The New Jersey Devils announced they have terminated the conditioning loan of goaltender Cory Schneider and have recalled the veteran netminder. To make room for him, the team has assigned promising goaltender MacKenzie Blackwood to the Binghamton Devils of the AHL.
Schneider returns home after showing improvement in his most recent conditioning stint, as he has allowed just five goals over the past two games with Binghamton this weekend, including picking up a big shutout win Saturday over Belleville in which he made 24 out of 26 saves. Schneider has struggled with injuries and success this season. Even with his improved performance this past weekend, he still has a 3.24 GAA and a .881 save percentage with Binghamton over eight games. His numbers in New Jersey have been even worse with a 4.66 GAA and a .852 save percentage. The hope is that he’s starting to recover from his abdominal strain and might be ready to serve as the team’s backup goaltender. The 32-year-old still has another three years on his contract at $6MM per season.
As for Blackwood, the team’s future might have to wait some time longer. Blackwood’s impressive play with New Jersey this season has given him the title of goaltender of the future. The 22-year-old has a 2.37 GAA and a .926 save percentage in 13 appearances. There is talk that the team may look to trade Keith Kinkaid, who will be an unrestricted free agent this summer, at the trade deadline, which would allow the team to officially make Blackwood the team’s starter. For now, Blackwood will have to settle for the starting role in Binghamton, where he was recently played at the AHL All-Star game and will bide his time till an opportunity presents itself.