As per multiple reports on Friday, including one from Emily Kaplan of ESPN, goaltender Robin Lehner is getting season-ending surgery. The Vegas Golden Knights are already struggling to find their way into the postseason and if they make it, but Lehner is out, this is awful news for a team that is expected to be contenders at the start of the season.
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Golden Knights netminder Robin Lehner to undergo season-ending surgery on knee. https://t.co/ILEmxYA5ab pic.twitter.com/KTJxcAPEBF
— theScore Bet (@theScoreBet) April 22, 2022
Lehner had attempted to battle back from a major knee injury he sustained in Philadelphia on March 8. Ultimately, he was unable to keep playing and now the Golden Knights will look to Logan Thompson, as Laurent Brossoit is also on LTIR.
The reaction in Vegas to the news is not positive. Not only does this hurt the Golden Knights chances to compete, but this news comes on the heels of head coach Pete DeBoer calling out his goaltender after a game versus the New Jersey Devils where Lehner gave up those two goals in the third period. He called Thompson the club’s only consistent goalie, despite the fact Thompson is there on an emergency loan. He also said Lehner was “fresh and healthy” when he was clearly injured.
Robin Lehner Vegas Golden Knights goalie
To Thompson’s credit, he’s allowed two or fewer goals in seven of his last 10 appearances with a .932 save percentage. Can he maintain this? The Golden Knights are a couple of points back of a Wild Card spot with four games remaining in their season.
What Now for Vegas and Lehner?
This season has not gone the way the Golden Knights or Lehner likely envisioned and it will be intriguing to see if the netminder is made available this offseason in a trade. Should the Golden Knights not make the playoffs, changes will be expected. This is a Stanley Cup or bust team and even when they’re near the top of the standings they make changes to the roster. One would expect they’d do more than tinker if things go south.
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