City Husso signed a three-year contract with the Detroit Red Wings on Friday after he was acquired in a trade with the St. Louis Blues. Financial terms were not disclosed.
St. Louis received a third-round pick (No. 73) in the 2022 Upper Deck NHL Draft.
Derek Lalonde, who was hired as the Red Wings coach on June 30, said Husso will form a goalie tandem with Alex Nedeljkovic next season.
“Very exciting,” Lalonde said at the 2022 draft from Bell Center in Montreal. “We were going to get a goalie to share the net with ‘Nedo,’ and I’m very excited about that. He was a target of other guys. They did a heck of a job. I just found that out walking over here this morning.
“So it feels like Ville is going this way with his development (angles hand upward), and I think we’re going to get him at a really good time. Those two share will the net. I think it’ll be a good experience for both of them.”
Husso was 25-7-6 with a 2.56 goals-against average, .919 save percentage and two shutouts in 40 regular-season games (38 starts) for the Blues and could have become an unrestricted free agent July 13. The 27-year -old goalie was 2-5 with a 3.67 GAA, .890 save percentage and one shutout in seven Stanley Cup Playoff games (six starts) for the Blues, who lost to the Colorado Avalanche in the Western Conference Second Round.
Nedeljkovic was 20-24-9 with a 3.31 GAA and .901 save percentage in 59 games for the Red Wings.
“We certainly like the season that Ville had coming in and solidified the tandem with Alex,” Red Wings general manager Steve Yzerman said, “I think we’ve got two guys that we can put in the net every night and give us a reasonable good luck to win.”
Lalonde said he is open-minded as to how the two will share the net.
“I’m still getting to know these guys. I’m a big fan of Nedo, just even watching him through his major junior days, the success he has, competing against him with Carolina,” Lalonde said. “[The Red Wings] went out and traded for him a year ago. I’m excited what he can be.”
Selected by St. Louis in the fourth round (No. 94) of the 2014 NHL Draft, Husso is 34-13-7 with a 2.74 GAA, .912 save percentage and three shutouts in 57 games (53 starts).
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Husso began the season as the backup to Jordan Binnington before earning more playing time in the second half of the season. Binnington was 18-14-4 with a 3.31 GAA, .901 save percentage and two shutouts in 37 games this season and 4-1 with a 1.72 GAA and .949 save percentage in six playoff games (four starts).
Detroit (32-40-10) was sixth in the Atlantic Division this season and failed to qualify for the playoffs for the sixth straight season. They allowed the second most goals per game (3.78) behind the Montreal Canadiens (3.87).
Nedeljkovic has one year remaining on his contract. Thomas Greisswho was 10-15-1 with a 3.66 GAA and .891 save percentage for Detroit this season, can become a UFA.
“We feel comfortable that this makes us a better team, and we had the cap space and the contract isn’t seven years or anything like that,” Yzerman said. “It’s a very reasonable term for us, and we think they’ll play well. There’s not a lot of goalies out there, and we felt like we better get one. You need depth at that position. I thought it was a worthwhile – – I don’t want to call it a gamble, but a worthwhile decision to make.”
The Red Wings also announced they hired Bob Boughner as an associate coach. Boughner was fired as coach of the San Jose Sharks on July 3 after going 67-85-23 in three seasons.
Lalonde said he and general manager Steve Yzerman wanted an associate coach with experience, especially to work with young Red Wings defensemen Moritz Seider21, Simon Edvinsson19, and Filip Hronek24.
Seider won the Calder Trophy as the NHL rookie of the year this season.
“Checks off all the boxes,” Lalonde said of Boughner. “We feel very fortunate. Even in the process, Steve and my priority, the organization priority, was an experienced ‘D’ guy. I preferred someone that played. I think it’s very valuable the fact that he played in the League or someone that coached a lot in the League.
“Huge piece. Ecstatic. What makes me more excited is, he probably had other options, and the fact I think he liked not only where our D corps, our young D core is and where it could be and him being part of developing them , where our team and organization was. So that’s a pretty exciting hire for us.”
NHL.com columnist Nicholas J. Cotsonika contributed to this report