Sports

Golden Knights Marc-Andre Fleury, Robin Lehner enjoy strong bond

Robin Lehner obtained a present earlier than beginning the Golden Knights’ must-win Game 6 in opposition to the Montreal Canadiens: Pictures from Marc-Andre Fleury’s two daughters.

The two love arts and crafts and writing letters — Fleury’s spouse posted one on Instagram from five-year-old Scarlett in the course of the playoffs — and wished to ship their father’s goalie companion some help earlier than a very powerful recreation of the Knights’ season.

The gesture exemplified the bond that fashioned between Fleury and Lehner this year. There was no controversy, solely cooperation between two goaltenders that shared the Jennings Trophy for the fewest objectives allowed within the common season.

There are questions as as to if the partnership can final. The pair value $12 million in opposition to the wage cap, making them the second-most costly tandem within the NHL behind Montreal’s. The Knights, who’re projected to be $5.26 million below the cap to start out the offseason, may transfer one to usher in extra skaters.

General supervisor Kelly McCrimmon stated Saturday the workforce will focus on the position’s future later within the offseason. Fleury stated he desires he and Lehner to return.

“I hope so,” Fleury stated. “Our relationship grew over the season. We get along very good and obviously as goalies that’s something you strive for.”

Both goaltenders had success alternating begins when each have been wholesome.

Fleury is a finalist for the Vezina Trophy, the award for the season’s greatest goalie, and can discover out if he wins Tuesday. Lehner, a 2019 Vezina finalist, additionally had a strong marketing campaign. He is 16-4-2 with the Knights since being acquired on the 2020 commerce deadline.

Fleury has one year left on his contract, which is price $7 million in opposition to the cap, and stated he hopes to complete his career in Las Vegas. Lehner has 4 years remaining on his take care of a $5 million annual cap hit.

“(Fleury) is as much of a legend for me as he is for you guys,” Lehner stated. “Between intermissions, before games, after games, we’ve been our biggest supporters, both of us.”

It was a luxurious for the Knights to have two No. 1 goaltenders throughout a condensed common season once they have been taking part in virtually every-other night time. It allowed them to maintain each recent.

The workforce should resolve if it could afford to do this once more with a traditional schedule. But there’s little question the 2 goalies made it work.

“It was obviously a blessing this year,” stated coach Pete DeBoer, who referred to as the choice “above his pay grade.” “Next year is a different story. We’re not in those unique circumstances anymore.”

Martinez performed on damaged foot

Defenseman Alec Martinez revealed Saturday he broke his foot with two video games remaining within the common season and performed by means of it.

Despite his damage, Martinez by no means missed a playoff recreation and nonetheless leads the NHL in blocked pictures this postseason by 20. He credited the workforce’s medical doctors and trainers for taking good care of him every day.

“I was getting wheeled around a lot,” Martinez stated.

The 33-year-old now has an opportunity to heal up and take into consideration his future. He’s heading into unrestricted free company and he’s seemingly earned a increase from his earlier $4 million cap hit.

“To be quite honest, I haven’t thought about it that much,” Martinez stated. “We’ll see what happens.”

Contract notes

— Right wing Reilly Smith is about to enter the final season of his contract and stated he hasn’t talked about an extension with the Knights. His present deal carries a $5 million cap hit.

“If I was able to set up a deal myself, it would just be to finish out the rest of my career here in Vegas but I know there’s a lot of pieces and it’s not that simple all the time,” Smith stated. “I’m sure I’ll try to get a little more clarity about that situation this summer.”

— Left wing Mattias Janmark, who was acquired on the commerce deadline, is heading into unrestricted free company. He stated he wasn’t anticipating something to occur contract-wise after being dealt however he’s open to staying.

“I loved every minute of it here,” Janmark stated. “I can see myself playing here longer but it’s a little more complex than that.”

— Center Patrick Brown, who was the Silver Knights’ first captain and performed 12 playoff video games for the Golden Knights, is one other unrestricted free agent. He stated he’d “love to be back” and contribute to the group’s success. He additionally stated his objective was to be an NHL participant.

Contact Ben Gotz at [email protected] Follow @BenSGotz on Twitter.

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