Is Yann Danis NHL Ready?

When the Edmonton Oilers announced they had reached a contract with Yann Danis, I immediately thought it a signing to help bolster the net in Oklahoma City.  I don’t want to say that the Barons would be ‘stacked’ with goaltenders, but there would definitely be more than enough bodies to cover the position should Danis open the season in the AHL.

While I’m still angling for the Oilers to sign Ray Emery to help between the pipes in Edmonton,  the Danis signing is interesting.  Is there a chance that we’ll see Danis on the big club in 2011-12?

NAME: Yann Danis

POSITION: Goaltender

2010-11 NUMBERS:  8-17-3, 3.05 GAA, .910 SV% and 2 SO in 31 GP with Khabarovsk (KHL)

2011-12 SALARY:  $650K (NHL) / $105K (AHL), will become UFA on July 1st, 2012

If only every free agent signing had this sort of carefree feeling to it.  If Yann Danis doesn’t pan out, do you think everyone will run the streets of St. Albert pulling their hair out in one collective shriek?  Not likely.  He’s likely going to see significant action in the AHL with the Barons this year.

Is there a legitimate chance that he opens the season up on the NHL roster?

The short answer is:  maybe.  For the record, I’m optimistically hoping that Dubnyk begins the season as the undisputed number one goaltender in copper and blue colours.  I shouldn’t have to ‘optimistically hope’, as it’s been clear to anyone with at least some form of vision that he was easily the better option last year.  Now let’s add about 30 more starts and see what we get.

Danis spent 2010-11 over in the K, and appeared in just twelve games in 2009-10 with the Devils.  He carried a 3-2-1 record and a very tidy .923 SV%.  With few exceptions, goaltenders have tended to play well in New Jersey for nearly 20 years. Let’s see, who was team that finished worst in the league before the Oilers pulled it off twice in a row?

Ah yes.  The Islanders.  Please  recall their 2008-09 campaign where they finished with a robust 61 points.  Sound familiar to anyone?  (If it doesn’t, let me help you out.  The Oilers finished with 62 in both 2009-10 and 2010-11).  I’m going to compare Yann Danis’ season in 2008-09 with Devan Dubnyk’s season in 2010-11.

Danis, Yann       (08-09 NYI) 10-17-3, 2.86GAA, .910 SV% in 31GP

Dubnyk, Devan (10-11 EDM) 12-13-8, 2.71 GAA, .916 SV% in 35GP

Frighteningly similar, ain’t it?  Two netminders with similar statistics on near-equally bad teams.  I don’t know anyone that wants to endure another season of Khabibulin as the team’s number one.  If the Oilers don’t land Ray Emery, would it be such a bad thing to roll with Dubnyk / Danis as the 1-2?

Danis has to get his reps in.  He hasn’t seen NHL action in a year.  And, while I’m still holding out for Emery, I’ll be watching the 30 year old Danis battle for big league action come camp time.

Have your say:  It’s day one of the regular season.  Realistically, who are your top two netminders?

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