37-Year-Old Goalie – Free Agent
Jean-Sebastien Giguere Contract Information:
Became an unrestricted free agent in July 2014.
Giguere will announce his retirement from the NHL next week, Elliot Teaford of the Daily Breeze reports.
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Jean-Sebastien Giguere: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Originally signed to provide a veteran backup presence for Semyon Varlamov last season, Giguere wound up seeing much more ice time than expected. When Varlamov faltered early, Giguere was the No. 1 guy for several stretches and played in 32 games (30 starts). Unfortunately, Jiggy didn’t play from May 15 to June 7, as the club rode Varlamov down the stretch, but he still finished with his best goals-against-average (2.28) and save percentage (.918) since his 2007-08 season in Anaheim. Barring any injuries to Varlamov – or another meltdown by the Russian netminder – Giguere is expected to return to his backup role for the upcoming season. However, he’s a good insurance policy for anyone who winds up with Varlamov in this year’s draft.
Giguere, who signed a two-year contract with the Avs in July, has been plagued by groin issues the past couple of seasons, so there's some risk here for the Avs and fantasy owners alike. Coming into training camp, Varlamov is widely viewed as having the inside track on the starting job in Colorado, however Giggy is not that far removed from being one of the league's elite netminders, either. If Varlamov falters, the Avs likely won't hesitate to give Giguere a shot at earning himself the top job.
Giguere has something to prove but unfortunately, it'll be hard for him to do that as the back-up in Toronto. The presence of his mentor and coach Francois Allaire will help. And so will another inevitable injury to Jonas Gustavsson. But barring a complete Monster meltdown, Giggy will start fewer than 35 games. He's best drafted as a handcuff for the Monster or as a spot starter in daily leagues. Just don't overrate him. He's a Leaf, after all.
Giguere was terrible in 2008-09 finishing with only 19 wins, a GAA above three, and a save percentage right at 90, that is not going to get it done in today’s NHL. This led to Jonas Hiller taking over the starting job and the rumors that Giguere could be dealt during training camp. He may be the goalie whose name you remember, but he’s also the goalie you don’t want on your fantasy team.
Giguere is returning from his the best regular season campaign of his career, as he set personal bests in save percentage (.922) and goals-against average (2.11) while compiling a 35-17-6 record over 57 starts. No longer looking over his shoulder at Ilya Bryzgalov - who was let go and eventually acquired by Phoenix through waivers - Giguere still has a capable backup in Swiss backstop Jonas Hiller. Given Hiller's ability and Giguere's perennial issues with minor injuries, look for him to start 55-60 games again this season. While he's never shouldered the same workload as Martin Brodeur or even Roberto Luongo, Giguere has a strong corps of blueliners in front of him and he remains a legitimate candidate for the Vezina if he's able to stay healthy this time around.
Giguere is coming off a monster year which will vault him towards the top of all netminder cheat sheets. You might want to hold off on committing to him that early, since he is coming off of sports hernia surgery and his capable backup Ilja Bryzgalov will be relishing the opportunity for playing time while Giguere recovers. Essentially, the Ducks are in good enough shape without Giguere that they have no need to rush him back, which means they'll likely take a very cautious approach with his recovery.
Giguere had a great year last season, going 30-15-11 with a 2.66 goals-against-average, but surprisingly was yanked at times during the postseason. Giguere will likely split time with Ilya Bryzgalov during the season, so drafting Giguere as your No. 1 goalie will be risky.
Pinpointed as one of the biggest culprits of using huge goalie equipment, it'll be interesting to see if Giguere can rise to the challenge and bring his game back to the level of a few years ago. Needless to say, 2003-04 was a nightmare (17-31-6, 2.62 GAA). With young Ilja Bryzgalov waiting in the wings (possibly), this season is critical for Giguere. When you look at Giguere's career, 2002-03 is the only season you could consider great. And most people remember Giggy's amazing playoff run that season. But with a 90-109-25 career mark, it's time Giguere proves to everyone that 2003-04 wasn't the norm but rather an exception. But the smaller equipment could do a mental number on him from the onset.