After five seasons, Frederik Andersen's time with the Toronto Maple Leafs appears to be drawing to a close. However, the Pittsburgh Penguins could become the new home for the 31-year-old goaltender if he tests the free-agent market on July 28.
Andersen is completing a five-year, $25-million contract. He could sign a lesser deal to stay in Toronto if he and the Leafs are comfortable with him backing up Jack Campbell.
The Leafs, however, have $68.9 million invested in 14 players for 2021-22, with first-line left winger Zach Hyman to re-sign. That won't leave enough room to bring back Andersen even on a cheaper deal.
Dan Kingerski of Pittsburgh Hockey Now reported the Penguins seek a veteran goaltender with playoff experience to share the duties with Tristan Jarry. A team source said Andersen is someone they're watching.
Andersen shouldered a heavy workload during his tenure in Toronto. Thanks to the Leafs' often porous defense, no other goaltender faced as many shots over the last five seasons. A knee injury sidelined him for 23 games this season, during which Campbell took over as their full-time starting goalie.
Kingerski acknowledged Andersen's struggles this season but also took note of his solid playoff record. He pointed to the Danish netminder's .936 save percentage during their qualifying-round loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets, his .922 SP the previous year against the Boston Bruins and how he carried the Anaheim Ducks to the 2015 Western Conference Final.
With the salary cap expected to remain at $81.5 million, Andersen could find it difficult to land another starter's job in what's expected to be a buyer's market. He could be receptive to a short-term deal as Jarry's mentor in Pittsburgh.