On a very busy Friday General Manager Steve Yzerman and crew have traded Goaltender Sebastien Caron and two 2012 second round draft picks (the ones acquired from Philadelphia and Minnesota) in exchange for the aforementioned Lindback, Forward Kyle Wilson and a 2012 seventh round draft pick.
Lindback, who is as much of a mountain in front of the net as Pekka Rinne, has played in 38 NHL games for the Nashville Predators recording a .914 SV% and a 2.53 GAA. He has also appeared in the playoffs for 13 minutes in 2010-11 where he stopped all 9 shots he faced. Lindback is a solid netminder to begin with and with further coaching, I feel he has the potential to become one of the top Number 1s in the league. The only lingering doubt I have is how he adjusts to the new blueline in front of him, as he will no longer be playing behind the Dynamic Defensive Duo of Shea Weber and Ryan Suter. Look for Lindback to be the Bolts starter and named #1 come opening night.
Wilson, a Centerman, was most likely brought in to bring added depth to the Lightning checking lines. Drafted in the 9th round of the 2004 NHL Draft by the Minnesota Wild, he has spent most of his professional time in the American League but has logged 39 NHL games with the Capitals, Blue Jackets, Predators. In those 39 games he 4 goals, 9 assists and a +/- of -3.
The only question that remains regading Lindback is whether or not he finally is the answer to Tampa Bay’s need for a solid franchise netminder.
- Jim Courteau
Follow me on Twitter @BlackSheepJim