Does Cujo Still Have Bite?: The Market for Curtis Joseph

Jason HackettAnalyst IJanuary 12, 2008

Curtis Joseph hasn't played a NHL game in almost a year, yet he is the hottest commodity available at the moment. As the push for the playoffs is starting to heat up, Curtis made it known that he is looking for work. Tendering potential offers, and lowering them down to just two: San Jose and Calgary.

Both teams are in need of a veteran back-up as neither team's back-up has any noteworthy NHL experience. Going deep into the playoffs is demanding on any goaltender and with both team's divisions as tight as they have been in years, one injury to your starter could dump your playoff chances.

Curtis Joseph has been known for his stints in Edmonton, Toronto and in Detroit, but most recently he was starting goaltender for Phoenix for a couple of years. As well as starting goalie for team Canada in Spengler Cup, where they won just a couple weeks ago.

The 18 year veteran of Keswick, Ont would bring much experience to either team with 913 regular season games and 131 playoff games under his belt. Experience, leadership and a desire to win at any cost is what Joseph brings to either club. A viable back-up who can be used sparing down the stretch to give your starter a rest and still be able to win you the game.

My best guess would be a signing in San Jose. With all the rumblings of turmoil between Flames coach Mike Keenan and Miika Kipprusoff, plus the bad blood between Joseph and Keenan back in their days in St. Louis probably be a big factor. Both teams are probably playoff bound with strong teams and could use him a couple of games down the stretch, but don't expect much playing time unless Kipprusoff or Nabokov go down with injury.

Another thought would be if either team would offer him a job after the season is through. There is no doubt that Cujo will never be a number one goaltender any more at his age, but his experiences in the league, going through being not drafting to leading Toronto to one game from the Stanley Cup finals could be useful. If either team offers him a scouting position or something along those lines would most likely make him sign with that team.