Is There a Goalie Issue in Detroit?

Red Wings Goalie Problem? Ville Husso in a Red Wings Jersey

The Detroit Red Wings are 8-5-2 to start the season. They started red hot, going 5-1-0 and winning five straight games after dropping the first game of the season, and they outscored their opponents 30-15; since then, they have gone 3-4-2 and have been outscored 34-25. So far this season, they have allowed four goals or more in eight of their first 15 games and despite outscoring their opponents 55-49 through 15 games, they are allowing an average of 3.3 goals a game. In the minors, it’s a little bit of the same as their AHL affiliate. The Grand Rapids Griffins have played in ten games, are 3-5-1-1, and have lost seven of their last eight games since starting 2-0-0-0. The Griffins are being outscored 34-22 this season, allowing 3.4 goals a game. In the ECHL, their affiliate, the Toledo Walleye, has played in seven games and are 5-1-1-0 to start the season but have given up 24 goals in those seven games, which means they are allowing 3.4 goals a game, and they have given up four goals or more in their last three straight games. So, let’s look at the goalies within the organization.

Detroit Red Wings Goalies

Ville Husso

Husso hasn’t looked right since his hip injury, and this season, he has made ten starts, going 6-3-1 with a 3.61 GAA and an .885 save percentage; he hasn’t recorded a shutout yet. In correlation, in his first ten starts last season, Husso went 5-2-3 with a .918 save percentage, and although his goals against was higher because of a game where he allowed eight goals, he still had two shutouts to that point.

James Reimer

Reimer has been somewhat reliable for the Red Wings as he has started the season 2-2-1, with the overtime loss coming in his most recent game against Montreal, in which he cost himself drawing a holding the stick penalty, which gave Montreal a power play. They found the back of the net to win the game. Reimer has a 1.80 GAA, which ranks third in the NHL entering play on Tuesday night, and he has a .933, which ranks fifth in the league in the NHL, but do you give the net to Reimer and trust him as your number one right now until something changes?

Alex Lyon

Lyon has yet to play a game for Detroit this season, but Red Wings head coach Derek LaLonde has said he wanted to get him in. Whether that’s in the AHL or NHL remains to be seen, but by speculation, it’ll have to be NHL as it was probably originally planned to go to the AHL. However, he would have been placed on waivers, and Detroit was worried Edmonton or San Jose may have claimed him as they need goaltending help. Expect Lyon to get a start soon, as he has been active as a backup for Husso some nights. Lyon played in 15 regular season games for the Florida Panthers last season, and he went 9-4-2 with a 2.89 GAA and a .912 save percentage.

Sebastian Cossa

Cossa is in Grand Rapids this season and is 1-2-2 with a 3.22 GAA and a .899 save percentage. He had great success in 2022-23 in Toledo, going 26-16-1 with a 2.56 GAA and a .913 save percentage, but when he got to Grand Rapids last season, he went 1-1-0 with a 5.57 GAA and a .783 save percentage. The Red Wings took Cossa with the 15th overall pick in the 2021 draft over Jesper Wallstedt, who was 1A and 1B with Cossa. Wallstedt has been called up to the NHL for the Minnesota Wild; he is 6-2-0 with a .932 save percentage and a 2.01 GAA this season in the AHL.

Michael Hutchinson

Hutchinson has appeared in five games, and he’s gone 2-3-0 with a 2.82 GAA and a .907 save percentage after the Red Wings signed him to a PTO, and he shares time with Cossa in net. Don’t expect to see Hutchinson in Detroit this season.

Jan Bednar

The Red Wings drafted Bedna in the same draft as Cossa, and he made his debut for the Red Wings organization last season making three appearances going 1-1-0 with a .901 save percentage and a 3.01 GAA. He’s had better success this season, going 3-0-0 with a 3.00 GAA; his save percentage has dropped a little with a .892 this season. I wouldn’t be surprised if he continues playing the way he has; he may be up with Cossa in Grand Rapids at some point this season and maybe competing for the starting job with the Griffins.

John Lethemon

Lethemon signed as a free agent with the Red Wings and is unlikely to move up. Last season, he struggled in Grand Rapids, going 1-6-2 with a .878 save percentage and a 3.88 GAA. He shared the net with Sebastian Cossa in Toledo going 18-1-3 with a .930 save percentage and 1.99 GAA however this season in his four games he is 2-1-1 with a .845 save percentage and a 3.77 GAA.

Trey Augustine

Augustine is in his first season and far from joining the Red Wings and even the organization after being drafted 41st overall in the 2023 Draft. This season, though, he’s worth looking at for the future as he is 7-2-1 in 11 games at Michigan State, and he has a .909 save percentage and a 3.18 GAA.

Bottom Line:

It’s been said Husso will play 50+ games this season, but could that hip still bother him? The Red Wings also still have depth with Reimer and Lyon, and this week they play back-to-back in Sweden, so you’ll see two of the goalies, this would be an excellent time to get Lyon in there and see what you have, and if things don’t go right then you could place him on waivers and see if he clears and send him to Grand Rapids to get playing time but if does go well then you have another option to help you through the marathon of an 82 game season and you don’t have to overwork Husso if he is injured. The idea of having Bednar and Cossa sharing the net at some point in Grand Rapids is something to be excited about, as both guys could push each other to be better and could benefit Detroit in the future. It’s not time to panic yet, but it’s getting there on what may happen because you need a goaltender to get you to the Stanley Cup playoff for the first time since 2015-16.

We Got The Jack Inside The Rink

In episode 8 of the Inside The Rink podcast, Matty and Smitty are joined by new co-host Conrad Jack. After the long hiatus, we get back to hockey with a PACKED episode!Matt Rempe & the Devils vs. Rangers Line BrawlCould the Vancouver Canucks squander a playoff opportunity? Have the Winnipeg Jets finally figured out their lines?Flyers Head Coach John Tortorella is a sound byte MACHINEOvechkin is on his way to 895, Who is next?McDavid joins elite company with 100 Assists in a seasonRyan Hartman was suspended 3 Games, was it worth 3 games??Can Auston Matthews hit 70 Goals this season?The Eastern Conference Wild Card race is heating up, who lands the two playoff berths?For all of your hockey news and more from the show, visit us at insidetherink.com and watch us on YouTube! How to support us and our sponsors:TicketmasterColumbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITR
  1. We Got The Jack
  2. Episode 7. Player Safety First!
  3. Episode 6. Early Trade Season
  4. Episode 5. Longing For The Chiarelli Years
  5. Episode 4. Ottawa’s On Fire

CJ

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