Like a jilted ex-lover that won’t give you 100% until it’s far too late, Devan Dubnyk has been playing his best hockey for the Edmonton Oilers since the team went out and signed Ilya Bryzgalov to save their sinking ship. Bryzgalov has been in Edmonton for several days now and seems to be ready to go, yet the Oilers will continue to ice Dubnyk tonight when they take on the Florida Panthers.
— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) November 21, 2013
While some fans and pundits are calling for Bryzgalov to get the start, it’s tough to argue with Edmonton’s decision to roll out Dubnyk this evening. The Oilers played their best game of the season when the crushed the Columbus Blue Jackets 7-0 on Tuesday, and it’s always tough to pull the hot hand when he’s pitching shutouts.
Unless you’re the Ottawa Senators, but that’s neither here nor there.
Dubnyk has really picked up his game as of late, and hasn’t had his save percentage slip below .900 in his last four games. That might not be noteworthy to the more sturdy goaltenders in the NHL, but Dubnyk hasn’t been particularly stable for Edmonton this season. That’s why the went out and signed Bryzgalov in the first place.
He’s been relegated to backup duty for the time being, however. It appears that the Oilers will ride out Dubnyk’s hot streak to see where it takes them.
Even if Dubnyk manages to get by the Panthers, things could get interesting for him when Edmonton takes on the Chicago Blackhawks on November 25. That team should supply a bit more of a test than any of the Calgary Flames, Panthers or Blue Jackets, and that may be when we see what Dubnyk is really made of.