Canucks sign NCAA free agent goaltender Michael Garteig

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Image: Quinnipiac Bobcats

The Vancouver Canucks have signed 24-year-old free agent goaltender Michael Garteig to a one-year entry-level deal.

At this time, there are no details on the compensation provided on the contract.

The Prince George native plied his trade at Quinnipiac University in the NCAA for the last four seasons where, year over year, he saw improvement in all of his numbers.

His senior season concluded with a loss to Canucks prospect Brock Boeser and North Dakota in the NCAA Frozen Four Final. However that loss shouldn’t overshadow the great season Garteig had, finishing the campaign with a 32-4-7 record, 1.91 GAA, 0.924 SV%, and 8 shutouts.

He also made saves like this…

Garteig

Before attending Quinnipiac University, the 6’1″, 190-pound Garteig played three seasons in the BCHL with Powell River, and another season with the Penticton Vees, where he had an astounding record of 41-4-0, winning the RBC Cup.

He attended Canucks development camp in 2014, where he seemed to leave a positive impression on management that likely resulted in the Canucks keeping tabs for the remainder of his NCAA career.

Garteig is a goaltender who relies on his athleticism to aggressively challenge shooters. He possesses excellent rebound control in an effort to limit second and third opportunities. He also tracks the puck very well to ensure that he isn’t surprised by an opportunity.

With Canucks top prospect Thatcher Demko agreeing to a contract last week, the question is where does Garteig fit?

Since the Canucks have Richard Bachman under contract next season, it’s a fair bet that Garteig will start in the season in the ECHL as the starter and move up progressively. This is ideal for Garteig, as he will be able to see a lot of pucks early, adapt to the pro game and then hopefully begin his ascension up the professional ranks.

Given that Garteig will turn 25 in the fall, he will need adapt quickly if he hopes to carve out an NHL career. But given his ability to show continued improvement with more playing time and a foundation of skills, he is worth the gamble of a contract for the Canucks.

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Ryan Biech Hockey writer for Vancity Buzz
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