The Detroit Red Wings like what they see in the play of prospect goaltender Jared Coreau, writes Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press. The 25-year-old goalie is dominating in the AHL playoffs as he leads the Grand Rapid Griffins in their playoff run. He stopped 26 of 27 stops Saturday to win Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals against the San Jose Barracuda. In fact, he made 16 saves in the final period to stave off six Barracuda power play opportunities. He has aided the Griffins to an 8-1 record in the playoffs and could be a prime candidate to take over backup duties in Detroit next season.
The team currently has veteran Jimmy Howard in net as the starter and 25-year-old Petr Mrazek as the backup. However, Coreau spent three months with Detroit after Howard suffered a knee injury and played well in spots, even getting the nod to start the Jan. 1 outdoor game against Toronto over Mrazek. His 3.47 GAA in 14 games wasn’t always pretty, but there were shining moments through his stint at the pro level as well.
As reported a week ago, the Red Wings may be looking to move on from the 33-year-old Howard, who has two more years at $5.29MM. Despite his 3.04 GAA in 50 games this season, many believe that Mrazek is ready to move up into a starting role and Coreau’s recent success will only aid the Red Wings endeavors to find a taker for Howard’s contract.