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Columbus GM confident Bobrovsky will re-sign soon

May 8, 2013, 11:24 AM EDT

Sergei Bobrovsky Getty Images

Jarmo Kekalainen has a decision at hand with Sergei Bobrovsky.

But even he admits it’s something of a no-brainer.

The Columbus GM all but confirmed signing the Vezina-nominated goalie was his No. 1 priority this offseason, calling Bobrovsky “the MVP of our team” while suggesting a deal would be done shortly.

“It’s going to take its course, and it’s going to take its time,” Kekalainen told the Columbus Dispatch. “Some [deals] are quicker than others. We’ll have to stay more patient with some than others. I don’t anticipate any problems.

“It’s going to be a negotiation. His agent, his representatives are professionals. They have their thought process and we have ours. I’m sure we’re going to reach a result here in the near future.”

On Wednesday, Bobrovsky was nominated for the Vezina Trophy — along with New York’s Henrik Lundqvist and San Jose’s Antti Niemi — which should give him even more negotiating power than he had previously.

And he had plenty to begin with.

Bobrovsky was a revelation in his first season with the Jackets, posting a 21-11-6 record with a 2.00 GAA and .932 save percentage. He was given a slew of monthly and weekly star awards and backstopped Columbus through its late-season push for a playoff spot, which went down to the final game of the regular season.

So, how much will the Russian ‘tender make on his new deal?

It’s a good question. A pending RFA, the 24-year-old Bobrovsky is in the final year of a deal that paid $1.75 million annually.

One could look at the deal Jaroslav Halak got in St. Louis as a possible comparable — in 2010, Halak (then a 25-year-old RFA) signed a four-year, $15 million deal with the Blues.

Their situations are somewhat similar, in that both would cash in on a season of excellence.

Halak got his deal on the heels of a stellar 2009-10 campaign, when he went 26-13-5 with a .924 save percentage and 2.40 GAA during the regular season, then starred in the postseason by carrying the underdog Canadiens all the way to the Eastern Conference finals.

  1. jpelle82 - May 8, 2013 at 12:24 PM

    i said this like 2 months ago when he started playing well and got a bunch of thumbs down then. dont know why they didnt extend him then, price is just going up and up. if they wait too long, someone will throw a ridiculous offer sheet for him and force their hand. they couldve gotten him cheaper if they moved earlier, but hey, looks good either way, he seems to be worth the money.

  2. kelz1966kelz1966 - May 8, 2013 at 1:53 PM

    The Flyers would love to have him back.

  3. hockeyflow33 - May 8, 2013 at 3:04 PM

    Does this just prove that no matter who you are, Philly is hell for goalies?

  4. hockeyfan28 - May 8, 2013 at 5:20 PM

    Might as well say it now his Vezina trophy win will make it very easy for him to get a nice raise which he deserves
    Go bob

  5. hammerhead5573 - May 8, 2013 at 8:45 PM

    Ok this will sound as though I’m picking at but I’m not. Some of his best saves this year were while he was flat on his belly. What was the common theme amongst all those saves????? Almost every shot was low. That was not his problem that was shooters. If they had lifted the puck who knows what would have happened I just happen to think that will be picked up on next year. None the less give him the trophy he earned it.

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