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It’s official: Oilers sign Bryzgalov to one-year deal (Updated)

Nov 8, 2013, 7:32 PM EDT

Ilya Bryzgalov Getty Images

According to both TSN’s Aaron Ward and the Winnipeg Sun’s Ken Wiebe, the Edmonton Oilers and Ilya Bryzgalov have a deal in place which will bring the infamous goalie back to the NHL.

UPDATE: Edmonton confirms, adding that it’s a one-year deal. According to John Shannon of Sportsnet, the deal is worth $1.75 million.

It’s worth noting that Bryzgalov is to be paid $23 million from the Flyers over the next 14 years, which works out to $1.6 million per year. As such, he’ll stand to made a tidy sum this season.

The move will also bring Bryzgalov back to the Western Conference, where he enjoyed the finest seasons of his career. Bryzgalov’s best campaign came during 2009-10 in Phoenix, when he posted career-best totals in victories (42), games (69), shutouts (eight), goals-against average (2.29) and save percentage (.920). He also helped the Coyotes set franchise records for wins and points in a season.

In what looks to be a related move, the Oilers have also signed goalie Chet Pickard to a minor-league deal. That’s worth mentioning because Pickard’s agent is Ritch Winter, the same guy that represents Bryzgalov.

The timing of the move — which came shortly after Edmonton traded longtime defeseman Ladislav Smid to Calgary — couldn’t be better, as the Oilers will play in Philadelphia tomorrow.

As a member of the Flyers, Bryzgalov won 52 regular season games in 99 games played. He struggled mightily last season, posting a 19-17-3-1 record with a .900 save percentage and 2.79 GAA.

As for what lies ahead in Edmonton…well, here’s a classic Bryzgalov interview in 2006 reacting to Chris Pronger‘s return to the city:

The money quote?

“Here in November months is a minus-32. Could you imagine? It’s eight months in a year of snow.”

Ironically enough, Bryzgalov decided to join the Oilers on Nov. 8.

  1. canucks30 - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:36 PM


  2. phillyphanatic77 - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:37 PM

    Have fun Edmonton fans. If you like sociopathic netminders who let in weak goals on a nightly basis then blame the guys around him, Bryz is your man. I’d take Dubnyk over this guy all day every day, no matter how poorly he’s playing. Atleast he wont blame everyone else when he fails miserably. Enjoy… Steve Mason is proving it wasn’t just the Flyers D.

    • detwings - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:15 PM

      and the flyers are proving this year that it isn’t just their D

      • biasedhomer - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:18 PM

        Yep, their defense along with Mason in net is keeping them in the games. The offense is just atrocious.

      • stakex - Nov 8, 2013 at 9:08 PM

        Their defense and goaltending have been solid, but they are still 13th in the league in goals against. Not as bad as last year (22nd), but not great either.

    • gregman98 - Nov 8, 2013 at 9:02 PM

      Phiillyphantic, I see you climbed out from under from a mountain of shame to make a post (what with your predictions about how awesome the Failers would be this year)…good for you!

      • phillyphanatic77 - Nov 9, 2013 at 4:37 AM

        Forgive me for being an optimistic… I believe if you look back at almost all preseason predictions you’d see atleast 70% had the Flyers finishing top-4 in Metro (which still isn’t out of the question). Just look at the HockeyNews preseason mag. There’s too much offensive talent to keep losing 2-1, eventually the puck will have to go our way- it’s just the law of averages. I will say their effort against NJ was atrocious and had me screaming like a menopausal woman but it’s far from over. There’s talent here; the captain needs to step up; Downie needs to get healthy; and the ENTIRE forward corps needs to get off its snide, but that can only take one game. The PK is great, the defense is solid, and Emery but especially Mason have been stellar.

        If you think im happy and not shocked then you’re wrong, but all is not lost. It’s the easiest division to come back in. And aside from the Caps debacle and the Pens game, almost every match the Flyers have been within a goal. A few tweaks, more production from the stars, and some simple adjustments (get god awful Mez out) and the Flyers could be this years caps team, they have the talent. How Bout LA barely making it as an 8seed and winning the Cup. Or the Flyers in 09-10 making the postseason on a shootout on the final day then running to the Cup…. I’m not saying that’s the future but this club has the ability when they’re on their game (rare I kno) to beat anyone. Wait more than 12-15 games before celebrating your own genius you clown.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Nov 9, 2013 at 4:38 AM


  3. tru2joelu4eva - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:38 PM

    well this should be catastrophic

  4. canucks30 - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:39 PM

    Bryzgalov’s 5 Hole is “Humongous Big”

  5. martysbetter - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:41 PM

    The Oilers are going to make the playoffs and Bryz is going to win the Vezina this year.

  6. canucks30 - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:41 PM

    • mcphillthy - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:04 PM

      Lol. Awesome

    • lordfletcher - Nov 8, 2013 at 10:20 PM

      coming from a Canuck fan too 😀

    • esracerx46 - Nov 9, 2013 at 12:00 AM

      Not sure why I noticed this….but its Russia and they’re playing The Offspring….and it didn’t sound like they bleeped the f word in the song….but I suppose the language barrier would negate harm?

  7. prd797 - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    He decided to join the Islanders?

  8. blackandorangeforlife - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:50 PM

    So long in getting them to take Coburn off our hands!

  9. canucks30 - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    “Ironically enough Bryzgalov decided to join the Islanders on Nov. 8”


  10. canucks30 - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    I’m assuming the Islanders botch will be corrected soon enough.

    Nevertheless, remember 30 years ago when the Oilers and Islanders were actually relevant?

  11. blackandorangeforlife - Nov 8, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    Watch him play and get a shutout tomorrow…..Oh the Irony!

    • mcphillthy - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:05 PM

      The way this season is going I fully expect that to happen

  12. porkchopexpress1969 - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    Lol overrated goalie.

    • prd797 - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:17 PM

      I wish I was an overrated bought-out goalie. Getting paid 1.6 million for 14 years to not even play for a team sounds like a great set-up.

  13. icelovinbrotha215 - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:15 PM

    Financially, he is making out like a bandit. Hockey-wise, I don’t know if he will even have the motivation to play at a competitive level.

    • blackandorangeforlife - Nov 8, 2013 at 9:16 PM

      Great point!

      • icelovinbrotha215 - Nov 8, 2013 at 9:29 PM

        Thanks. I just call it like I see it.

  14. fleuryvokounftw - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:15 PM

    I hope he has a comeback year and plays like he did in Phoenix. Good luck Bryz!

  15. vanindeed - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:19 PM

    what do the Oilers have to lose?

  16. govtminion - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    I don’t ask much, oh great hockey gods, but… PLEASE put him in net tomorrow night…

  17. sjsharks66 - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:23 PM

    I always liked Bryz. Hope he has an amazing year and proves all the naysayers wrong.

  18. thedavesiknowiknow - Nov 8, 2013 at 8:27 PM

    I think it’s funny how people were crediting him for being the guy who literally kept the Coyotes in every game a few years ago, and are now mocking him for not doing the same for a fundamentally flawed Flyers team. Here’s a wild prediction: he’ll be an upgrade from the current Oilers goaltending, but his numbers will be below average, and the Oilers won’t win a ton of games. Sorry, I mean: the guy says weird stuff, has been short with a media a lot of other players have lost their cool with, and sometimes lets in goals he shouldn’t. See how knowledgeable I am?

  19. stakex - Nov 8, 2013 at 9:20 PM

    Look, as we can see, Bryz was far from the Flyers only issue last year. I know the popular narrative from Flyers fans is that their defense and goaltending are playing really good this year…. but its still only average, and might have something to do with their coaching change. Last year the Flyers defense was a clown show, and Bryz didn’t have much help on a lot of nights.

    That’s not to say he played good or anything, but he wasn’t as awful for his Flyers stint as some want to believe. Flash back to his time with the Coyotes and he was pretty solid in net, and its not impossible to think he could find that form again.

    In the end I think the Oilers are smart to take a shot on Bryz. Their seasons in the tank anyway, so there is nothing but upside. He plays great, maybe he can give them a shot at the playoffs or at the very least they might have found a solution in net. If he plays terrible, they part ways after the season and are no worse off then right now.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Nov 9, 2013 at 10:27 AM

      And yet Steve Mason put up the better numbers than he is right now in that “clown show” (and his #s are currently excellent), while Bryz tore apart the lockerroom ( just like his Phoenix teammates said he would). Bryzgalov needs a 100% defensive system to succeed. He needs Tippett. He’s inept handling the puck, he doesn’t communicate with his defense, and he pouts when he he doesn’t get his way. He may provide a boost at first but it won’t be long before he’s blaming the Oilers defenders, who, by the way, are worse than the Flyers.

      Maybe it succeeds, but this wreaks of desperation to me.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Nov 9, 2013 at 10:30 AM

      Oh and by the way, one of the major reasons Bob was traded was bc he didn’t get along with Bryz, so look out Dubnyk. Bryz is a poor teammate and could be a cancer in a young lockerroom like that.

  20. buysamadrink - Nov 8, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    I’m wondering if part of the contract demands were that the Oilers add a bear trapper to the training staff? I give him two weeks before he’s staring endlessly at the northern lights, mesmerized.

    • guitarhunterdude - Nov 9, 2013 at 2:34 AM

      Staring at the auroras, saying “the universe, man. The UNIVERSE!”


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