Leafs Back Reimer, Re-sign Him for Three Years

Updated: June 9, 2011 at 12:01 pm by Alexander Monaghan

It’s Reimer, Reimer, gotta be starting Reimer.

That is what Brian Burke and company are singing today after their Toronto Maple Leafs reportedly signed starting goalie James Reimer to a three-year contract. The 23-year-old finished tied for 10th in the League in save percentage, starting 22 of the remaining 24 games.

As a rebuilding team, the Leafs hope they have found their piece between the pipes and can continue building from the net on out. The deal is believed to be worth roughly $1.8 million per season for three consecutive years which would put Reimer in the same range as Jonathan Quick and Sergei Bobrovsky. Interestingly enough, the contract would be annually less than minor league goalie Jussi Rynnas and more than “headcase” Jonas Gustavsson.

When you consider other question marks like Dan Ellis, Nikolai Khabibulin, Mike Smith and Antero Niittymaki make a comparable-to-excessively greater amount of money, this contract seems like a risk the Leafs are willing to make as their other options create much more uncertainty.

While Leafs’ fans may think they have their guy, it should be mentioned how he wore down as the season went on. Considering the former fourth round pick of five years ago holds very limited pedigree and did not necessarily dominate the AHL there should be some cause for concern as his peripherals went down every month of the season, finishing with a healthy, but likely unsustainable .920 SV%.

SV% for the month Cumulative SV%
January .931915 .933054
February .925926 .928444
March .913333 .922014
April .909909 .920635

It does not take an analyst to realize which way a graph would turn. In addition, his GAA rose from 2.31 to 2.60, which is solid but certainly not enough to carry a non-playoff team. His six losses over the last two months instead dictated that he would assist a decent team but would not be enough to piggy back them into the show.

His GAA could be blamed on a porous defense, it could also be a lack of offense. Regardless, it should be a cause for concern. However, his decreasing SV% indicates that the league could have already figured him out, or even worse he could be a bit over his head.

In standard 12-team mixed leagues he could have a chance at a .920 SV% but his GAA will probably get no better than 2.50. These statistics can certainly be helpful but make sure to not overpay for his hype as we have not seen just how much worse those stats could get.




Antero Niittymaki, Brian Burke, Dan Ellis, James Reimer, Jonas Gustavsson, Jonathan Quick, Jussi Rynnas, Mike Smith, NIkolai Khabibulin, Sergei Bobrovsky, Toronto Maple Leafs