The Buffalo Sabres have resigned backup goaltender Patrick Lalime to a 1-year contract worth $600,000 plus bonuses. Lalime (6’3”, 189 lbs.) was 4-8-2 for the Sabres last season with a 2.81 GAA and .905 save percentage. The year before that he went 5-13-3 with a 3.10 GAA and a .900 save percentage.
This surprises many fans due to his poor winning percentage and occasional sub-par play. However Ryan Miller (you know that one guy they built the team around) loves Patrick Lalime.He also posted decent numbers this past season and has played respectably at times the last two years with poor play in front of him.
Many Sabres fans had their hearts set on the return of Martin Biron. While Biron was a fan favorite he was not the right fit for Buffalo. Lalime is a character guy in the room who has posted better numbers last season. Biron who went 9-14 with a 3.27 GAA and a .896 save percent signed in NY with the Rangers for $900,000. The Sabres made the right move in signing Lalime especially with the development of Jhonas Enroth.
The prospect played well the past two seasons in Portland and did well in his one game in Buffalo last year. It was expeted that he would compete for the backup spot this year in camp. The idea of bonuses in Lalime’s contract leads me to believe he will in fact be competing with Enroth for the backup role. It wouldn’t be hard for the Sabres to eat a $600,000 contract in the AHL. This move suits everyone: Lalime, Miller, Enroth, Biron and Regier. Now let the fan bashing begin!