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Report: Tim Thomas ‘closing in on a decision’ (Updated)

Sep 10, 2013, 11:38 AM EDT

Tim Thomas AP

A tweet from ESPN’s Craig Custance reads: “Tim Thomas closing in on a decision. Possibly today. Discussions continue with multiple teams.”

It was reported in July that Thomas was exploring an NHL return. The 39-year-old goalie took last year off to focus on “friends, family and faith.”

An unrestricted free agent, Thomas is free to sign anywhere he likes. As for which teams might be interested, it really depends on what kind of role he’s willing to accept, and for what kind of money.

The New York Islanders, to whom Thomas (more specifically, his contract) was traded in February, make some sense given the questions about Evgeni Nabokov. (Update: Isles not involved, per Newsday’s Arthur Staple.)

But one could make a case for a lot of teams to roll the dice on the 2011 Conn Smythe Trophy and two-time Vezina Trophy recipient, especially if it’s as a cheap insurance policy with massive upside.

Update (12:03 p.m. ET):

Apparently, Thomas isn’t looking to be a back-up…

Related: Listing the five cheapest goalie tandems in the NHL

  1. shanesander - Sep 10, 2013 at 11:48 AM

    Colorado? Lives there, Roy’s trying to improve the goaltending situation (think its more reflective of the defense IMO), tons of cap space (not that it rly matters), plus his kind of political state LOL

    • stakex - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:12 PM

      Colorado is far from his kind of political state. Their Governor is a Democrat, as are both of their Senators. On top of that Obama won the state last election by 5%. Hardly a wing-nit conservative state in line with Thomas’s politics.

      • elvispocomo - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:31 PM

        Don’t forget the legalized pot. He might like the team, but hardly his kind of state.

      • gentlepher - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:46 PM

        Ah, but Thomas lives in Colorado Springs, the home of Focus on the Family and other ultraconservative entities. That city is as red as they come. He’s right at home there.

        Regardless, I don’t want him on my team. I don’t think he’d get along with Roy and while Varly may be questionable, I think it’s too early to give up on him.

      • jpelle82 - Sep 10, 2013 at 1:46 PM

        you cant be so naive as to lump all of colorado’s residents or policies in with all the liberals in denver. 4 counties are currently trying to secede from the state and they have even enlisted counties from nebraska to try to join a new state (Northern Colorado) if successful. sounds right up his alley.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:22 PM

        jpelle, given the legal requirements, such as needing the approval of Congress and each state losing territory, the secession effort has very close to zero chance of success.

      • leboism - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:39 PM

        He played in Massachusetts, one of the most liberal states in the union, and he seemed to play and live just fine there.

      • jindenver - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:39 PM

        Not really. Denver and Boulder are far from his kind of political state. He lives in Colorado Springs — filled with right-wing wingnuts. This is absolutely his kind of place (I live in Denver), because all the rational people are confined to a 40 mile radius.

      • rickchablis - Sep 11, 2013 at 8:40 AM

        He was so fine with Mass… he left it it for no reason

      • nj666 - Sep 11, 2013 at 1:37 PM

        Apparently you haven’t noticed that half the state is mega conservative and wants to separate the north and south of colorado.

  2. mcphillthy - Sep 10, 2013 at 11:49 AM

    I would like to see him end up in Nashville behind Rinne. I wonder if he would take a role ad a back up though. 1.5m this year to see what he has left in the tank?

    • jl9830 - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:38 PM

      How clearly does it have to say in the article that Thomas does not want to be a backup?

      • mcphillthy - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:15 PM

        It may help if I read a little better next time then. Ha. I don’t know if anyone is hurting bad enough to give him the starting job after taking a year off. Its gotta make people hesitant. He shouldn’t expect everyone to welcome that idea. Make him earn his spot.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:17 PM

        9830, my reading of the posting times would suggest that mcp commented before the update about being a backup.

      • zdeb93 - Sep 10, 2013 at 3:05 PM

        comment at 11:49 am, update at 12:03 pm… it’s called sequence of events, chill out

  3. jcmeyer10 - Sep 10, 2013 at 11:51 AM

    He’s finally decided which MRE brand he will go with for his bunker.

    • ballistictrajectory - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:25 PM

      As long as he leaves the BBQ Bits N Pieces for the rest of us…

  4. runhigh24 - Sep 10, 2013 at 11:52 AM

    Flyers LOL

  5. multiplemiggs - Sep 10, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    isles do make sense

  6. davebabychreturns - Sep 10, 2013 at 11:56 AM

    Might not be his style of wackjob but both Florida the hockey team and Florida the state seem like a great fit for Thomas.. he loves to Stand His Ground in the crease after all…

    • nj666 - Sep 11, 2013 at 1:39 PM

      he and georgey boy can be butt buddies

  7. mjw9326mjw9326 - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:06 PM

    I rather doubt he wants a backup job and will want a lot of money.With the cap going down, it may be tough to fit him in.
    Besides, he was not exactly a great teammate in Boston, from what I recall hearing. Does a team want to take a chance on a guy who has not played in a year, is a year older, wants a lot of money and may be a head case on the hope he can regain his career year style of ply. It’s a lot of risk for a maybe reward.

  8. ryanoffski - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:08 PM


    • pxland - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:35 PM

      Dear God, no!

  9. stakex - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    Hopefully him and his sideshow just retire.

    • greenmtnboy31 - Sep 12, 2013 at 9:23 PM

      That was quite the sideshow he put on in 2011.

  10. mgp1219 - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:20 PM

    “closing in on a decision” = waiting to see who will take him.

  11. terrier92 - Sep 10, 2013 at 12:43 PM

    Do not underestimate Tim Thomas
    The guy is mentally tough can stop the puck and is a winner
    Best of luck Tim
    Thanks for all you did for Bruins

  12. redridershoottheireyeout - Sep 10, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    I would think that anyone that disses this idiot president would be welcome anywhere North of the Border, Calgary maybe now that Kipper is done?

    • kitshky - Sep 10, 2013 at 1:27 PM

      You’re not too familiar with Canadian politics are you?

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:32 PM

        To expand on kitshky, in the last election, 2011, the Conservative party drew less than 40% of the votes cast, while more liberal parties got almost all the rest. Because of how the system works, the Conservatives ended up with a majority of seats in Commons and the right to lead the government. I’m guessing that Canada’s acceptance of gay rights, abortion and contraception, and universal health coverage might not be Tim’s cup of tea. For his politics and religious views, it would seem he might be happier in the KHL in the new Russia under Czar Vladimir and his Orthodox allies.

      • kitshky - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:34 PM

        And just a little further to that, a Canadian “Conservative” is still probably left of Obama…

      • dueman - Sep 10, 2013 at 5:06 PM

        kitshky – You should really learn the difference between right and left!

      • kitshky - Sep 10, 2013 at 9:25 PM

        No. I know exactly what Left and Right are… and I repeat (as a fan of Obama I might add) if anyone actually believes that Obama is a left-ist, and that a Canadian conservative is actually Right leaning they’re dreaming.

        So once again, a Canadian “Conservative” is still usually left of Obama.

      • rsmaggiemae - Sep 12, 2013 at 2:03 AM

        He is a good goal tender, but he should have learned years ago, to keep his mouth shut and keep his political views to himself … and he should have bit the bullet and went with the team to see the President even though he is in disagreement with him on everything, it showed no respect for the Office of the President of the United States.
        I would not want him as my goalie ….. he shows no tolerance for a different view point other than his own Is that the way he would treat members of his team who would disagree with him on plays or if they were to criticize his playing ability???
        I think he is a hot head if you dont agree with him on politics….and maybe other issues who knows

    • nj666 - Sep 11, 2013 at 1:40 PM

      when did he diss bush?

  13. jernster21 - Sep 10, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    Florida makes the most sense right now with Clemmenson getting hurt. There’s no chance for him in Colorado – they already have Varly and Giggy under contract.

  14. dropthepuckeh - Sep 10, 2013 at 1:56 PM

    Anyone else find it strange that so many people here are so intolerant of his politics? Why does it matter at all? Also, if people here are so open-minded and liberal, shouldn’t you be accepting of ALL views regardless of which “side”. You are exactly what you fear, intolerant and single-minded.

    I bet Thomas lands a starting gig and once again proves all his doubters wrong by re-establishing himself as one of the NHL’s top goalies. While I don’t agree with his politics I respect his passion and dedication and will be forever grateful for his effort in 2011.

    • sabatimus - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:20 PM

      “Anyone else find it strange that so many people here are so intolerant of his politics? Why does it matter at all?”

      Because Thomas’ politics led to him putting himself first instead of team first. And then, when he explained why, he said it wasn’t a political decision (BS) and that it would be his only statement about the matter. He then went on and used his Facebook account as a political forum.

      By the way, accepting someone’s view is not the same as agreeing with it or immunizing it against criticism, in case that was part of your point.

      • dropthepuckeh - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:39 PM

        Pretty sure he was the main reason the Bruins won the Cup in 2011 so your “putting himself above the team” argument goes out the window. He did what he did for the betterment of the team. If he wants to walk away from hockey for a year for any reason he isn’t screwing his team, they didn’t have to pay him and they had a capable player ready to step in. He walked away from millions of dollars so he is hardly “putting himself first”.

        Why you care about what anyone says on Facebook is something you should discuss with your teenage friends. As for accepting vs. agreeing blah blah. No sh*t dude. I have plenty of friends with different politics than my own. I don’t care about the politics of athletes. I accept them all as people with unique perspectives. I don’t get angry at them if they feel strongly about something with which I disagree. Get over it dude and get off Facebook, kind of creepy. TT doesn’t owe you or anyone else anything.

      • sabatimus - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:43 PM

        Wow, your assumptions are so far over the top I don’t even know where to begin. But I’m done with you, because I don’t care to be insulted.

      • dueman - Sep 10, 2013 at 5:18 PM

        I don’t see any insult?

    • lordbrucegiles - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:41 PM

      He can disagree with someone’s politics all he wants. I sure didn’t agree with Bush about much, but I would’ve gone and met him at least for the team’s sake and my own character’s sake. What he did was classless. I definitely don’t want him on any team for which I root.

      • dropthepuckeh - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:50 PM

        Athletes and entertainers do it all the time but usually it is a liberal who is refusing to meet with a Republican President. Nobody cares that they do it, why do you care so much with him? I wouldn’t do it either but I respect his right to protest by not attending.

  15. andyreidisfat - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:12 PM

    Lmfao @ counties seceding ahhaha. Why are people so f’n crazy in America. Canada I sometimes envy you !

    Anyway wing nut Thomas should sign on to play in Russia. That way he can find out what a real subversive gov. Is like. He may be a good not great goalie, but he is crappy disrespectful person. I wouldn’t want him on the flyers no way no how.

    • nj666 - Sep 11, 2013 at 1:47 PM

      I know, could you imagine the conservative uproar if say Marty Brodeur decided not to go to the White house in 03′ the same year that quagmire in Iraq started. I’m sure those on the team knew he wasn’t a good president but they went anyway out of respect to the country and the leader of the free world. Tim Thomas is free to do as he pleases and I’m also free to call him a dbag for it. I’m also laughing at the fact that most teams have decided on their starting goalies and this fool wont take a backup position. Seems like beggars can be choosers.

  16. canucks30 - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:51 PM

    He’s more than welcome to pump Luongo’s tires in Vancouver

  17. defenz77 - Sep 10, 2013 at 2:53 PM

    The Sabres should do all they can to sign Thomas. Miller isn’t happy and isn’t going to play that well. There you go…starting goalie.

  18. cliverush - Sep 10, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    Playoffs against Tampa- 3rd. period, 1 goal game, Doc Emerick sceams “Oh! And Thomas makes the save.” Never forget it B’s fans.

  19. nananatman - Sep 10, 2013 at 4:06 PM

    I wouldn’t put much faith in an agent that can’t spell client, unless the “l” is silent and invisible in which case cleint is right.

  20. borgsng - Sep 10, 2013 at 7:03 PM

    May he will end up as a Washington Cap lol

  21. hockeyflow33 - Sep 10, 2013 at 7:15 PM

    His jersey should be in the Garden rafters and his statue should be out front.

    Whichever team he goes to will be lucky to have him. I think the B’s win the Cup if they have him in net for the Cup finals

  22. vincentbojackson - Sep 10, 2013 at 8:24 PM

    Please just retire Tim. We’re doing just fine without all your drama.

  23. iHeartHockey31 - Sep 10, 2013 at 9:28 PM

    Maybe he IS going to Vancouver. And he hasn’t signed yet because Vancouver still has to do a little ‘housekeeping’ in order to meet Thomas’s demands of ‘being a #1’ goaltender. Playing ‘guess where Timmy will play?’ isn’t as much fun as ‘where will Lu end up?’. Let’s go back to making up hypothetical places for Lu to play & then we can have Timmy hypothetically sign with Vancouver.

    I think some teams US might be reluctant to sign Timmy because they’re worried, if they DO manage to win the Stanley Cup, the president might not invite them to the white house because the president is still mad about Timmy snubbing the invite. Another reason he could be seeing his way to Vancouver.

  24. seanb20124 - Sep 10, 2013 at 10:26 PM

    He was a racist for not going to see Obama?

    Theo Epstein was a hero for snubbing Bush?

  25. rickchablis - Sep 11, 2013 at 8:32 AM

    There are a lot of teams that could use him – but if Buffalo was smart they’d go for a deal. Miller wants out, and the Isles could definitely use Miller. In return, Buffalo would get a replacement for Miller.
    Thomas would probably NOT play in Canada – so those teams are out of the mix. Pitt or Philly could use him, too.

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