The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed goalie Thomas Greiss to a one-year, $1 million contract.
Greiss is not a big-name goaltender, but he’s put up impressive numbers in limited appearances as an NHL back-up. The 28-year-old has a career save percentage of .915 in 69 appearances with San Jose and Phoenix, and he went 10-8-5 with a .920 save percentage last year with the Coyotes.
Which, of course, brings us to Marc-Andre Fleury, the much-maligned 29-year-old who has one year remaining on his own contract before he can become an unrestricted free agent.
Barring a trade, Fleury will likely go into the season as Pittsburgh’s No. 1; however, it’s worth noting that he’s lost his starter’s job before, to Tomas Vokoun in the 2013 postseason. Not to mention, the Penguins have a new coach in Mike Johnston, and there is a significant level of ownership dissatisfaction with how the team has performed in the playoffs since winning the Stanley Cup in 2009.
At the very least, if it’s a duo of Fleury and Greiss, the latter should push the former.
Greiss said opportunity to play late in the season when Smith went down helped him show what he could do. Overall, enjoyed his time in AZ.
One win, even in the frosty outdoors for the NHL 100 Classic, only means so much.
Still, the Ottawa Senators probably experienced some ice-cold relief on Saturday, beating the Montreal Canadiens 3-0 during a tightly defended outdoor bout.
It was 0-0 for much of the game until Jean-Gabriel Pageau tipped an Erik Karlsson shot for the first goal with about five minutes remaining in the second period. Bobby Ryan then capitalized on a rough Jonathan Drouin turnover to make it 2-0, while an empty-netter iced the icy evening for Ottawa.
For a night, it was a fun time, and Karlsson reminded us what all the fuss is about, as he logged a ridiculous 32:55 of ice time. And he seemed to be having a good time doing it.
This night laid the “Canadian” on thick, with Bryan Adams performing during the event, and Gary Bettman posing for photos with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau?
Carey Price generated some nice saves of his own, but couldn’t will Montreal to win in his 10th consecutive start. The Habs rarely got things going against the Senators, seen most easily in Ottawa’s 38-28 advantage in shots on goal.
Nights like these make a bigger impact on fans’ memories and bottom lines, but this marks consecutive wins for the Senators either way. Considering the fact that the Senators hadn’t put back-to-back wins together since they faced the Avalanche in two contests in Sweden, it might not be a big deal, yet it’s far better than the nothing they’ve been coming up with far too often lately.
In other news from the event, Mario Lemieux’s “five goals, five different ways” was named as the NHL’s greatest moment, voted by fans:
Let’s be honest, virtually any time a team gets its players to embrace a holiday theme, it’s in the name of goofiness. And bless NHL teams for this.
When it comes to Movember, you get the fantastic combination of mustaches and charitable contributions.
The holidays are rapidly approaching (hey, I see that Amazon tab open), so we’ll start to see various New Year’s/Christmas/Festivus/etc.-themed fun. Even with that in mind, the Washington Capitals will be tough to top with their collection of Christmas tunes.
Question: which performance stood out to you the most? While Braden Holtby was fantastic (with a Tomas Plekanec-level turtleneck game), the simple entertainment of watching Alex Ovechkin sing is tough to top.