With Igor Shesterkin quickly establishing himself as the number one goalie for the Rangers, there had been speculation that Alexandar Georgiev had requested a trade. Speaking with reporters, including Larry Brooks of the New York Post, the netminder put that idea to rest:
The rumors were false, I don’t know where that came from. You can be dealt pretty much as a player without a no-move clause, so I just worked as usual and tried not to think about it.
While he may not have asked for a move, the fact he was in trade speculation was certainly understandable. The four-year, $22.667MM contract given to Shesterkin this offseason cements him in that starting role moving forward, pushing Georgiev’s future with the team in question. Georgiev himself indicated that last season was “tough” and “no fun” where he was in the number two role, making just 18 starts while posting a 2.71 GAA along with a .905 SV%.
The 25-year-old is in the final season of his two-year bridge deal, one that carries a cap hit of $2.425MM while he will be owed a qualifying offer of $2.65MM next summer. Both of those numbers are certainly reasonable for a second-string backup but if Georgiev has eyes on a bigger role, that opportunity will have to come elsewhere barring a long-term injury to Shesterkin.
Young goalies with some upside – Georgiev has a career .912 SV% in 96 games – don’t typically come available too often and there are certainly some rebuilding teams that have openings to give him a bigger role. As a result, while Georgiev may not have asked out, he’s still quite likely to be in trade speculation for the foreseeable future.