Oilers snare Garon

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 7:23 AM ET

Edmonton wanted Mathieu Garon, and Mathieu Garon wanted Edmonton.

So it was only a matter of time until the two sides got it done.

"On July 1 they were one of the first teams that called, so we were talking right from the beginning," said the Quebec-born goaltender, who signed a two-year deal with the Oilers yesterday (terms not released yet). "And I wanted to be back in Canada. I kind of missed that the last couple of years in L.A. So Edmonton was my first pick."

TRAIN WRECK

Though the Kings had a train wreck of a season last year, Garon still put up some decent numbers there (a 2.66 GAA, and winning record, 13-10-6) on a team which finished 15 games below .500.

"My stats weren't too bad for a team that had a bad record, but with all the changes and Dan Cloutier coming to L.A., I think the best thing for me was to get out of there."

Garon offers Edmonton a viable option when Dwayne Roloson needs a break, something that Jussi Markkanen couldn't deliver with any consistency last year.

"I don't think number of games is a big concern for me," he said. "I just want to make sure I get to training camp and as a new player make a good impression. From there we'll see how much I play, but I'm sure I'll get my chance.

"I know Dwayne is a really good goalie, so we'll see what will happen."

RARE SIGNING

He's a rarity, an unrestricted free agent who signed with the Oilers, but for the life of him he doesn't know why the city is having trouble attracting big names.

He says don't underestimate the drawing power of a hockey-mad city.

"In L.A. it was different; hockey is not the major sport," said the 29-year-old. "When the Kings were coming up to play in Canada, all the guys were really excited.

"It was something special, something that's kind of missing (in the U.S.)."


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