LeBrun: Pittsburgh shopping for backup goalie

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ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun reports the Pittsburgh Penguins are in the market for a backup goalie, looking for a replacement for current second-stringer Brent Johnson.

LeBrun notes that Minnesota backup Josh Harding is high on GM Ray Shero’s list. Harding, 27, is an unrestricted free agent on July 1 and has been solid for the Wild this year, posting a 9-9-3 record with a .919 save percentage and 2.59 GAA.

It’s not surprising the Penguins want a new caddy for Marc-Andre Fleury. Johnson’s been terrible of late — hooked in two of his last three starts — and as a result, Fleury has been forced into action on his days off, which he hates because as a salaried employee, he’s not eligible for time-and-a-half.  He’s got full dental though, which is nice.

Forcing Fleury into extended action has been a common theme in Pittsburgh this season. The Pens played 11 games in January and Flower was the goalie of record in 10 of them, a big reason why he’s on pace to set a career high in appearances.