In fact, things were ugly enough that the Penguins’ living legend/partial owner/guy who received statue treatment Mario Lemieux felt the need to visit the team’s locker room to console the struggling netminder.
Mario Lemieux entered the locker room to offer Marc-Andre Fleury encouragement after the game. Good owner.
Without proper context in what was said to the 29-year-old goalie, it feels sort of like a netminder’s answer to a GM giving a coach a “vote of confidence.” Still, it’s a nice gesture from Lemieux.
Here are the two goals in which Fleury seemed to unravel:
As you may remember, Fleury struggled enough to find himself on the bench during the 2013 Stanley Cup playoffs, but Tomas Vokoun isn’t (currently?) available to try to save the day. In case you’re curious, here’s a quick comparison between the regular season numbers Fleury and his 26-year-old, little-known backup Jeff Zatkoff generated in 2013-14:
Fleury: 39-18-5 with 2.37 GAA and .915 save percentage in 64 games played
Zatkoff: 12-6-2 with 2.61 GAA and .912 save percentage in 20 GP
Zatkoff isn’t very experienced, so maybe Lemieux really was going out of his way of saying “Don’t read anything on the Internet, because you’re our guy.” But we can only speculate.
Let’s assume Lemieux was looking a little more dapper, like he was during the Penguins’ championship run quite a while ago:
At the age of 39, it looks like Eric Boulton still has at least one more campaign in the NHL left in his career.
The New York Islanders announced that Boulton has agreed to a one-year deal for the 2015-16 campaign. The financial terms weren’t disclosed, but it’s a one-way deal, according to Elliotte Friedman.
This will be Boulton’s fourth season with the Islanders, but he’s only played in 48 games with the club. That’s partially due to a hand and lower-body problems, but he’s also been scratched when healthy. When he does play, Boulton serves as an enforcer.
He made headlines in that role during the preseason while he was participating in the Islanders’ training camp on a tryout basis. He attempted to fight Washington Capitals forward Tom Wilson, who ended Lubomir Visnovsky’s 2014-15 season, and when Wilson refused Boulton claimed it was because he “was scared to death.”
Capitals coach Barry Trotz countered that by saying that he specifically told Wilson not to fight Boulton. Now that Boulton has signed with the Islanders though, perhaps they’ll get into a sparring match during the regular season.