Quite a few teams will be entering into this years Stanley Cup playoffs with questions swirling around their goalie situation. Anaheim and St. Louis have a choice to make on who to start, Nashville’s Pekka Rinne is in a slump and Pittsburgh’s Marc-Andre Fleury has had well documented postseason struggles. The concern that is most rampant throughout the league however centers around goalies making their playoff debut.
Ottawa (Andrew Hammond), Vancouver (Eddie Lack), Winnipeg (Ondrej Pavelec), Minnesota (Devan Dubnyk) and Tampa Bay (Ben Bishop) are all making their postseason debuts. As for the Detroit Red Wings, Petr Mrazek is making his playoff debut as well, which has created an awkward situation in Detroit.
You see according to Detroit’s other goalie Jimmy Howard, coach Mike Babcock didn’t tell him of the decision to start Mrazek. According to Howard, he found out through his goalie coach.
“Q: Jimmy, did [Babcock] tell you after the Carolina game, or the next day or what?
Howard: He hasn’t talked to me at all.
Q: Your coach hasn’t talked to you?
Q: So your learned it…
Howard: I was told by my goalie coach.”
Howard was Detroit’s main goalie through most of the season, but now he will be a high paid spectator.
“I mean, it’s up to him. He’s probably got a lot on his plate right now,” Howard said. “For me, it’s just about focusing and just being ready if called upon.”
You can watch the video of the interview here and make your own judgements on Howard’s body language.
Detroit starts the playoffs against the Tampa Bay Lightning Thursday at 730pm EST.