The Minnesota Wild has signed former longtime minor league goaltender Rob Laurie to a pro tryout agreement.
Laurie, age 43, is a 10-year pro veteran with ECHL, CHL, AHL and WPHL experience. His best season came in 1997-98 when he notched a 30-11-9 record to go with a 2.99 goals against average, a .893 save percentage and three shutouts in 51 games with the Western Professional Hockey League’s Fort Worth Brahmas. Prior to the pros, Laurie played four years of college puck with Western Michigan University from 1988-92.
Though he hasn’t technically played since retiring in 2002, this is Laurie’s third NHL team in two seasons after being mustered into emergency backup service with the Anaheim Ducks last year and the Vancouver Canucks earlier this season. He’ll back up Ilya Bryzgalov tonight after rookie Darcy Kuemper left practice early with what’s being called an “upper-body” injury. It’s unknown how long Kuemper will be out. If it’s more than a day or two, Iowa’s John Curry or Johan Gustafsson could be getting a call.
Retired fan favorite Andrew Brunette strapped on the pads after Kuemper took an early exit so the team’s scratches could get some additional practice time. In related news, Dany Heatley once again looks like the former two-time 50-goal scorer he was of old. But that could just be the result of Bruno in net.
Laurie will wear sweater No. 33 with the Wild. He becomes the second emergency backup signed by the club since the 2011-12 season after beer league goalie Paul Deutsch signed an amateur tryout agreement on November 23rd, 2011.
We’ll see you right back here after the game.