Minnesota Wild holds contest to find emergency goalie

  • Arun Morace

Sometimes, a backup goalie just can’t get to the game on time. In those rare instances, hockey teams need an on-call emergency goalie, who can…sit on the bench until the backup gets there, or, god forbid, actually step into the game if the starter gets hurt and the regular backup isn’t available.

Sounds like a pretty sweet gig, right? Get to be part of the NHL action, all without probably ever having to step onto the ice. Maybe just sit on the bench for 20 minutes if you’re really needed. Last year, the Minnesota Wild actually needed an emergency goalie to “back up” starter Niklas Backstrom after regular backup Josh Harding got hurt and third stringer Matt Hackett couldn’t make his flight from Houston, where he was stationed on an AHL stint with the Wild’s minor league affiliate Houston Aeros.

So, what did the Wild do? They called on 51-year old Paul Deustch, who plays goaltender in an amateur men’s league.

But this year, the Wild gave anyone willing the answer the call an opportunity to be the new Paul Deustch. They held a contest to be their new emergency goalie today at Xcel Energy Center. That’s right, they didn’t go the Philadelphia Eagles route in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and hold it at some high school. They actually held the tryout at their home arena.

They selected 11 goaltenders from around the state to compete for the spot. Via NHL.com, the 11 were: Tyler Brigl, 27, Saint Paul, Minn.; Kevin Donohue, 23, Minneapolis; Ryan Ess, 31, Minneapolis; Shane Hudella, 41, Hastings, Minn.; Amy Jones, 29, Brooklyn Center, Minn; Treye Kettwick, 29, Minneapolis; Mark Klaers, 44, St. Louis Park, Minn.; Mark Ostlund, 24, Saint Paul, Minn.; Alan Strahota, 27, Burnsville, Minn.; Joshua Swartout, 24, St. Louis Park, Minn.; Adam Timperley, 30, Rogers, Minn.

No word yet on who won, but it’s pretty cool that these 11 got the chance of a lifetime to kind of be part of an NHL team…as long as, you know, the lockout ever ends.

By Arun Morace

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