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LEHTONEN TO CAMPBELL: BIG WEEK FOR STARS GOALIES
Posted By Travis Currie On Jan 1 2012 @ 5:24 pm In Dallas Stars | No Comments
An injury to Kari Lehtonen lead to a sort of musical chairs for Stars goalies, and the man standing without a spot in the lineup when the music stopped is Andrew Raycroft.
Young Richard Bachman was brought up from Texas to backup Raycroft, but after Raycroft struggled in back to back games Bachman was given his shot. He went on to win three in a row on the road, including a 1-0 shutout in New York , and Raycroft’s fate was sealed. With Lehtonen returning from injury, Raycroft was placed on waivers and after clearing, has been demoted to the Texas Stars.
Meanwhile, Stars number one pick in 2010 Jack Campbell has been a focus in the World Junior tournament in Alberta. His USA squad was one of the favorites going in and Campbell was expected to come up big being this is his third year playing in the tournament. It didn’t quite work out that way and Campbell’s US squad now finds themselves on the outside looking in, finishing out of the top three in their pool and ineligible for a medal.
As a goalie you believe you should stop every shot, but the fact is the US just gave up too many in-close chances and odd man rushes to give themselves, and especially their goalies, a chance. Against both the Czech Republic and Canada, the US hung Campbell out to dry several times and the team just wasn’t efficient enough in the offensive zone, despite firing more than 50 shots at the Czechs. Against Canada, they pretty much let the team in red have their way with Campbell in the first and found themselves down 3-0. Campbell was as stellar as you could expect your goalie to be though and held the Canadians off the score sheet the rest of the way. The US fired two past Canada goalie Scott Wedgewood but it was just too little too late.
With Andrew Raycroft’s contract up at the end of the year, a spot will be opening up somewhere in the Stars organization. It’s a good bet that management would like Campbell to gain pro experience down in Texas before he makes the jump to the NHL, but if he keeps battling, especially the way he did against the Canadians, he’s sure to at least challenge Richard Bachman and Tyler Beskorowany and give us all assurance that the goal tending future of the Stars is very bright.
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