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Wow: Red Wings sign Joey MacDonald to a 2-year contract

Updated 5x at 12:11 PM: St. James confirms that it’s a 2-way deal for $550,000 in the NHL and $105,000 in the AHL and I quote from Jim Nill, who walked by at 11:30 AM: “Just a little insurance policy.”

Per the Detroit Red Wings’ Twitter account:

The Red Wings have agreed to terms with goaltender Joey MacDonald on a two-year deal.
...
MacDonald appeared in 15 games in 2010-11, posting a 5-5-3 record with a career-best 2.58 GAA and a .917 SV%.

I’m guessing that the Wings have signed him to be their #2B goaltender and help Thomas McCollum and Jordan Pearce in Grand Rapids, but we’ll see…wouldn’t you know it, I just saw Jim Nill prior to reading these “Tweets”...

Update: Here’s the Wings’ press release…

 

RED WINGS AND GOALTENDER JOEY MACDONALD

AGREE TO TERMS ON TWO-YEAR DEAL

...Veteran Netminder Has Played in 87 Career NHL Games…

Detroit, MI… Detroit Red Wings Executive Vice President and General Manager Ken Holland announced today the club has agreed to terms with goaltender Joey MacDonald on a two-year contract.  In accordance with team policy, additional terms of the deal were not disclosed.

MacDonald, 31, appeared in 15 games for Detroit last season, posting a 5-5-3 record with a career-best 2.58 GAA and a .917 SV%. He notched his second career shutout with a sparkling 37-save performance in a 2-0 win at Columbus on March 17. A backup to both Jimmy Howard and Chris Osgood in 2010-11, MacDonald made 74 saves on 76 shots (.974 SV%) in six relief appearances for the Red Wings.  He also played in 20 games for the Grand Rapids Griffins (AHL) last season, finishing with a 10-9-1 record, 2.78 GAA and .894 SV%.

MacDonald was originally signed as a free agent by Detroit on December 21, 2001.  The Pictou, Nova Scotia, native has appeared in 87 career NHL games with the Red Wings (23), Boston Bruins (7), New York Islanders (51) and Toronto Maple Leafs (6).  He holds several Grand Rapids team records including most career wins (98), most career shutouts (17) and best SV% in a single season (.936 in 2003-04).  MacDonald and fellow Griffin netminder, Marc Lamothe, won the Harry “Hap” Holmes Memorial Trophy in 2002-03 allowing the fewest goals against in the AHL that season.

Joey MacDonald, Goalie

Born Feb 7 1980 —Pictou, NS

Height 6.00—Weight 197—Catches L

Season   Team                 Lge   GP   Min   GA EN SO   GAA   W   L   OT   Svs   Pct

———————————————————————————————————————————————-

2001-02 Toledo Storm           ECHL   38 2084 100   3 1 2.88 12 15   7 1184 0.922

2002-03 Grand Rapids Griffins     AHL   25 1337   49   2 3 2.20 14   6   0   537 0.916

2003-04 Grand Rapids Griffins     AHL   39 2249   74   0 6 1.97 22 12   3 1087 0.936

2004-05 Grand Rapids Griffins     AHL   66 3754 143   0 5 2.29 34 29   2 1785 0.926

2005-06 Grand Rapids Griffins     AHL   32 1745   91   5 2 3.13 17   9   2   789 0.897

2005-06 Toledo Storm           ECHL   1   60   1   0 0 1.00   1   0   0   25 0.962

2006-07 Boston Bruins           NHL   7   358   16   1 0 2.68   2   2   1   179 0.918

2006-07 Detroit Red Wings       NHL   8   468   27   1 0 3.46   1   5   1   184 0.872

2006-07 Grand Rapids Griffins     AHL   2   123   6   1 0 2.93   1   1   0   53 0.898

2007-08 New York Islanders       NHL   2   120   6   0 0 2.99   0   1   1   67 0.918

2007-08 Bridgeport Sound Tigers   AHL   38 2266 109   8 2 2.89 16 19   2 1091 0.909

2008-09 New York Islanders       NHL   49 2792 157   7 1 3.37 14 26   6 1427 0.901

2009-10 Toronto Marlies         AHL   36 2112 112   5 2 3.18 14 19   3   930 0.893

2009-10 Toronto Maple Leafs       NHL   6   319   17   1 0 3.20   1   4   0   140 0.892

2010-11 Grand Rapids Griffins     AHL   20 1164   54   3 1 2.78 10   9   1   457 0.894

2010-11 Detroit Red Wings       NHL   15   721   31   1 1 2.58   5   5   3   341 0.917

———————————————————————————————————————————

          NHL TOTALS         87 4779   254 11 2 3.19   23 43   2 2592 0.902

Update #2: Quoth the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan:

Joey MacDonald returns to the Wings. Signs a 2-year contract. He’ll likely be the No. 3 goalie in the system.

Update #3: MLive’s Ansar Khan conffirms...

The Detroit Red Wings have signed goaltender Joey MacDonald to a two-year contract.

MacDonald, 31, went 5-5-3 with a 2.58 goals-against average and .917 save percentage for the Red Wings last season, after being recalled from the Grand Rapids Griffins to fill in for the injured Chris Osgood.

MacDonald had been seeking a one-way contract (NHL-only salary) and was said to have an offer from a Russian team as a contingency plan.

More details shortly.

As does the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan:

Joey MacDonald was thinking of going over to Russia but has decided against it. The Red Wings re-signed MacDonald to a 2-year contract. He’ll likely be the No. 3 goalie, starting the season in Grand Rapids.

MacDonald had that role last season before moving up to the Wings when Chris Osgood had season-ending groin surgery.

MacDonald played 15 games with the Wings last season. He had a 5-5-3 record with a 2.58 goals-against average and 91.7 save percentage.

This signing strengthens the Wings’ depth but doesn’t answer the question of who’ll back up Jimmy Howard. General manager Ken Holland is expected to meet with Chris Osgood, maybe as early as today. Holland is debating whether to bring back Osgood, 38, for another season

My brief take? He’s coming back for his family’s sake—stability is a good thing—and he’s coming back because he liked his role. I don’t think he’s going to be the Wings’ primary back-up.

Update 2.5: per the CBC:

The Detroit Red Wings announced through their Twitter feed Monday the re-signing of veteran goaltender Joey MacDonald. The 31-year-old Halifax native was inked to a two-year deal, the club said.

MacDonald has spent the bulk of his professional career in the minors, but has been called upon when needed by four different NHL clubs in the past five seasons. He appeared in 15 games for Detroit over the past season, going 5-5-3 with a 2.58 goals-against average and .917 save percentage.

It is MacDonald’s second stint with the Red Wings. He’s also suited up for Boston, the New York Islanders and Toronto, recording two shutouts in 87 NHL games with a 3.19 average and .902 save percentage.

The Red Wings are set with Jimmy Howard as their No. 1 netminder but have still not officially declared whether they will bring back 38-year-old netminder Chris Osgood.

Update #3: Via the Macomb Daily’s Chuck Pleiness:

The Wings have signed goalie Joey MacDonald to a two-year contract. Details of the contract aren’t known yet.

Wings general manager Ken Holland is also planning to meet with Chris Osgood, 38, to see if he wants to return for another season or plans on retiring.

Former Wing Ty Conklin, 35, is still unsigned and remains a distinct option to backup starter Jimmy Howard.

MacDonald, 31, had sought to sign a one-way contract in the NHL this offseason. He also reportedly had an offer to play in Russia.

MacDonald performed well last season for the Wings when he was recalled from Grand Rapids after Osgood was injured. He played in 15 games and went 5-5-3. He had a 2.58 goals-against average and save percentage of .917.

And here’s a bit more from Kulfan...

General manager Ken Holland said he will talk with Chris Osgood after Osgood returns from Europe. Osgood was expected to arrive from a golfing trip Sunday.

Holland and the Wings’ coaching staff is debating whether to bring back Osgood, 38, for another season or sign a free agent (Ty Conklin has been mentioned as a possibility).

Yahoo Sports’ Greg “Puck Daddy” Wyshynski weighs in, as does Pro Hockey Talk’s Joe Yerdon, who engages in the Osgood versus Conklin versus Turco versus Emery exercise.

Update #4: Here’s the Free Press’s Helene St. James’ take, with a quote from Ken Holland—and she’s on the Osgood bandwagon:

MacDonald’s cap hit is $550,000, but he’s on a two-way deal for ’11-12, meaning he’ll only make $105,000 in the minors.

“He’s going to be our third guy,” general manager Ken Holland said. “He had some options in Europe but he wanted to stay in North America. He did a nice job for us when called up. He understands that he’ll open the season at the American league level. He’s a good veteran.”

MacDonald, 31, appeared in 15 games for Detroit last season, going 5-5-3 with a 2.58 goals-against average and .917 save percentage. The Wings relied on him to fill in the no. 2 spot behind Jimmy Howard after Osgood was sidelined by surgery in January. MacDonald went 10-9-1 with a 2.78 GAA and .894 save percentage while with the Griffins in ’10-11.

The Wings tried to add a new no. 2 guy when the free agent market opened July 1, but prospective candidates ended up signing elsewhere. At this point there are very few possibilities remaining, which has turned the focus back on Osgood.

Osgood, 38, would have been a slam-dunk re-signing were it not for his second half, which saw him repeatedly bail on comeback attempts following surgery on a sports hernia and his groin. He hasn’t played since January, and the Wings remain concerned about his health.

Holland plans to have a long talk with Osgood, who is due back from a golf trip Tuesday, this week. If Osgood is convincingly optimistic about being able to play again, expect the Wings to sign him to a one-year deal.

Other than health issues, Osgood is the ideal back-up: He has a great relationship with Howard, he’s given the organization years of service, he’s topped 400 NHL victories, and he’s been in goal for two Stanley Cups.

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Comments

RedMenace's avatar

Let the mass suicides commence… hahaha.

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 07/11/11 at 12:58 PM ET

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This could be a 2-way deal for veteran leadership in GR. We may yet sign Ozzie or Conks. I would expect this to be answered in the next 24 hrs.

Posted by DRWLaw from Detroit, MI on 07/11/11 at 01:02 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Last I’d read, JoeyMac didn’t want a 2-way contract…

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 07/11/11 at 01:05 PM ET

Nate A's avatar

If he plays like he did last season with the big club, I’m all for it. Happy to have been proven wrong on that one.

Posted by Nate A from Detroit-ish on 07/11/11 at 01:09 PM ET

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Redmenace:

Yep..that pretty sums up what I was thinking when I read the title..but if this is for GR, then I believe it is a good signing to help out Thomas McCollum and Jordan Pearce…but please…not as a backup to Howard!!!!

Posted by Meg on 07/11/11 at 01:11 PM ET

red_wings_49's avatar

What in the….  *vomits*

Posted by red_wings_49 from Mad Heights, MI on 07/11/11 at 01:13 PM ET

RedMenace's avatar

Look, he played really well last season (despite the 5-5-3 record), so give the guy a chance.  It’s not like he has to carry the team…

Posted by RedMenace from the Church of Jesus Lashoff on 07/11/11 at 01:16 PM ET

Avatar

Last I’d read, JoeyMac didn’t want a 2-way contract…

I’d guess he’s signed for GR but probaby a one-way deal so that he gets decent money whether the’s in Detroit or GR.

Posted by Garth on 07/11/11 at 01:17 PM ET

Avatar

It’s not like he has to carry the team…

Unless something happens to Jimmy… (currently knocking wood)

I’m fine with him being the #3 guy who I sure as shit hope this isn’t Jimmy’s back up.

Posted by Garth on 07/11/11 at 01:19 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Read the top of the post, folks. Jim Nill says MacDonald’s an “insurance policy.”

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 07/11/11 at 01:34 PM ET

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Leads me to think we may be going with Ozzy and his wonky groin.

Posted by Colquohoun on 07/11/11 at 01:39 PM ET

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Leads me to think we may be going with Ozzy and his wonky groin.

Can’t imagine Holland would let that happen.

Posted by Garth on 07/11/11 at 01:45 PM ET

AndrewFromAnnArbor's avatar

No better offers out there and he didn’t want to up sticks to Russia, so I’m not surprised that he’s back, but with our cap space, there’s no excuse to not get a legit backup for Howard.  Ty Conklin, I’m looking in your direction…

Good that there’s veteran guidance for the young goalies in the pipeline, but the question is, who’s taken the guidance?  If it’s Pearce, then Joey Mac is a good teacher.  If it’s McCollum, well…

Posted by AndrewFromAnnArbor from Fortress Europe on 07/11/11 at 01:48 PM ET

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I didn’t think Joey did a bad job last year. Out appears there are done people who remember him playing well in losses and others who only remember the losses.
Goalies don’t score a whole lot of goals. They ned some help from the players in front of them. Joey didn’t get much help last year.

Posted by teldar on 07/11/11 at 02:11 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Check the updates…

2 years, 2-way, $550K NHL, $105K AHL.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 07/11/11 at 02:14 PM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

I’m happy Joey decided to stay.  He’s the perfect #3 and if he is comfortable with his role, why not?

And I know Helene is plugged in, but I still expect that Ozzie will not be re-signed.  I’m guessing a deal has been reached with Conklin but he was asked to keep it quiet until Holland can talk to Ozzie.  I love Ozzie - I really do - but he is just too big a question mark, unless Holland believes JoeyMac can be our #2 if needed.

Posted by MsRedWinger from Flori-duh on 07/11/11 at 02:27 PM ET

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He has a great relationship with Howard, he’s given the organization years of service, he’s topped 400 NHL victories, and he’s been in goal for two Stanley Cups.

I love Ozzie, but none of these are good reasons to have him as the back up when stacked against his performance the last two years (last three regular seasons), his mangled groin and his age.  Or against the fact that there are better options out there.

And let’s be honest, as much as the Red Wings are about loyalty, they’re also about what’s best for the organization.  Ask Kirk Maltby, Chris Chelios and Kris Draper about that.

Posted by Garth on 07/11/11 at 02:34 PM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

Garth, I agree.  Wouldn’t it be salt in the wound to Draper if they re-sign Ozzie and not him?

Posted by MsRedWinger from Flori-duh on 07/11/11 at 03:12 PM ET

John's avatar

We’re going with Ozzie.  No way Holland spends the money on MacDonald if he signs Conklin. 

I, for one, welcome Ozzie back.  Its too early for him to hang them up and now that his groin is in good shape, I think he will play much better.

Posted by John from Pittsburgh, PA (Wings fan for life!) on 07/11/11 at 03:14 PM ET

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No way Holland spends the money on MacDonald if he signs Conklin.

What does having a veteran helping along the youngsters in Grand Rapids have to do with anything else?  It’s $105K, not a Brad Richards contract…

I don’t see why this is any different from what you want in place if you signed an over-35 careeer back up (Conklin) an over-35 career starter who might be willing to take a back up role (Turco), a younger guy who just came back from normally career-ending surgery (Emery) or if you traded for someone who had a breakout year a couple seasons ago and has since faltered (Leighton).

You still want a veteran who can be called up if you need him and who would otherwise be a capable chaperone for the youngsters in Grand Rapids.

Please please PLEASE Kenny, don’t bring back Ozzie.

Posted by Garth on 07/11/11 at 03:28 PM ET

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Garth, I agree.  Wouldn’t it be salt in the wound to Draper if they re-sign Ozzie and not him?

I think so.  And Draper already seems not to be happy that he’s not going to be around (what with his comments about taking a Maltby-like contrct), so this would just make it worse.

Posted by Garth on 07/11/11 at 03:31 PM ET

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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.