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Even More Pressure For Leighton

from Mike Brophy of Sportsnet,

This is it for Michael Leighton.

The Philadelphia Flyers goaltender, who finds himself still auditioning for work nine years into his professional career, needs a bounce-back game. Not just to get his team back into the Stanley Cup final, but to ensure his future in the game.

Recently turned 29, he is one of the more unlikely potential Stanley Cup heroes, having bounced around the NHL and the American Hockey League for most of his career. However, after his performance in Game 1, when he allowed five goals on 20 shots, he’s also one step closer to oblivion. OK, maybe that’s an exaggeration. The kid has played well enough in this, the Year of the Lousy Goalie, to at least gain the interest of one of the other 29 teams, so I doubt you’ll find him selling pencils on the streets of Philly next winter.

That doesn’t change the fact he desperately needs to rebound. He needs that one career-defining, Bernie Parent-like super solo effort that shuts the door on the Chicago Blackhawks, because you just know the Hawks are going to come guns-a-blazing in Game 2. The Blackhawks will be determined to expose him for what he is - a guy who has never been able to hold down a No. 1 goaltender’s job in this league.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: michael+leighton

Comments

Red Winger's avatar

This is it for Michael Leighton.

The Philadelphia Flyers goaltender, who finds himself still auditioning for work nine years into his professional career, needs a bounce-back game. Not just to get his team back into the Stanley Cup final, but to ensure his future in the game.

Maybe I’m getting old. Maybe it’s the heat. But my ability to read some hockey writers grows increasingly less by the week.

This is the same Leighton that was held up as one of this post season’s miracle stories, right?

The same Leighton whom the media lavished praise endlessly on his 29th birthday just a few short weeks ago?

And now his “future in the game” will be determined by the next few games?

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 05/31/10 at 01:17 PM ET

Moq's avatar

Even if Leighton doesn’t bounce back I think he’ll get a decent contract somewhere. Not in the Luongo league of contracts, but certainly more money than ever before in his career. Of course, adding “Stanley Cup winning goaltender” to his résumé wouldn’t hurt financially.

Posted by Moq from Denmark on 05/31/10 at 03:26 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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