This morning, the Ottawa Senators swung a deal for minor-league netminder Ben Bishop. The reported price is a second round pick in 2013. Furthermore, the Senators re-signed the should-be unrestricted free agent which should keep him in the lineup until the end of next season.
Let’s take a look at what he can do for your fantasy hockey team.
Ben Bishop to the Ottawa Senators
With Craig Anderson currently out indefinitely, Bishop gives the Senators another option between the pipes. The difference between him and Alex Auld/Robin Lehner is upside — the hulking netminder won 24 of his 38 starts with an impressive 2.26 GAA and .928 save percentage.
After Auld allowed four goals last night it should be safe in assuming he loses his job when Anderson returns. Bishop’s arrival also means Robin Lehner, who by comparison was struggling in the AHL, is bumped down to third, or fourth, on the depth chart. It could also mean the latter has a very limited future with the Senators organization (and is probably pissed off).
At 6’7″, Bishop is in the mold of current NHL starting goalies. He’s big, he’s athletic and more importantly he’s only 25; think Pekka Rinne, Jacob Markstrom, Anders Lindback, etc. And despite Anderson signing through 2015, the consensus is Bishop will challenge for the position. To give an example of his upside, the previous top AHL netminders have been Cory Schneider, Curtis Sanford, Braden Holtby and Jonathan Bernier. In other words, this kid has potential.
Second round pick to St. Louis
The pick gives the Blues another asset. It also gives them something for a contract that would have expired in a matter of months. With Jaroslav Halak and Brian Elliott signed for years, Bishop clearly had no future in his old organization.
To summarize, you should expect Bishop to start until Anderson returns. Even then, you should expect him to push the veteran for some starts. If you have the roster space, go for it!