Ever since it was announced that incumbent starting goalie Robin Lehner would be out for the entirety of the 2022-23 season following hip surgeries, it was clear to many that the Vegas Golden Knights’ situation in their crease would be relatively wide-open. The team is intent on returning to the playoffs after their first playoff miss in franchise history, and they now have a trio of netminders competing for the chance to lead them back to the postseason. Among that trio, it appears we have a frontrunner.
As relayed by SinBin.vegas, Golden Knights head coach Bruce Cassidy told the media that Logan Thompson, an undrafted netminder whose heroics nearly saved the team’s playoff hopes last spring, is “ahead” of both offseason additions Michael Hutchinson and Adin Hill in the team’s goaltending competition. While both Hutchinson and Hill are vastly more experienced than Thompson, Thompson, 25, presumably provides the team with the most upside at that position. As mentioned, Thompson excelled last spring and finished his debut NHL campaign with a .914 save percentage in 19 games. While relying on a goalie with just 20 games of NHL experience is a major risk for a team desperate to resume Stanley Cup contention, it seems that the Golden Knights have faith that Thompson can be the person to lead them back to success.
Now, for some other notes from across the NHL:
- While forward Brad Lambert was one of the most divisive players of the 2022 entry draft cycle, it seems that such debates over his merit are over in Winnipeg. Per Murat Ates of The Athletic, Lambert’s agent, Rick Curran, and the Winnipeg Jets have had “positive” contract talks regarding an entry-level deal, and Curran is confident that a deal will be reached before the start of the season. While Lambert might have a hard time breaking into one of the Jets’ scoring lines to start this season, his impressive play this preseason could force the Jets into a more aggressive timeline regarding his transition to North American professional hockey.
- With over 800 NHL games and a Stanley Cup ring on his resume, former St. Louis Blues and Toronto Maple Leafs forward Tyler Bozak has had an accomplished NHL career, and an especially accomplished career given his status as an undrafted player. Per The Athletic’s Jeremy Rutherford, Bozak is in no rush to add to that resume. In a recent mailbag article, (subscription link) Rutherford writes that Bozak is only interested in playing in a “few select situations,” and is “content” hanging up his skates if such an opportunity fails to materialize. Bozak skated in 50 regular-season games for the Blues last season to go along with 12 of their playoff contests, and he scored a combined 14 points in that time frame.