The Nashville Predators thought they were going to have to stay afloat without Pekka Rinne for a month, tops. The goalie was placed on the IR after it was revealed that he was battling an infection in his hip. A recent update by Darren Dreger has the goalie out until at least Christmas time has he fights and recovers from a very serious issue with an E. Coli infection.
The relevant segment begins at the 2:28 mark or so.
Nashville didn’t respond to the initial news of Rinne’s injury with any sort of knee-jerk reaction, and seemed comfortable rolling with Carter Hutton for the time being. An eight-week time frame is very different from a month though, especially if the goalie isn’t able to stay in shape over the course of his recovery.
You hear about rink rust setting in after two or three days, so two months away from the rink could sideline Rinne for much longer than originally expected.
Does that mean that the Predators are suddenly in the market for a stopgap in net? They can get line in line behind the Carolina Hurricanes, who are in a mildly similar situation with both Cam Ward and Anton Khudobin on the shelf for at least another few weeks. There are several interesting options in play, but none of them are going to come cheaply.
The Anaheim Ducks and St. Louis Blues have excess goalies, but they aren’t going to simply trade them away from nothing. Are the Predators willing to deal away futures just to keep this season on the rails? That could all be left up to Hutton and his level of play. The Minnesota Wild dodged a bullet earlier this season when Josh Harding was able to step in and play brilliantly in relief of an injured Niklas Backstrom.
Could a similar situation develop in Nashville with Hutton seizing the chance to be the hero for the next few months? Only time will tell.
We’ll keep you posted if there are any contrary reports to that of Dreger, but at the moment it’s just bad news for the Preds.