Flyers sign G-Leighton to two-year deal

The Flyers have officially signed goaltender Michael Leighton to a two-year deal worth a total of $3.1 million.

Leighton, 29, is set to make $1.5 million for the first year and $1.6 for the second, equaling a cap hit of $1.55 through the 2011-12 season.

However, the signing doesn’t automatically mean that Leighton is handed the starting spot because according to Tim Panaccio of CSNPhilly.com, the Flyers aren’t done shopping.

“Sources said even with Leighton in the fold, the Flyers will pursue another goalie in free agency.”

Free agency begins on Thursday, July 1.

Leighton, a journeyman backstop, was brought in for his second tour of duty with the Flyers when he was claimed off of waivers from the Carolina Hurricanes on Dec. 15, 2009.  Because of  injuries to Brian Boucher and Ray Emery, Leighton was quickly handed the reigns to the starting spot and he performed admirably, going 16-5 in the regular season with a 2.48 goals against average.

But it was his playoff performance that earned him a new contract.  Big and well positioned, Leighton helped the Flyers reach the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time since 1997 with a playoff-leading 2.46 GAA.  He led the post season in shutouts with three and ranked third in playoff wins with eight.

With Leighton now wrapped up and the team still looking for another goaltender, the situation is grim for current back-up goalie Boucher, who is in the second year of a two-year deal which pays him $.925.

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