What Does Matt Murray's Injury Mean For The Penguins?
The 2016-17 NHL season is just around the corner, with the pre-season already upon us. Shortly after team North America was eliminated from the World Cup of Hockey, is was revealed that goaltender Matt Murray had broken his hand in a 4-3 loss to team Russia. Thankfully, he won't need considerable time to recover with his timeline only being 3-6 weeks. Due to this injury, it would make sense that the Penguins starting goalie will most likely be Marc-Andre Fluery with Tristan Jarry backing him up as the season starts up.
That may seem like a somewhat weak tandem compared to a duo of Fleury and Murray, but the Penguins do not need amazing goaltending to get off on the right foot and get into the playoffs. Look no further than the 2015-16 Dallas Stars for proof of this. The Stars ranked 24th league wide in team save percentage with .904% and landed at 20th in goals against per game with 2.78. All that the Penguins need out of Fleury and Jarry is average goaltending and they will surely dash right back into the playoff race.
It is always wise to keep in mind the type of injury a player has suffered and whether it will hinder them in the future. A serious concussion or maybe a pulled groin would have the potential to seriously derail Murray as well as his development, but thankfully that is not what has happened here. With only a minor injury of a broken hand, I believe it's reasonable to doubt that this injury will hurt the player or the team in the future, as long as Murray gives himself an ample amount of time to heal up and does not rush himself back into action. If his recovery goes smoothly, there is no reason his current injury should be reoccurring.
This injury could possibly even be considered a blessing in disguise for the Penguins. If Marc-Andre Fleury plays exceptionally well in Murray's absence, it could do wonders for his trade value. Which in return will cause a better haul of picks or players when Pittsburgh eventually decides to trade him this upcoming season.
Ultimately, the injury to Matt Murray should not really make that much of an impact on Pittsburgh's season. Fleury is still a very capable goaltender that is more than ready to log the majority of the minutes during Murray's vacancy, with a young Tristan Jarry just waiting to make the jump to the NHL. The injury itself is not even worth sweating, let alone who will be in net. Who knows, maybe Matt Murray will make a full recovery before puck drop against Washington on October 13th, but just in case he doesn't, the Pittsburgh Penguins will be just fine until he returns to the crease.