Penguins goalie Matt Murray is just 23 years old, but he’s already won the Stanley Cup twice in his young career.
As impressive as that is, Murray understands that he has a ton to prove now that he’s the undisputed number one goalie on the Pens roster.
Murray played a key role in both of Pittsburgh’s Stanley Cup triumphs, but he had Marc-Andre Fleury as his backup goalie to help him out during the runs. With Fleury now in Vegas, Murray will have to shoulder more of the responsibility if the Pens will win a third consecutive Stanley Cup.
“Well, [winning the Cup twice] is part of being on a really good team at a really good time,” Murray said, per NHL.com. “I feel very lucky to be with the Penguins so early in my career. Not just to be with the team, but to have a chance to play and especially in these big games, in these big moments. To win two Cups in two years is obviously a good accomplishment, but it’s definitely not an individual accomplishment. I feel very lucky to be on a good team, but to an extent I feel I haven’t done much at all and I still have a ton to prove.”
Injuries have held him back early on in his career. Murray missed the start of last season because of a hand injury he suffered with Team North America during the World Cup of Hockey. He missed a pair of games because of a groin injury between Dec. 31 and Jan. 8, and he was also forced to sit out 11 playoff games last spring due to a hamstring injury.
If Murray can’t stay healthy, the Penguins could be in trouble. Instead of being able to rely on Fleury, they’ll have to turn to Antti Niemi, whose numbers have been less than stellar over the last few seasons.
“Some of that is bad luck, but some of that is I think a little more preventable,” Murray said of his injury history. “It’s about trying to get stronger, trying to eat better, sleep better — everything is going to help your longevity and your fitness. That’s what I’ve been focusing on.”