After playing coy with his goaltenders for the entire series, Florida Panthers head coach Kevin Dineen played it (somewhat) straight prior to Thursday’s Game 7 against the New Jersey Devils.
“If Jose [Theodore] is healthy, he’s going,” Dineen said after Wednesday’s practice. “I watched him for a few minutes and he looks pretty good out there this morning, so that’s encouraging for us.
“Theo’s been our go-to guy and if he’s available, he’ll be the one running with it.”
Even though it sounds like Theodore will be the guy, it’s doubtful Dineen’s comments will temper speculation about Thursday’s starter. The Panthers head coach has flip-flopped between goalies throughout this series — Theodore started Games 1-3, Clemmensen started Game 4, Theodore returned to start Game 5 but got hurt, forcing Clemmensen to start Game 6 — leading many to suggest Dineen’s latest assertion doesn’t really mean anything.
Of course, it’s hard to imagine him not playing Theodore if the 35-year-old is healthy. He was rock solid in Game 5, stopping all 30 shots faced for his first playoff shutout since 2004, looking far more solid than Clemmensen did in Game 6, especially on this tally from Devils forward Steve Bernier:
To be fair, Clemmensen did stop 39 of 42 shots in the overtime loss.
The San Jose Sharks have assigned forwards Nikolay Goldobin and Melker Karlsson and defenseman Mirco Mueller to AHL San Jose.
Goldobin and Mueller are both first-round picks — the former in 2014, the latter in 2013.
Goldobin had one goal and two assists in five preseason games. It’s possible he could be called back up when the NHL suspends Raffi Torres.
Torres remains part of the 23-man roster (see below) but is facing a lengthy ban for his hit on Anaheim’s Jakub Silfverberg. Torres has a hearing today.
Rookie defenseman Dylan DeMelo is also on the roster. The 22-year-old had one goal and two assists in four preseason games.
Curtis Glencross’ hard-luck preseason continued on Monday, as the Avalanche announced they released him from his training camp tryout.
Glencross had previously been cut from Toronto’s camp, which he described as “kind of a shock” move. Following that release, the 32-year-old quickly shifted to Colorado but arrived fairly late in the overall process, and only got a bit of exposure before being let go.
While some thought yesterday’s trade of Freddie Hamilton to Calgary may have opened up a spot for Glencross, the Avs now appear to be going in a different direction.
A two-time 20-goal scorer that netted 13 in 71 games last year, it’s unclear what lies ahead for Glencross.