Abel to Yzerman

Abel to Yzerman

Ned's Net Tonight

11/30/2022 at 6:48am EST

from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,

Nedeljkovic relieved Husso midway through Monday's 4-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs, making 12 saves. That left Nedeljkovic with a 4.01 GAA and .880 save percentage in seven games.

"We’re all professionals so your routine doesn’t change that much, you always have to be ready to go in," Nedeljkovic said. "If you go in and you are not prepared and you get lit up, it doesn’t look good on you."

Lalonde had planned to start Nedeljkovic this week even before the Leafs doused a four-game winning streak, but hadn't decided which game. With Nedeljkovic making 12 saves against the Leafs, it was natural to give him the next game. That it was the Sabres wasn't really a factor, though it was Nedeljkovic who was in net when the Sabres hung eight on the Wings in a blowout on Halloween. Neither that night, nor when the New York Rangers hunt eight on the Wings on Nov. 10, did Lalonde make a goaltending change during the game. Monday was a season first for that.

"In those two games, where we took it on the chin, versus the Rangers and Buffalo, you could tell we had hit a wall as a team," Lalonde said. "Whether it was the workload coming up to it, whether it was just energy — you could feel that it was going to keep going. I didn’t want to do that to the goalie starting the next game."...

Ideally Nedeljkovic and Husso share more of the workload. Neither goalie has much history as a go-to guy — Nedeljkovic played 23 games for Carolina in the pandemic-shortened 2021 season, and Husso played a career-high 40 games last season with the St. Louis Blues. Balancing goaltenders is something Lalonde is learning to navigate after spending four years as an assistant coach with Tampa Bay, where Andrei Vasilevskiy ruled the pipes.

"I think there’s a lot to that," Lalonde said. "Coming from having a true No. 1, arguably the best goalie in the league in Vasy — it was the balance of playing him versus tiring him out and having enough in the tank for the playoffs. We are in a little different situation here with these two goalies. Neither of them have really played a 65-game schedule or workload in a season. So this is something we’ll have to keep evaluating throughout the year. We were in a fine line with playing Ville six in a row, but the schedule kind of played out a little bit.

more ($)

Paul

Tonight's game on TNT:

Brendan Burke pxp, Darren Pang and Jackie Redmond

Studio- Anson Carter, Rick Tochet, Paul Bissonnette & Liam McHugh

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