The Capitals apparently have found their No. 3 goaltender and his name is Joe Cannata.
In a relatively quiet day for the Presidents’ Trophy winners, the Caps signed former first-round draft pick Brett Connolly to a one-year, one-way, $800,000 contract, then filled out their organizational depth by signing Cannata, defenseman Darren Dietz and forward Christian Thomas to one-year, two-way deals.
Cannata, 26, is expected to challenge for the No. 1 job with the AHL Hershey Bears next season and be the Caps’ emergency goalie if Braden Holtby or Philipp Grubauer gets injured.
Cannata has 88 games of AHL experience but has yet to play in a regular-season NHL game.
A 6-foot-1, 200-pounder from Wakefield, Mass., Cannata played for the Utica Comets of the AHL last season, posting a 20-13-6 record with two shutouts, a 2.52 GAA and a .909 save percentage in 40 games.
In 88 games with Utica and Chicago of the AHL, Cannata has posted a 41-33-6 record with two shutouts, a 2.59 goals-against average and a .911 save percentage.
Cannata also went 15-10-2 record with one shutout, 2.34 goals-against average and .921 save percentage in 28 career ECHL games with Ontario and Kalamazoo.
Cannata spent four seasons (2008-12) at Merrimack College (NCAA), posting a 59-46-16 record with seven shutouts, a 2.47 goals-against average and a .915 save percentage in 122 games. He holds the school record in wins, games played, goals-against average, save percentage and saves (3,152).
Dietz, 22, registered five points (one goal, four assists) and 13 penalty minutes in 13 games with the Montreal Canadiens last season.
The 6-foot-1, 201-pound defenseman was drafted by Montreal in the fifth round (138th overall) in the 2011 NHL fraft. Dietz earned 16 points (four goals, 12 assists) and 61 penalty minutes in 61 games with the St. John’s IceCaps in 2015-16.
Thomas, 24, registered two assists in six games with the Arizona Coyotes and Montreal Canadiens in 2015-16. He has earned three points (one goal, two assists) in 27 career NHL games with the Rangers, Montreal and Arizona. Thomas was drafted by the Rangers in the second round, 40th overall, in the 2010 NHL draft.
The Toronto native recorded 21 points (10 goals, 11 assists) in 34 AHL games with Springfield and St. John’s last season and has 107 points (52 goals, 55 assists) in 219 career AHL games with Connecticut, Hamilton, St. John’s and Springfield.