The Pittsburgh Penguins pulled goaltender Matt Murray during game four of their best-of-seven series against the Tampa Bay Lightning, and almost managed to pull off a win over the Atlantic Division club.
They then kept veteran starter Marc-Andre Fleury, who has been sitting backup to Murray since returning from a concussion, in the net for game five – but after allowing four goals on just 25 shots to fall in overtime, the team is moving back away from Fleury once more.
The Penguins confirmed on Tuesday that Murray will once again get the nod against the Lightning for game six, putting the 21-year-old netminder back in after a game and a half of sitting on the bench.
Looking at his stats overall, it’s certainly not a dangerous move. Fleury posted an .840 save percentage in his game against the Lightning this weekend, and the team is now facing elimination – they may not be willing to take the risk that he’ll remain rusty for a game that they can’t afford him to be rusty in. Murray has posted a collective .923 save percentage in the playoffs so far; they may as well make the move back to him and hope that he’ll be able to continue posting top-tier numbers.
Looking at Murray’s recent statistics, though, the move wasn’t as easy as expected. The younger netminder has posted a .889 save percentage against the Lightning so far – better than Fleury’s numbers in game five, but not by a whole lot – and some wanted to see the team stick to one guy and run with it.
The Penguins will take on the Lightning at 8:00 Pm EST at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida.