September 18, 1982 |
Banská Bystrica, Czechoslovakia
|Height||6 ft 1 in (185 cm)|
|Weight||200 lb (91 kg; 14 st 4 lb)|
|NHL Draft||63rd overall, 2001
Peter Budaj (// boo-DYE; born September 18, 1982) is a Slovak professional ice hockey goaltender currently an unrestricted free agent of the National Hockey League (NHL). He has previously played for the Colorado Avalanche, by whom he was drafted, and the Montreal Canadiens.
Budaj was drafted by the Colorado Avalanche in the 2001 draft as the first pick for the Avalanche and 63rd overall. He wore number 31 for the Avalanche prior to playing for the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL) and the Toronto St. Michael's Majors of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL).
In his first NHL season in 2005–06, he appeared in 34 games while backing up David Aebischer and then José Théodore. He recorded a combined 47 wins in the next two seasons while splitting duties with Théodore. His first NHL playoff appearances came in the 2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs in relief of Théodore in Colorado's second round matchup against the eventual Stanley Cup champions Detroit Red Wings.
For the 2008–09 season, Budaj was named the starting goalie for the Colorado Avalanche for the first time. He and backup goaltender Andrew Raycroft struggled throughout the season as the Avalanche finished last in the Western Conference, missing the playoffs for the second time in last three seasons.
On June 29, 2009, Budaj was re-signed by the Avalanche to a one-year contract for the 2009–10 season. He started the season playing as the Avalanche backup goalie to Craig Anderson, formerly of the Florida Panthers. Before his first appearance in net, Budaj was diagnosed with the H1N1 virus and was completely isolated from the rest of the team until he was cleared to play by the coaching staff. Budaj finally made his first appearance of the season on November 4, against the Phoenix Coyotes. He stopped 28 of 29 shots and backstopped the Avs to a 4–1 victory. Budaj made his second post season appearance on April 22, 2010 against the San Jose Sharks, when he relieved Craig Anderson at 11:05 in the third period. The Sharks won the game 5–0, with one goal scored against Budaj.
On April 1, 2011, Budaj became the first Slovakian goaltender to reach 100 career NHL wins with a 4–3 shootout win over Phoenix.
Budaj signed a two-year contract worth $2.3 million with the Montreal Canadiens on July 1, 2011. During the lockout shortened 2012–13 season, his second year as backup to Carey Price, Budaj carried an 8–1–1 record in 13 games, to earn a two-year contract extension with the Canadiens on April 10, 2013.
On October 5, 2014, Budaj and Patrick Holland were traded to the Winnipeg Jets in return for Eric Tangradi. He was waived less than a day later. On the following day, he was assigned to the St. John's IceCaps, Winnipeg's American Hockey League affiliate, after clearing waivers.
Budaj, a devout Christian, is perhaps best known for having the depiction of Ned Flanders, a popular religious character from TV's The Simpsons painted on the back of his masks. In 2008, Budaj began wearing a mask featuring the character Altaïr from the popular video game Assassin's Creed. The mask primarily worn by Budaj during the 2008–09 season features a burgundy colored version of the comic book hero The Hulk, although he did continue wearing the Assassin's Creed mask as well. Budaj's 2009–10 mask features his racing idol Valentino Rossi on one side, the Avalanche's alternate foot logo on the other, and retains Ned Flanders on the back. Budaj's 2013–14 mask still has Ned Flanders' image as well as an image of Argentine soccer star Lionel Messi. Ned Flanders continues to appear on Budaj's 2014–15 mask, without Lionel Messi.
Peter and his wife Taylor have one son, Peter Jr., who was born in July 2010.
Awards & achievements
Regular season and playoffs
|1999–00||Toronto St. Michael's Majors||OHL||34||6||18||1||1676||112||1||4.01||.882||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|2000–01||Toronto St. Michael's Majors||OHL||37||17||12||3||1996||95||3||2.86||.907||11||6||4||621||26||1||2.51|
|2001–02||Toronto St. Michael's Majors||OHL||42||26||9||5||1148||89||2||2.29||.922||12||5||6||620||34||1||3.29||.898|
|2014–15||St. John's IceCaps||AHL||19||0||9||6||913||54||0||3.55||.888||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
- Associated Press (2007-11-03). "Game Recap – Canucks 4, Avalanche 3". NHL. Retrieved 2007-11-04.[dead link]
- "Avalanche GM Giguere pays price for poor season". nhl.com. 2009-04-13. Retrieved 2009-04-20.
- Dater, Adrian (2009-06-30). "Budaj signs deal, likely No. 2 in net". denverpost.com. Retrieved 2009-06-30.
- Frei, Terry (2009-10-27). "Swine flu fells Avalanche goalie Peter Budaj". The Denver Post. Retrieved 2010-01-01.
- "Back from swine flu, Budaj gets win in first start of season for Avs". CBS Sports. 2009-11-04. Retrieved 2010-04-25.
- "Nabokov, Couture lead Sharks to 5–0 win over Avs". boston.com. 2010-04-22. Retrieved 2010-04-22.[dead link]
- "NHL Free Agent Tracker". The Sports Network. Retrieved 1 July 2011.
- "Canadiens re-sign backup Peter Budaj for two-seasons". CBS Sports. 2013-04-10. Retrieved 2013-04-10.
- Peters, Chris (5 October 2014). "Jets acquire G Peter Budaj in three-player trade with Canadiens". cbssports.com. Retrieved 5 October 2014.
- Wyshynski, Greg (6 October 2014). "NHL cut day: Peter Budaj, Colton Orr among the waived". yahoo.com. Retrieved 6 October 2014.
- Short, Robin (7 October 2014). "Veteran NHL goalie assigned to IceCaps".
- Dater, Adrian (2010-11-09). "Faith is just one goal for Avs' Budaj". denverpost.com. Retrieved 2010-11-28.
- Dater, Adrian (2008-11-17). "Mailbag: Man behind the Mask". denverpost.com. Retrieved 2009-04-20.
- "Budaj getting swagger back into his game". foxsports.com. 2008-03-20. Retrieved 2009-01-10.
- David Hutchison (11 October 2009). "Peter Budaj’s 2009–2010 Colorado Avalanche Mask". Retrieved 5 November 2009.
- Boysen, Greg. "Peter Budaj Gets A New Mask - Sep 30 2014". gohabsgo.com. Retrieved 5 October 2014.
- "Colorado Avalanche 2010 Media Guide" (PDF). Colorado Avalanche. 2011-02-03. Retrieved 2011-02-03.