When he was drafted 11th overall in 2006, it appeared as if Jonathan Bernier was scheduled to be the goalie of the future in Los Angeles. Of course, over time, that appeared less and less likely. That is not a detriment to Bernier or his game, instead it was due to the emergence of one Jonathan Quick, who, fresh off his all-star year, his Vezina nomination, Conn Smythe and Stanley Cup wins and his new 10-year contract, has made Bernier’s days with the Kings numbered. Nevertheless, Bernier has contributed a fair deal to the Kings.
After appearing in 25 games in 2010-11, Bernier, a native of Laval, Quebec, appeared in just 16 games this season. During his time on the ice, he went 5-6-2 with a 2.36 goals-against average and a .909 save percentage recording a shutout along the way.
In two full seasons with the Kings, the 24-year-old Bernier has solidified himself as one of the more admiral backups in the game today. While he didn’t see much action this season, he did make the most of his appearances and (I like to think) that any time he wasn’t so spectacular in goal was due to rust. Nonetheless, Bernier’s efforts were great and should not go unappreciated.
This off-season, Bernier said that he expected there would be a trade soon that would see him leave town. With Jonathan Quick’s new deal, I doubt that Bernier will be content on warming the bench for the next decade.
This certainly isn’t the end of the road by any means for Jonathan Bernier. He will find a team who needs solid goaltending and I certainly hope he fits in well. If Bernier will be traded this off-season, I wish him all the best in the future. He was a great goaltender for the Kings and if it’s time to move on, then so be it.
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