2023 TRAINING CAMP - GOALTENDERS
No prizes for guessing the starter, with Igor Shesterkin firmly in control of that position. Shesterkin will continue to see around 60 games of action, and will look to improve from last year’s relative down year after winning the Vezina. It’ll be interesting to see how the Rangers star netminder does in Laviolette’s system, but he’ll hope that the team will help him out a bit and get the puck out of the zone with a bit more consistency.
A new backup this year in LA King legend – and Ranger fan from his youth – Jonathan Quick. Quick was unceremoniously dumped by the Kings last year at the trade line, and ended the season as a backup in Las Vegas after a brief stay – on paper – in Columbus. Can Quick arrest his downward spiral, and adjust to life as a backup on a team that is looking at their third such player in the last three seasons, or will the experiment fail and see the once proud American relegated to retirement or even the AHL.
Garand enters his second pro year vying for the starting job in Hartford. A strong playoffs – 5-3 record with a .935 Sv% and 1.76 GAA – which helped the Pack upset the higher seed twice before falling in the Atlantic Division finals, provided a counterpoint to an up and down seasons where he finished with a .894 Sv% and 3.01 GAA. Many expect the former World Junior gold medal winner for Canada to make the next step this season, and usurp Domingue as the starter.
For his part, veteran Louis Domingue will be there to provide a backstop in case Garand struggles, and both Garand and Domingue could be called upon this year if Quick struggles as a backup.
Both Talyn Boyko and Olof Lindbom figure to spend a good amount of time in the ECHL this coming season, with the newly affiliated Cincinnati Cyclones. Who will get the most starts is yet to be seen, but Lindbom is coming off an underwhelming first year in North America, while Boyko is entering his first pro season. Boyko might have a slight edge as the less tested prospect, though they could easily end up in a platoon situation along with anyone else that the Cyclones elect to sign.
For Lindbom it’s a make or break season, and the 23 year old Swede could very well find himself without an NHL contract next season if he doesn’t find a way to make some significant progress.