An NHL source confirmed Thursday that the Coyotes, who are in the market for a second goaltender with NHL experience, are interested in Curtis Joseph and that the team has had talks with his agent, Don Meehan.
Joseph, the biggest name free-agent goalie still available, is believed to be seeking between $2 million and $2.5 million per season, but his options are becoming limited. Joseph, 38, was in the running to be a mentor for Marc-Andre Fleury, the No. 1 pick in the 2003 draft, in Pittsburgh but lost out when the Penguins acquired Jocelyn Thibault from Chicago on Wednesday.
Tampa Bay (Sean Burke), Chicago (Nikolai Khabibulin) and Philadelphia (Robert Esche) have all recently locked up top goalies, and it is unlikely Joseph will return to Detroit, which has Manny Legace and Chris Osgood in the fold.
Meehan told the Toronto Sun on Wednesday, "I’m talking to a couple of teams, and I hope to have something at the end of the week."
One factor in Phoenix’s favor is Joseph, a two-time All-Star, is familiar with new Coyotes assistant Barry Smith. Both were with the Red Wings the past two seasons.
Joseph, who has a reputation for excelling in the clutch and the postseason, has played for St. Louis, Edmonton, Toronto and Detroit and compiled a 396-289-90 record during his 15-year NHL career. Injuries limited him to just 31 games in 2003-04.
If the Coyotes do not sign Joseph, they could also look at working a trade with another team that has a surplus of goalies.