Should Toronto Maple Leafs Start James Reimer or Jonathan Bernier?

September 9th, 2013 by Jonathan Willis Leave a reply »

One of the most dramatic battles for playing time in the NHL this season should come in the Toronto net.

In 25-year-olds James Reimer and Jonathan Bernier, the Leafs have two plausible starting goalies. While they may use a platoon system for a time, eventually the team will have to choose which netminder it prefers for the No. 1 job.

The mere fact that there is a question may indicate which way the team is leaning right now.

Reimer is the incumbent. He played 33 of the Maple Leafs’ 48 games last season and all seven of their playoff contests. He has now played more than 100 games for Toronto, and if Leafs management was confident that he could get the job done, it would not have bothered trading for Bernier in the offseason.

Bernier, after all, was not a cheap acquisition. He cost Toronto backup goalie Ben Scrivens, young winger Matt Frattin and a second-round draft choice.

More than that, he cost the team cap space—the Leafs retained $500,000 in salary when they dealt those two players and upgrading Scrivens to Bernier meant spending $2.35 million m ...

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