New York Rangers coach David Quinn said Thursday that rookie goaltender Igor Shesterkin has already proved himself as the team's top option between the pipes.
"Yes. Right now, that is the situation we're in, because of his play, for sure," Quinn told reporters Thursday afternoon when asked if the rookie has become the Rangers' No. 1 goalie.
Shesterkin, 24, debuted on Jan. 7 and has made seven starts, going 6-1 with a 2.18 goals-against average and .941 save percentage. According to NHL Stats and Information, he's the first NHL goaltender (since saves were first tracked in 1955-56) to post three 40-save wins in his first seven career appearances.
The Russian rookie has won four straight starts, including three of the team's last four games, before Alexandar Georgiev got the nod in Thursday night's game at Minnesota. Shesterkin is dealing with a minor ankle injury suffered Tuesday night against Winnipeg and is day-to-day, Quinn said.
Quinn had been using a rotation of Shesterkin, Georgiev and longtime star Henrik Lundqvist, but he plans to lean on Shesterkin moving forward.
"I think when you get three goalies and you're in the situation we were in, you're a bit sensitive to everybody," Quinn said. "You want to give everybody an opportunity and see how this thing unfolds. I thought everybody had an ample opportunity, and everybody had a chance to state their case. I just felt that Igor had made the most impact."
Lundqvist, who turns 38 in March, is 10-11-3 with a 3.12 GAA and .907 save percentage on the season, roughly in line with a 2018-19 campaign that ranked as the least productive of his decorated career. He has started just three times since Shesterkin debuted.
Georgiev, 24, entered Thursday at 12-11-1 with a 3.12 GAA and .908 save percentage in his second season.
--Field Level Media