Alexandar Georgiev is this rebuild’s backup
It is time to give the 22-year-old some serious consideration. Alexander Georgiev has filled the shoes of injured backup, Ondrej Pavelec, adequately. He also appears ready to give Hank the time off he needs next season.
Lundqvist is slowing down, even though it may not be obvious to the naked eye. Seven times this season, Lundqvist has fought off 40 or more shots. Sure there are times where he is posting 50 saves on back-to-back nights, but then there are also nights where he will allow a flood of goals in the matter of minutes. Yes, bad defense is the prime issue but age certainly has factored in as well.
For this rebuild, the Rangers need to start looking into someone who can split the time. Georgiev is very young, but also very talented. In his four starts (5 games played), despite going 2-2, he has shown the ability to be a reputable goaltender. He has stopped .930 of shots, while only giving up a respectable 2.73 goals against average.
This season’s playoff hopes and dreams are essentially behind us. it’s time to go through as many options as possible for next season. Split the remaining games between the two goaltenders, and see how well Georgiev does is a must. The rookie has very little experience at the top level of hockey and has a ton to learn, which is why now is the most important time to give him reps.
The remainder of this season should be trial and error, see what works and what doesn’t. New Jersey and Columbus are still 11 and 10 points ahead going into the final weeks of the season, so eyes should now be set to 2018-19.
Benoit Allaire has implemented his regimen into Georgiev early on in his development. When Georgiev was in Hartford, Allaire taught the Bulgarian product key lessons for the early stages of his career.
“Benoit helped me with making adjustments to the game in North America the way he wants his goalies to play,” Georgiev said, according to NHL.com. “I’m learning to be more sharp with the passes and being more patient and back home.”
Lundqvist has been a rock and has shown that, despite his growing age, his skill and tenacity is still very present. Give “The King” a breather, and focus on this talented young group that will be the next era of New York Rangers hockey.
Alexandar Georgiev should be a leading candidate as the backup goaltender for the foreseeable future.