Back in November, Pittsburgh GM Jim Rutherford admitted that the Penguins’ two-goalie system wasn’t working as well as he’d hoped.
Flash forward to the present, though, and Rutherford is sure glad he didn’t break down and trade Marc-Andre Fleury.
After all, Matt Murray was hurt for most of the first two rounds of the playoffs, and Fleury saved the day.
“I’m very happy we have the two goalies we have, but I never changed my position from the start of camp. I never wavered on it,” Rutherford said today. “I had some calls during the season asking about him. Those conversations didn’t go very far.
“I know there were times during the season where it became a little more difficult for the coaching staff and for the goalies because they both wanted to play. And when they were both healthy, it didn’t work ideal because one guy maybe sat a little longer than he wanted. But as it’s turned out, it’s worked good for both guys.”
Fleury is 8-4 with a .927 save percentage this postseason. And while Murray is healthy enough to back up now, the Penguins are expected to start the veteran Saturday in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Final against Ottawa.
“I think Marc deserves the right to play,” said head coach Mike Sullivan. “He’s played so well for us, and he’s really at the top of his game. But having said that, we have Matt who’s a quality goaltender as well. Just like all of our players on our team, we can’t predict how series unfold or what comes our way. So we just want to have as many healthy bodies as we can available to us to help us win.”