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Red Wings lose Joey MacDonald to Calgary

Updated 4x at 1:51 PM: I'm a bit stunned. According to MLive's Ansar Khan, Joey MacDonald did not clear waivers: the Calgary Flames claimed him as they've got goaltending issues with Miikka Kiprusoff battling a knee issue:

The Calgary Flames have claimed goaltender Joey MacDonald off waivers today.

MacDonald, 33, was cleared to play today after being out since March 14 due to a bulging disc.

The Flames needed a goalie after started Mikka Kiprusoff injured his groin last Tuesday in a game against the Red Wings.

The Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness confirms...

As does the Free Press's Helene St. James:

Update: TSN's Bob McKenzie explains why the Flames snagged MacDonald:

The Free Press's St. James is confirming in article form...

Goaltender Joey MacDonald has been claimed off waivers by the Calgary Flames.

The Detroit Red Wings put MacDonald on waivers Sunday, after he was cleared from a bulging disc in his back that had sidelined him since last March. MacDonald, 33, didn't fit into the Wings' plans this season after they signed Jonas Gustavsson in the off-season. While Gustavsson is sidelined by a sore groin, Petr Mrazek has emerged as a viable backup option.

MacDonald's NHL record is 31-48-13, with a 3.04 goals-against average and .903 save percentage.

And Khan bulked up his article:

MacDonald, who turned 33 last Thursday, went 8-5-1, with a 2.16 goals-against average and .912 save percentage for the Red Wings in 2011-12. He stepped in when Jimmy Howard was injured and won seven games in a row at one point, winning the back-up job from Ty Conklin.

Detroit signed Jonas Gustavsson on July 1 to be Howard's backup. Gustavsson has been out since Jan. 22 with a groin pull. He has been skating on his own the past several days but isn't sure when he'll return. Until then, rookie Petr Mrazek will continue to back-up Howard.

MacDonald is in the final year of his contract, a one-way deal for $550,000. He asked to be traded over the summer, not wanting to spend another season in the AHL, but the club was not able to accommodate his request.

MacDonald is 31-48-13, with a 3.04 goals-against average and .903 save percentage in parts of six seasons with Detroit, Boston, Toronto and the New York Islanders.

Here's the Flames' release regarding MacDonald:


For Immediate Release Monday, February 11, 2013

Calgary, AB -- The Calgary Flames announced today that they have acquired goaltender Joey MacDonald off of waivers from the Detroit Red Wings.

MacDonald, a native of Pictou, Nova Scotia, has 101 career NHL games with Boston, Detroit, New York Islanders and Toronto. He has a career record of 31-48-0-13 along with a .903% save percentage and 3.04 GAA. Last season with the Red Wings he was 8-5-1 in 14 games and had a 2.16 GAA and a .912% save percentage.

The Calgary Flames have also placed forward Michael Cammalleri (retro active to Feb.5) on injured reserve.

Update #2: Here's more about MacDonald's future from McKenzie...

Update #3: As DetroitRedWings.com's BIll Roose notes, there's some irony to the fact that MacDonald was claimed off waivers:

The Boston Bruins claimed MacDonald when the Wings waived the netminder in Feb. 2007. He signed a two-year contract with Detroit prior to the 2010-11 season and was a solid backup option when starter Jimmy Howard was injured or needed a rest. MacDonald also played for the New York Islanders (2007-09) and Toronto (2009-10).

MacDonald always played well in Detroit. Last year, he won seven straight games and finished with an 8-5-1 record and a 2.16 goals-against average. But his back pain flared up last March during a game in Anaheim and he hasn’t played since. He was diagnosed with a degenerative disc, however, surgery wasn’t necessary.

But with the off-season signing of Swedish netminder Jonas Gustavsson and the emergence of prospect Petr Mrazek, the writing was on the wall for MacDonald who now heads to his fifth different team in seven years.

The Red Wings originally signed MacDonald as an undrafted free agent in Dec. 2001, and spent the next five seasons in the Wings’ farm system between Toledo and Grand Rapids.

In 101 NHL games, MacDonald is 31-48-13 with a 3.04 GAA and a .903 save percentage.

The Flames likely felt that MacDonald could be an insurance policy for starter Miikka Kiprusoff, who suffered a knee injury in the first period of last week’s loss to the Wings in Detroit.

Kiprusoff’s injury isn’t thought to be serious, but the Flames still put their veteran goalie on injured reserve. He’s eligible to return for Wednesday’s game against the Dallas Stars. The Flames also have 24-year-old goalie Leland Irving in the mix, but MacDonald will provide depth.

Update #4: As the Grand Rapids Press's Peter J. Wallner notes, the Grand Rapids Griffins may miss MacDonald's presence the most:

MacDonald is the Griffins’ all-time leader in wins with 109, shutouts with 20, and has a career 2.44 GAA. He played in Grand Rapids 2002-03-to 2006-07 and again in 2010-11 and 211-2012.

Petr Mrazek, who has been the Griffins starter most of the season, is currently in Detroit as backup to Jimmy Howard as the Red Wings wait for Jonas Gustavsson to heal from a groin injury.

In Mrazek’s absence in Grand Rapids, Tom McCollum has taken over as starter. After a shutout Wednesday, Feb. 6, against Houston, the fourth-year veteran lost twice over the weekend to Oklahoma City and struggled. He allowed three unanswered goals Friday in a 4-3 loss and yielded six goals and was pulled in the third period in Saturday’s 7-4 loss.

Jordan Pearce, who started the season in Grand Rapids but was sent to Toledo when Mrazek was recalled, is the backup.

The Griffins have home games Friday against Lake Erie and Sunday against Charlotte.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink


DrewBehr's avatar

He had asked for a trade, so ultimately he got what he wanted. Goaltending has been solid in GR and I’d rather see him elsewhere than take starts away from McCollum and Mrazek. Plus how good can an aging goaltender coming off a lengthy back injury really be?

Posted by DrewBehr from The Mitten on 02/11/13 at 01:19 PM ET

detroitredwings's avatar

I’d like to see someone asking for a trade to RW, not out of, for a change:)

Posted by detroitredwings on 02/11/13 at 01:29 PM ET

Sneetch's avatar

Too bad it’s not Cleary heading out of the D instead of Joey Mac.

Saturday and Sunday’s games were great hockey…..but there was one sore thumb sticking out and that was #11.

Good luck to Mac. Say ‘hello’ to the Smurf.

Posted by Sneetch on 02/11/13 at 01:51 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Good luck to J.Mac.  Enjoyed saying, “JMac.  Tracking that shit.” on the LBs.

Posted by SYF from Twerkin' with Anastasia Ashley on 02/11/13 at 01:59 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

He was a competent reliever. He’s not Mrazek. The wings have a pretty good shot at a solid 1-2 punch in goal with Howard and Mrazek.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 02/11/13 at 02:09 PM ET

LivinLaVidaLockout's avatar

Very happy he’ll have the opportunity to play in the NHL somewhere this year.  He filled in admirably when we needed him, and with Mrazek and Gustavsson in the system now he didn’t have much time left with the club.

Posted by LivinLaVidaLockout on 02/11/13 at 02:47 PM ET

Crater's avatar

Hope he gets some games behind Kipper. Joey deserves a fair shake, if he doesn’t stick now I imagine he won’t get another chance here in the NHL. He will likely need to head over to Europe to give it a go for a pay day before retirement.

Posted by Crater from SoCal on 02/11/13 at 03:28 PM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

Joey deserves a fair shake

Indeed.  I agree with everyone who said nice things about him.  He was a big help to the Wings when they needed him to be, even though he’s no Mrazek.  I wish him well.

Posted by MsRedWinger from the State where Tigers roam in the Spring on 02/11/13 at 03:31 PM ET

w2j2's avatar

Good luck to Joey MacDonald.
He was a warrior for the Wings, a great teammate.

Posted by w2j2 on 02/11/13 at 06:11 PM ET

Hippy Dave's avatar

Yep best of luck to him.  He’s got a real shot up there in Calgary.

Posted by Hippy Dave from Portland by way of Detroit on 02/11/13 at 07:45 PM ET

perfection's avatar

Agree with all of you. JoeyMac was great… not berries or anything, but pretty fruity none the less!

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 02/11/13 at 07:58 PM ET

cigar_nurse's avatar

It was cool the way the team rallied around J Mac when Howie was out and kept the home winning streak intact. Best of luck for him in Cal-Gary. I hope he doesn’t expect much work with Kipper snacks there.

Posted by cigar_nurse from On The mend for next season Greenville Pylons on 02/11/13 at 09:54 PM ET

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