Now I know a lot of people have been jumping down my throat about this the last week or so on other boards and what not because I have been insisting that MAF should not get his job back no matter how good he plays or looks or anything for that matter because Ty Conklin has played his way into that number 1 goalie position on this team in the 20 games he has played and unless at this point he completely implodes the rest of the way which I dont think will happen he needs to be the guy going into the playoffs. I say this mainly because Conklin has a great goaltending mentality and veteran presence in net to him where in contrast Fleury really does not yet, especially whenever he gets down in games like 1-0 2-0 such as last night with Boston to where he is not gonna let up and give up that backbreaking goal, and he is going to continually keep the Penguins in the games and give them a chance to win. This Pens team is just soo good at coming back and has such great character and Conklin knows this and he plays better I think because of it. We have seen that consistently with Conklin pretty much all 20 games he has started in net for the Penguins, as opposed to Fleury in the past where he gives up 1 or 2 goals and needs to keep that 3rd or 4th one out of the cage he rarely does it. I mean if Conklin had not been in net last night for as bad as the Pens played in that first period it could have easily been 4-0 5-0 and that right there is the difference between Conklin and Fleury. I just feel in a 7 game series in the playoffs with the way Conklin has played in net consistently this season game in and game out and how he responds to adversity with key saves when the game is tied or when the Penguins are down a goal or 2 that the Penguins will be very very tough to beat in a 7 game series with Conklin in net playing like he is as opposed to Fleury. Plus, there are what 6 weeks or so left in this season and this is just no time for this Pens team to be having a goalie competition and for the teams chemistry or physchi to get messed with. Because if Fleury does indeed get this job back when he really hasnt earned it from Conklin Im telling you it could cause a lot of problems potentially in the locker room with the guys who are now used to playing in front of Conklin in the net.
The bottom line with this whole situation is decide it and figure it out in training camp next year and unless Conklin completely and I mean completely implodes down the stretch here you dont even remotely consider making Fleury the number 1 goaltender under any circumstances period. I dont care about Fleury's pedigree or if he was a number 1 pick or anything it has nothing to do with him taking the job back from Conklin this season. Ive seen enough of Conklin in net this season to know and believe in my mind that he is capable of carrying this team in the playoffs for the rest of this season and we just do not need to have a goaltending competition when Fleury comes back. Im telling you right now if Therrien would dare pull Conklin when he is still playing great in favor of Fleury and Fleury starts losing games or god forbid the Pens would go out in the first round of the playoffs he is going to take a lot of heat for it. The best thing for MT to do right now with the goaltending situation much like the first line with Gino Malone and Sykora with the way its been clicking since Sid went down is if it aint broke dont fix it period.