Goalie nods: Khudobin gets second straight start, raising eyebrows in Anaheim

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Anton Khudobin will make his second straight start for Anaheim tonight in Nashville.

Khudobin stopped 34 of 35 shots in a 4-1 win Sunday over Minnesota. It was the Ducks’ first victory of the season, so perhaps it’s no surprise that coach Bruce Boudreau will try to replicate that result against the Predators.

Still, the decision has raised some eyebrows, because Frederik Andersen‘s goaltending has been far from the Ducks’ problem this season. Andersen has a .947 save percentage in his four appearances. He just hasn’t received any goal support. Twice the Ducks have been shut out when he’s started. His other start they only scored once and lost in a shootout.

As this article in the Los Angeles Times explains, the goaltending situation in Anaheim is an interesting one. Andersen is a pending restricted free agent. Khudobin is a pending unrestricted free agent. And then there’s young John Gibson, currently in the minors but signed through 2018-19, his one-way extension starting next season.

If Gibson is destined for the NHL next season, that means it’s unlikely that both Andersen and Khudobin will be back. So, who will the Ducks choose? That may depend on what each of them request in negotiations, and/or what Andersen could fetch on the trade market.

Pekka Rinne will be in goal for Nashville.

Elsewhere…

Sergei Bobrovsky for Columbus (story here). Devan Dubnyk for Minnesota.

Andrew Hammond for Ottawa (story here). Cory Schneider likely for New Jersey.

Henrik Lundqvist for the Rangers. Mike Smith likely for Arizona.

Marc-Andre Fleury for Pittsburgh. Antti Niemi likely for Dallas.

Roberto Luongo for Florida. Corey Crawford for Chicago.

Braden Holtby for Washington. Ryan Miller likely for Vancouver.

Martin Jones for San Jose. Jhonas Enroth likely to get his first start for Los Angeles.