Calvin Pickard joins Red Wings on two-year deal

Calvin Pickard will be taking his talents to Detroit next season.

The Red Wings made the signing of the two-year deal official on Monday afternoon after TSN’s Frank Seravalli originally broke the news Sunday evening.

According to CapFriendly, he’ll make the league minimum of $700,000 per season.

Pickard split last season with the Philadelphia Flyers and Arizona Coyotes. In his combined 17 games with the two teams in 2018-19, he posted a 4-6-2 record with a 3.86 GAA and .875 SV%.

The move puts the Red Wings in a similar spot as the Maple Leafs heading into the 2019-20 season. Like the signing of Michael Hutchinson to a one-way deal will push Garret Sparks — on the ice or out of the city — Pickard will force Jonathan Bernier to pull up his socks in Detroit.

Bernier, a former starter in Toronto, posted a disappointing record of 9-18-5 with a 3.16 GAA and .904 SV% last season, his first in Detroit. He’s entering the second season of a three-year, $9 million contract.

After being selected in the second round of the 2010 draft by the Colorado Avalanche, Pickard posted solid numbers with the Lake Erie Monsters — the team’s AHL affiliate at the time — before backing up Semyon Varlamov for three seasons.

When Varlamov ran into hip issues during the 2016-17 season, Pickard was thrust to the forefront on an Avalanche team that finished last in the league by 21 points.

The 27-year-old finished the campaign with a record of 15-31-2 with a 2.98 GAA and .904 SV%.

From there, Pickard joined the Maple Leafs organization before collecting starts for the Flyers and Coyotes last year.

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