Ilya Bryzgalov seems to have found a good spot for himself in Minnesota. He's been strong with the Wild, yet to lose a game in regulation with a 5-0-3 mark and a .920 save percentage. The trade from Edmonton has worked out well for everybody involved.
Still, that doesn't mean Bryzgalov will be back in Minnesota next season after free agency hits this summer. In fact, he might not be back at all, we could be seeing the final games of Bryzgalov's NHL career.
That's at least an option right now for the 33-year-old.
Asked Bryzgalov about upcoming free agency. "It doesn't mean anything because I'm not sure I want to play next year. Maybe yes, maybe no."— Chad Graff (@ChadGraff) April 6, 2014
While it would leave a humongous big hole in the goalie personality department in the NHL, would it be that much of a surprise? Even with his success in Minnesota, it's been a tough couple of seasons, mostly in Philadelphia. Not to mention he's set for a long time with the buyout money from the Flyers.
Another issue is where Bryz might fit in Minnesota. If Josh Harding returns to health, they'd have him, Darcy Kuemper as well as Niklas Backstrom. Kuemper appears to be the future and Harding was excellent this season when available.
And there's the fact that Bryzgalov is Bryzgalov; that is to say he's his a bit unusual and definitely unique.