Nashville Predators fans have been expecting plenty of change after the team was swept by the Colorado Avalanche in the first round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Current GM David Poile and Head Coach John Hynes held a press conference this past Thursday. Change will be coming. Although, it may not be to the level that many fans would prefer. A big shift will be a change at the backup goalie spot on the roster.
David Rittich will not return. Accordingly, Connor Ingram steps into the spotlight as the most likely option to begin next season as the backup net-minder.
#Preds GM David Poile says Nashville will have a different backup goalie next season. Poile compliments goaltender Connor Ingram’s play in the chances he had this season.
— Brooks Bratten (@brooksbratten) May 19, 2022
Rittich struggled in his single season with the Preds. In 17 games played, he had a 3.57 GAA and a .886 save percentage. It was easily his worst statistical season of his career so far. There was a reason that the team started Saros so often and relied on him so heavily throughout the entire year. We saw the stark difference in goaltending in the postseason. Although, goalie play was just one of many issues that led to the Predators getting swept. They struggled in every facet.
Fans may clamor for Yaroslav Askarov to begin next year with the Preds, but that seems less likely right now. No one can rule out him playing a role at some point during the season, though. No one should doubt that Ingram does deserve his change to backup Saros, either.
As I said back in Fall of 2021, we should see him be the starter in Milwaukee next season while Connor Ingram backs up Juuse Saros at the NHL level. https://t.co/ZUCZoJxYe8
— Jeremy Gover (@ItsGovertime) May 16, 2022
Backup goalie will be one of the many transformations for the Nashville Predators roster in 2023.