Fresh from the success of his first NHL victory, would-be Carolina Hurricanes back-up to the back-up, 42-year-old emergency goalie Dave Ayres, was signed by the Blackhawks.
Doubling as Zamboni driver and practice net minder for the Toronto Maple Leafs, Ayres was pressed into duty for the Canes’ when the team’s two goalies both went down with injuries during a Leafs-Carolina game.
“With the trade of Robin Lehner to Las Vegas, we needed a back-up to Crow,” GM Stan Bowman said. “Certainly cap space is an issue.”
However, in a rare moment of candor, Bowman told writers, “We’ve got a better chance of meeting Jesus than making the playoffs, so why in hell should we go out and get someone decent?”
An additional benefit to the signing is that Ayres will continue Zamboni duties.
“We fired our current driver, which will save us another $10,000 per year,” Bowman said. “Too bad we can’t take that off our cap hit.”