Down on the farm
Keith Kinkaid is having a decent year with the Hartford Wolf Pack posting a .909% save percentage with 18 wins in 26 games. But despite a 29 save performance for the Rangers this season, his save percentage in the NHL has been below the .900% mark since the 2017-18 season. Unless trade deadline transactions dictate otherwise, Kinkaid, with 167 games of NHL experience, is the next man up should the Rangers goaltending situation require it.
Who are the pups of the pack
Adam Huska (24 years old) may have a .917% save percentage, but only has seven wins in 19 games while splitting time with Kinkaid. He has improved with a 5-2-2 record in his last nine starts while Kinkaid has slumped, losing four of his last six.
Tyler Wall (24 Years old), though having had a successful collegiate career has not found that level of success as a pro. He has posted a .900% save percentage at the ECHL and only .867% with the Wolf Pack. He has six wins in a combined 13 games played.
Former second round pick Olof Lindbom (21 years old) has had a rough time with injuries and is currently patrolling the crease for Kristianstads IK in Sweden’s second tier league. He has a .900% save percentage and 10 wins in 27 games this season.
Dylan Garand (19 years old) has had a wonderful career in the WHL and has been chosen to represent Canada in the 2021 and 2022 Under 20 World Junior Championships. While he has a ton of potential, he will need seasoning at the pro level before looking to make it to the Rangers’ NHL roster.
Will the backup please stand up
The Rangers need two specific things from their backup. The ability to perform well in spot starts as well as being able to step in should Shesterkin require extended rest. Within the organization, as it stands now, no one goaltender is the right fit. However, the Rangers should think hard before moving on from Georgiev at the deadline. The more he plays, the more opportunity he can be revived back into effectiveness and be the organizations safety net through the playoffs.
Chris Drury should also shake the trade tree for a veteran backup, and if a better option presents itself, go for it. That said, it is on Coach Gallant to begin working Georgiev into more games. He needs to get into a rhythm to be an option in net. Further, getting him back to form will only raise his asset value.
The fact that Gallant started Georgiev in net against Anaheim has to be seen as a positive move if he did it to get Shesterkin some more rest. It could also be to get him some work so that they can showcase him before the trade deadline if there is any interest.
Regardless of how the remainder of the season plays out, it is a mathematical cap certainty that he will be dealt before next season. These last games may determine how much they get back in return for him.