Jacob Markstrom is a likely candidate for the starting goaltender position for Sweden at the upcoming Olympics, but another promising option was Robin Lehner. That isn’t the case anymore, as Lehner tweeted last night that he will not be attending the Olympics.
Lehner, who has been very open about his struggles with mental health over the years, notes that this is a decision that puts that health ahead of his desire to compete for his country in what he calls a “once in a lifetime opportunity.” The uncertainty around what would happen if an athlete tests positive for COVID-19 while in China is part of why he made the decision.
- The Dallas Stars are expected to send Ben Bishop to the minor leagues on a conditioning stint this week, according to Matthew DeFranks of the Dallas Morning News. Bishop hasn’t played since the 2020 bubble playoffs, but is finally getting close to being healthy enough to play again. The 35-year-old netminder is still signed through 2022-23 and carries a $4.92MM cap hit. He’ll become the fourth NHL-level goaltender for the Stars once he’s cleared to return to action, joining Anton Khudobin (who has been on the trade block in recent weeks), Braden Holtby, and Jake Oettinger.
- There was a pretty impressive emergency backup goaltender at Boston Bruins practice today, as Tuukka Rask joined his former teammates despite still not having an NHL contract. Rask is still working his way back from offseason surgery, and has previously expressed that he would only return to the NHL for the Bruins. For now, he remains unsigned, but that could change at some point in the near future if he shows he’s healthy enough to help the team.