Jaroslav Halak has one year left on his deal at $4,500,000 (and a $3,750,000 cap hit). That is, obviously, cheaper than Ilya Bryzgalov's old deal with the Philadelphia Flyers. With Bryz gone, the Flyers need another goaltender because no one in their right mind would think that Steve Mason would be able to do it all by himself with a defense that needs shoring up. Or with a perfect defense, frankly. Or if he built a wall three feet thick around the net.
Frankly, no. Steve Mason is not the answer to the Flyers goaltending needs. He's already damaged goods; why not get another goaltender to break instead? Tim Panaccio of the CSN Philly suggests that the Flyers would love for Jaroslav Halak to be that goaltender. Would that make sense? He's quiet, so the Philly media wouldn't have much fodder; he's starting to develop a wonky groin, and he ended the season on the bench - which is where he spent the playoffs, to boot. The Flyers have their eyes on Tim Thomas, Roberto Luongo, Ray Emery (again) and Jose Theodore - so basically, feasibly, they either deal for Halak or Luongo. Since this is the Flyers, however, I'm sure that we'll be seeing Theodore in orange and black sometime soon.
However, this isn't about the Flyers - this is about the Blues. Do they let Halak go? There is a logjam in goal, yes. However, it's not between three tested starters. It's between a guy who when he's on he's hot but when he's off he has a broken groin, a guy whose confidence issues got him sent to the AHL for a few starts, and a grade-a prospect who shone while he was in St. Louis. Do the Blues need to place the burden on Brian Elliott and Jake Allen? When that tandem is playing well, I have all of the confidence in the world in them. However, the key is that they both need to be playing well. Elliott did in 2011-2012, but he had a month of straight-up terrible hockey (as did the Blues) before he surged back to post the best April in NHL history.
Allen is still young. Would the pressure of being in the NHL consistently be a good thing for him, or no?
Finally, what do the Blues get in return for Halak? The Flyers don't want to trade one of their key guys; they'd rather trade a good player and some prospects. Fantastic. The Blues will have yet another "good player." It would make me feel a lot better if they'd stick with stability in net and just go after a "good player" in free agency, such as Pascal Dupuis.
After all, if "good" is their goal, do you want to send off one of the guys who will keep you good for more good, or do you want to get good for free?