40-Year-Old Goalie – Free Agent
Ty Conklin Contract Information:
Signed a one-year, $750,000 contract with Detroit in July of 2011.
Conklin will become an unrestricted free agent this weekend.
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RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Ty Conklin.
Conklin didn't appear to be the Wings' first choice in free agency, but he quickly became the answer when Tomas Vokoun landed in Washington. The 35-year-old will serve as the primary backup to Jimmy Howard in his second tour of duty with Detroit. During Conklin's time in St. Louis, he failed to match the level of success he had with the Wings in 2008-09 when he posted a .909 save percentage and 2.51 GAA while sharing time in goal with Chris Osgood. Barring an early-season meltdown, Conklin should fend off Joey MacDonald and see approximately 20 starts as the No. 2 netminder in Detroit this season.
Conklin continued his career as one of the NHL's best backup goalies in 2000-10, posting four shutouts in 26 starts (10 SO in 76 games over last two seasons) while saving more than 92 percent of shots faced. In signing a two-year contract in '09 with St. Louis, which at the time had journeyman Chris Mason in the final year of a contract, Conklin was thinking he put himself in a position to gain a No. 1 spot for an NHL team. But with Mason gone, the organization acquired Jaroslav Halak from Montreal, and Conklin will reprise the role of dutiful backup.
Conklin signed a two-year deal in the offseason after winning 25 games (37 starts, six shutouts) in Detroit. He's a nice fit for the Blues, bringing a lot of experience as a backup, who can challenge Chris Mason as the No. 1.
Conklin is a bit of a sleeper entering his first season with Detroit, given that Chris Osgood hasn't been counted on to handle a starter's workload during the regular season since returning to Detroit before the 2005-06 campaign. When called upon during Marc-Andre Fluery's absence in Pittsburgh last season, Conklin was very good for the Pens en route to an 18-8-5 record over 30 starts. He'll be one of the more valuable backup goaltenders out there given the potentially high number of starts (30-plus) and the caliber of the club skating in front of him. Conklin is a must-own handcuff for those who draft Osgood this season.
Because Conklin has a two-way contract, the backup netminder might find himself toiling in Wilkes-Barre while Dany Sabourin starts the season as Pittsburgh's No. 2 goalie. The Penguins will be Conklin's third organization in the last year after stints with Columbus and Buffalo. He'll need to recapture some of the magic he displayed with Edmonton in 2003-04, when he went 17-14-4 with a 2.42 GAA and .912 save percentage, if he is to have any value with the Penguins.
Depth goalie will battle for the Blue Jackets' backup job in camp.
Conklin will vie for time with Jussi Markkanen, as the two are basically 1 and 1A on the team. He has the mental game down pat for the NHL, but needs to continually work on his netminding skills.