nashville Predators for future considerations prior to the NHL trade deadline. He was immediately assigned to the Hamilton Bulldogs. Dubnyk will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season.
Currently Price is on the injured reserve list and Wednesday night Peter Budaj will make his fifth consecutive start with Hamilton Bulldogs callup Dustin Tokarski as his backup.
Unlike Tokarski, the 6’6″ Dubnyk has considerable NHL experience. If the Price injury is more serious than current reports, Dubnyk becomes the Canadiens insurance policy.
This is Dubnyk’s second trade in two months. On January 15th, the Edmonton Oilers traded him to the Predators in a sequence that saw him go Nashville in return for veteran forward Matt Hendricks. And hour later the Oilers got Ben Scrivens from Los Angeles for a thrid round draft pick.
Dubnyk had become a kind of whipping boy in Edmonton playing behind that horrible Oiler defence and was traded after 32 appearances this season. At the time he had a 3.36 goals against average and an .894 save percentage. The previous season his save percentage was .920. Nashville felt they needed goaltending insurance with their number one Pekka Rinne recovering from hip surgery. As it turned out, he played in only two games for them.
That’s four deals for the Canadiens in the time leading up to the trade deadline. They also picked up forward Dale Weise from Vancouver for Raphael Diaz back in February, defenceman Mike Weaver from Florida on Monday for a 2015 fifth rounder and, on the minor league level, LW Steve Quailer was sent to the Los Angeles Kings organization for centre Robert Czarnik.