Last year, when it became apparent that Devan Dubnyk and Jason LaBarbera were bottoming out, the Oilers were short of goaltending prospects. Many of their prospects were too poor for the NHL and its rigours, much of that due to crummy scouting earlier on. But, the team had signed NHL back up and experienced AHL’er Richard Bachman. Bachman showed glimmers of brilliance in his time with the Dallas Stars organization. He signed a bargain contract, and remains a main component of the depth between the pipes.
At a glance, Bachman’s numbers are only okay, really. But fans remember a couple tenacious performances from him last season, one of which almost matched Ben Scrivens record night. He has his moments, and sometimes goalies can blossom at the strangest times. Recall not so long ago when Brian Elliot was being ignored by every NHL club after some atrocious play with Ottawa. Now, he heads up a contending club in St. Louis.
That’s not to say Bachman will become the next Martin Brodeur. Far from it. He’s one of those classic “insurance” goalies that you don’t feel any hesitation putting on the ice in a pinch. It’s interesting that he and fellow teammate Viktor Fasth share about the same level of NHL experience. AHL experience? 8 games. Bachman? 136.
It becomes readily apparent that Bachman is THE go to option for a call up should one of the newbies alter. Oilers fans should feel secure that Bachman remains in place. That experience breeds hunger, better hockey sense and improved goaltending if the chips fall just so. Beyond Bachman? Laurent Brossoit is it, really. No other prospects are having any appreciable success.
It’s also incredibly cool that the Oilers have Stephen King’s alter ego as the third option—wait. Okay, I’m being told they are not the same man by my sources. My apologies. Dang–“In net for the Oilers, The Running Man!”
Okay, yes, lame, I know.
But Bachman in the system is no joke.