Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 07/23/09 at 11:59 AM ET
from John Kreiser of NHL.com,
Here’s a look at a player from each of the 15 teams in the Western Conference under pressure to perform as soon as the puck drops:
Jonas Hiller, Anaheim—Hiller took the No. 1 goaltending job from Jean-Sebastien Giguere and was superb for the Ducks down the stretch and in the playoffs, leading them to a first-round upset of Presidents’ Trophy winner San Jose and nearly knocking off Detroit. Now it’s up to the 27-year-old to prove he’s capable of being a full-time starter at the NHL level on a team from which big things are expected.
Chris Osgood, Detroit—Osgood atoned for the worst regular season of his career with a superb showing in the playoffs, getting the Wings to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final. With backup Ty Conklin gone to St. Louis after a superb season in Detroit, the Red Wings can’t afford to have Osgood struggle again—especially because there’s no proven backup behind him this time.
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About Kukla's Korner Hockey
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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