Pheonix Copley Will Likely Back Up Braden Holtby

Posted June 23, 2018

(via Cory Lyons)

Pheonix Copley, 26, will likely be the Capitals backup goalie next season now that Philipp Grubauer, who had been the Caps backup for the past three years, was traded to the Colorado Avalanche. Copley’s contract for next season carries a $650,000 cap hit, and is a one-way contract.

Copley, who was signed as a free agent by the Caps, was a key piece of the trade that brought T.J. Oshie to Washington. Copley was then re-acquired by the Caps in the Kevin Shattenkirk trade.

The North Pole, Alaska native has only one NHL game under his belt, but his AHL numbers show he is ready for the next step. Last season on a depleted Hershey team Copley went 15-17-4 with a 2.91 GAA and a .896 save percentage. In 2016-17 Copley almost single handedly put Hershey in the playoffs going 11-5-0 with a 2.15 GAA and a .931 save percentage.

As far as what this means for Hershey, the Caps have singed goalie prospect Ilya Samsonov to a three-year contract and he is expected to be in Hershey along with Vitek Vanecek.