Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final may have been Marc-Andre Fleury‘s last game as a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins, but that doesn’t mean the organization doesn’t appreciate the work he put in this season.
If GM Jim Rutherford does move on from Fleury this summer, it will strictly be a business decision. The Pens have a number of players they need to re-sign, including blue liner Justin Schultz, so getting Fleury’s salary off the books will be important.
The fact that there’s an expansion draft doesn’t help his chances of sticking around.
After winning the Stanley Cup on Sunday night, Rutherford made sure to mention just how vital the 32-year-old was during Pittsburgh’s run.
“Fleury is probably the best team player in all of sports,” said Rutherford.
“He carried us at different times of the season, carried us through two rounds of the playoffs, turned it over to Murray. I talked at the start of the season about keeping two goalies and these guys did exactly what I hoped they’d do. They got us the cup.”
To his credit, Fleury never openly complained about losing the starting job to Matt Murray last year or this year. He could have easily become a distraction in the locker room, but he chose to handle the situation with class.
Since joining the Penguins in 2005-06, Fleury has started 707 games (384-220-70) and he’s been part of three Stanley Cup-winning teams.