The Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan filed an American Thanksgiving Day notebook this afternoon, suggesting that the Red Wings might want to “go” with Alex Nedeljkovic as their starting goaltender after his spectacular performance against the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday:
Since an opening-night 7-6 overtime loss against Tampa Bay — a game Nedeljkovic, though allowing seven goals, was still one of the Wings’ better players that evening — Nedeljkovic has gradually progressed to a level close to last season’s Calder Trophy finalist-level season he had in Carolina.
Nedeljkovic is now 5-3-3 with a 2.76 goals-against average, and .917 save percentage.
“As the year’s gone on, as a group, we’ve gotten better and better,” Nedeljkovic said. “We can be a little more consistent in some areas. The chemistry is there, and everybody’s comfortable with each other, we are jelling pretty good. Some nights we’re having a little too many miscues and we’re not really as consistent as we’d like to be. Coming into December, we have to kind of tighten up there and really start to bunker down.”
As for the dramatic third-period saves, Nedeljkovic felt there was a factor involved for his teammates as much as the saves were important for him.
“For the guys, it’s just knowing I have their backs,” Nedeljkovic said. “A few of them I was caught out of position. So just giving them confidence they can play their game and swagger, and if something slips up, I can come up with the save.”