Colorado Avalanche to Sign Goalie Jonathan Bernier

ANAHEIM, CA - MAY 20: Goaltender Jonathan Bernier
ANAHEIM, CA - MAY 20: Goaltender Jonathan Bernier /

The Colorado Avalanche appear to be replenishing their goal tending depth with 28-year-old free agent Jonathan Bernier, an unrestricted free agent.

It should be no surprise that the Colorado Avalanche are choosing to sign a goalie in free agency. After losing Calvin Pickard in the Expansion Draft, they only have two under contract — starter Semyon Varlamov and AHL staple Spencer Martin. It’s possible Martin could make the jump to the NHL, but that’s still not enough goal tending depth.

Enter Jonathan Bernier. According to Avs insider Adrian Dater, the Colorado Avalanche are going to sign unrestricted free agent Jonathan Bernier. At the time of writing, there were no terms available as free agency frenzy doesn’t start until 10 am MT.

About Jonathan Bernier

Age: 28
Height: 6’0″
Weight:184 lbs.
Catches: Left
Previous Contract: 2 years, AAV $4/1 million
Previous Team: Anaheim Ducks (also Toronto Maple Leafs, Los Angeles Kings)

Goalie Jonathan Bernier has nine years of experience. For a couple of seasons in Toronto — 2013 to 2015 — he was the starting goalie. For the most part, he’s a solid backup.

Bernier is known for having “cat-like” reflexes. He’s not tall in the new style of goalies. However, he tends to display sound positioning. On the downside, he can get into slumps and start fighting the puck.

Career-wise, Jonathan Bernier has played 252 games. His record is 109-95-27 with a career goals against average of 2.65 and save percentage of .915. For comparison, Varlamov has a 169-134-35 record with a 2.65 GAA and .916 save percentage — so pretty much the same.

Bernier and the Colorado Avalanche

More from Mile High Sticking

Goalie Jonathan Bernier spent time in Toronto. That means he was under the microscope, and he caught a lot of flak. Unfortunately, his most recent game was the playoff elimination game against the Nashville Predators when he allowed four goals in 16 shots.

That said, he’s known for being a good backup goalie who can even challenge for the starting spot. He’s inconsistent — which is right up the Avalanche’s alley — and smallish — Colorado hates size these days. He’s also a little older than I was considering ideal in my previous post — I said no one older than 27 should be in burgundy and blue for the first time next season.

That said, I like the Bernier signing (provided it happens, which seems likely). I feel comfortable knowing an NHL-worthy goalie can take over the second Varlamov’s groin gives up the ghost yet again.

Plus, the man has mad tattoo game.

Next: Duchene Trade Situation is Overblown

As of now, there’s no news on who the Avs may be signing. Unfortunately, it sounds like defenseman Michael Del Zotto is going to the Vancouver Canucks, as is forward Sam Gagner. Either would have been a good addition for the Colorado Avalanche.

I still the the Avalanche need a decent defenseman and an NHL depth forward. However, I suspect GM Joe Sakic will do what he did last season — sign eight AHLers in one swoop and little else.