Sunday, February 26, 2012
Senators acquire goalie Ben Bishop
By Scott Burnside
With No. 1 goaltender Craig Anderson out of action after slicing his hand in a kitchen mishap, the Ottawa Senators moved to fill that gap by acquiring minor leaguer Ben Bishop from the St. Louis Blues.
Bishop agreed to a one-year, $650,000 deal with the Senators after the trade was finalized, a source told ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun.
"Ottawa's a great hockey city and it's a great, fresh start for me," Bishop said. "I'm really excited. Words cannot describe how excited I am right now."
The 6-foot-7 Bishop fell down the depth chart with the Blues this season with the emergence of Brian Elliott. Elliott, who took part in the All-Star Game in Ottawa in January, is sharing time with Jaroslav Halak in St. Louis.
"I would like to thank Ben for his time in our organization," Blues general manager Doug Armstrong said in a statement. "He was a professional on and off the ice for us and we wish him nothing but the best in Ottawa."
Bishop was the 85th overall pick in the 2005 entry draft. The 25-year-old has appeared in 13 NHL games. He was 24-14 with the Peoria Rivermen of the American Hockey League this season.
"We had talked about a depth goaltender or a goaltender since we didn't have enough depth at that position," Ottawa general manager Bryan Murray said. "Ben is a five-year pro and has had a real growth in his game the last couple of years. (Senators goaltending coach) Rick Wamsley had worked with him for two years and knows him quite well as a person.
"We think this man is ready to play in the NHL at some point here. Whether he plays right away or not, we'll determine that as we go forward."
Bishop, now the tallest goalie in the NHL, was to have become a free agent this summer but agreed to a one-year contract extension as part of the trade. That ensures the Senators will have time to evaluate him.
Alex Auld is Anderson's regular backup. Neither Murray nor Senators coach Paul MacLean would divulge when Bishop would see his first action with the team.
"I'll talk to the coaches obviously after the game (Sunday) and see where we put him," Murray said. "Do we play him a couple games in Binghamton or do we give him a game here? That's under review for discussion at this point."
The Blues will receive a second-round pick in 2013.
Scott Burnside covers the NHL for ESPN.com. Pierre LeBrun and The Associated Press contributed to this report.