Raanta was solid in his role of understudy to Henrik Lundqvist after being acquired from the Blackhawks two seasons ago. Last year he appeared in a career-high 30 games and posted a better goals-against average (2.26) and save percentage (.922) than Lundqvist.
Gorton, though, believes he will be able to find suitable replacements for Stepan and Raanta before the start of next season.
Obviously, we have money now, and my phone rings a little more often now that we have more cap space, he joked. I think there is a trade market, a big market out there right now, a lot of names. And in free agency there’s a lot of names, too. We look at this as an opportunity with the draft, free agency, the trade market to change things up a little bit.
The Rangers now have roughly $20 million in cap space. They also have two first-round selections in this year’s draft, as well as a highly skilled young defenseman to add to their core group on the blue line next season.
Scott Wilson scored the Penguins’ third goal with 3:13 gone in the third and Evgeni Malkin made it 4-1 just 15 seconds later, chasing Rinne, who has allowed eight goals on 36 shots in the first Cup Final of his career. The 34-year-old veteran was having a historic postseason before this series, but something clearly has him shaken.
It’s a major missed opportunity for the underdog Preds, who had the Penguins dead to rights in Game 1. Pittsburgh’s power play went 0 for 7 Wednesday and stars Malkin and Sidney Crosby combined for zero shots and only three attempts in the first two periods, yet Nashville had only one goal to show for it.
Historically, the odds are against the Predators. The team that takes a 2-0 lead in the Cup Final is 45-5 all time.