The Vancouver Canuck’s General Manager Jim Benning, spoke with TSN 1040 about the season in Vancouver and his plans for the team’s future. Particularly between the pipes.
Jacob Markstrom is pegged to take over the goaltending duties for Vancouver, but a season plagued by injuries and a red-hot Ryan Miller relegated Markstrom to back-up status. All this happened before he was sidelined for the remainder of the season, requiring a knee surgery.
“Down the stretch here we wanted to get him in more games, and just see what he could do, so it’s disappointing” Benning said of his young injured goalie Markstom who will undergo surgery for a damaged meniscus in his knee. The Swedish goalie has apparently been struggling with the injury since early 2017.
Benning confirmed that the team’s strategy was to test Markstrom in more and more games this season to see if he was ready to be the Canuck’s number one goalie.
“What ended up happening is he got off to a real good start. Then he had a minor injury before Christmas, then he got sick…I think that set him back a bit”. Benning added, “We have a lot of confidence in him as a goalie, and we think he has the skillset to be a number one goalie moving forward”.
Markstrom played 25 games this season, posting a 2.63 GGA and a 0.910 save-percentage. Veteran netminder Ryan Miller started 51 games with a 2.78 GGA and a save-percentage of 0.915.
Miller will be UFA at the end of the season. Benning confirmed he will be in discussions with Miller’s agent regarding resigning the dependable backstop at the end of the season.