A bunch of situations to discuss this week, so let’s get right into it:
Buffalo Sabres- Ryan Miller is dealing with a sinus infection, and although Buffalo doesn’t play again until Saturday, there’s a chance he may miss that game. Miller has lost four in a row (one was in a shootout where he came in the third period late in a tie game) but has yet to show flashes of his 2010 form when he won the Vezina and backstopped the United States to a silver medal at the Winter Olympics. Backup Jhonas Enroth earned his first win sine November 2011 stopping 32 of 33 shots against the Rangers in a 3-1 win on Tuesday and played brilliantly before allowing two late goals to the Devils and leaving the game with cramps in his previous start. True, it’s a small sample size, but there are worse options out there, especially if Miller struggles or is out for an extended period of time.
Carolina Hurricanes- With Cam Ward lost for mostly likely the regular season, Dan Ellis was supposed to be next in line. But Justin Peters is making his case, with two solid starts in three outings. In particular, he had a 26-save shutout against the Capitals on Tuesday. He has two career shutouts, and both have come against the Capitals. Ellis was expected to get the start Thursday night as the two appear to be in a rotation right now, but my guess is, head coach Kirk Muller will ride the hot hand.
New Jersey Devils- Martin Brodeur has resumed skating on his own but is still a ways away from returning. That means Johan Hedberg continues to shoulder the load. Since losing seven in a row, Hedberg has now won three of four. In each of the wins, he has made 23 saves and allowed two goals. He has played better so he’s worth a look if you need help. At least you won’t have to worry about a timeshare with him, with Brodeur still out a while.
Ottawa Senators- Talked about this situation last week, but it looks like Robin Lehner has taken over the starting job while Craig Anderson remains out. Lehner has started the past three for the Senators, and four of five. True he only has one win but his four losses have all come in overtime and the shootout, so it’s not like he hasn’t kept his team in games. And with a .944 save percentage that would trail only his teammate Anderson for the league lead if he were eligible, he can definitely help those needing a goalie.
St. Louis Blues- Jake Allan has started three of four for the Blues, and has won all three starts. True, he’s allowed three goals in two of those but overall, he is 6-1 with a 2.63 goals against average and .903 save percentage. Jaroslav Halak is his only concern, though he has been struggling lately. I wouldn’t worry about Brian Elliot right now, as last seasons success seems like an aberration.