Wednesday, February 6, 2013
By Victoria Matiash
Favored to start his second-straight game for the Anaheim Ducks, goaltender Viktor Fasth is living up to pre-season expectations of providing a serious challenge to perceived No. 1 Jonas Hiller. Off to a 3-0 (.946 save percentage, 1.30 goals-against average) start, how does Fasth not get the opportunity to extend his dominating streak?
But ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun warns against suggesting there's a goalie controversy percolating. At least, within earshot of the Ducks' head coach. Bruce Boudreau appears to favor the tandem strategy for this shortened, dense regular season. If both netminders are playing well.
"I don't know if anything's brewing. Fasth is playing really good, Hilly's playing really good in spots but not so well in the others," said Boudreau. "It took a while for Hilly to find his game last year but when he did, from January on, he was almost impossible to beat. So when you have another goalie playing well until Hilly finds his groove ... if you have two guys, you don't have to worry in goal. I think we play 27 games in 46 nights after this road trip here. We can just go one goalie one night and one goalie the other. That's the ideal situation. But we'll play to win and whoever is playing the best will play."
"... But we'll play to win and whoever is playing the best will play." That's the key, of course. So if Fasth performs better than Hiller, the 30-year-old Swede will see more action.