With Jimmy Howard sidelined for a few games with a finger injury, the Red Wings thought they had a reliable backup in Ty Conklin. However, he has been struggling all season and the Wings had to bring up Joey MacDonald.
MacDonald has played well in the three games that he has played even though the Wings are only 1-1-1 in those games. They won with him in net tonight as they defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-2, to extended their home winning streak to 18 games.
But here’s the situation: MacDonald can serve as a decent back-up for the rest of the season. The question is though what do the Wings do with Ty Conklin and do they make a trade for an experienced back-up in case they need one for the playoffs?
Here is the reason I think they need to sign or trade for someone:
According to Elias Sports Bureau: The Red Wings, playing their second straight game without injured goaltender Jimmy Howard, were beaten by the Coyotes, 3-1. Over the last three seasons the Red Wings are 106-44-18 in games that Jimmy Howard has started, but only 20-22-8 when one of his backups (Chris Osgood, Ty Conklin or Joey MacDonald) has gotten the call.
That makes me cringe when I think about that. So if I was Ken Holland I would make a deal for a back-up. However, in a recent Detroit Free Press article, Holland gave his thoughts on the situation.
We’re trying to compete for the Stanley Cup, and given the way our team has played, we think we look like a playoff team,” Holland said. “I don’t worry about the East. In the West, we’re ahead of Vancouver, we’re ahead of Chicago. We’re in the top five in goals scored. We’ve improved defensively from last season — we’re in the top 10, just outside the top five.
“We like our team. We also know we’re in a very deep conference. Anybody that makes the playoffs can go for a run.”
Holland said he’s had “some conversations” with colleagues, but “nothing is imminent.”
I would say that he is looking but I wouldn’t get my hopes up of a trade though. But then again if MacDonald plays like he has and Howard returns healthy, they won’t have to worry. If that is the case, the Wings would have to get rid of Conklin, which would be a big hit salary wise but might be the best thing to do.