The New Jersey Devils have placed Jonathan Bernier on injured reserve with a lower-body injury, meaning Akira Schmid is on his way up to the big leagues. Bernier last played on December 3 against the Winnipeg Jets, allowing six goals on 32 shots. Overall this season he hasn’t been very busy, appearing in just ten games and posting a .902 save percentage.
Schmid meanwhile has been outstanding for the Utica Comets, posting a .944 and 8-0-2 record in ten games. The 21-year-old netminder is in his first year of professional hockey after spending the last few seasons in the USHL, but looks like the transition will be no problem for his 6’5″ frame. Should Schmid get a chance to play, it would be his NHL debut.
- Speaking of goaltenders making debuts, Daniil Tarasov has been sent back to the AHL after playing in his first three NHL games. The young netminder was up while Joonas Korpisalo dealt with a non-COVID illness, which he has now recovered from. Korpisalo was activated from injured reserve and will resume his duties alongside Elvis Merzlikins in the Columbus Blue Jackets net. That is of course unless the team makes a trade at some point, one that looks even more likely now that Tarasov has shown he can handle things at the NHL level. The 22-year-old posted a .936 save percentage in his three appearances.
- Zach Fucale made his own NHL debut earlier this season with the Washington Capitals, posting a 21-save shutout after a long minor league career. He’s back up with the Capitals again, recalled as a precaution with a back-to-back coming up. The team has been dealing with COVID protocols and injuries all season, so having a third goaltender with the group gives them a little insurance in case the worst happens.