The Pittsburgh Penguins continue to support goalie Matt Murray despite his struggles this season, leading the team to temporarily usurp him for Casey DeSmith.
Despite the downward fall, Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan believes that the time off the ice will help him focus on work with goaltending coach Mike Buckley, and the team is maintaining both their faith and their confidence that Murray can return to form.
“I think Matt’s mental toughness and the experiences that he’s gone through, he can certainly draw on and help him get to where we all know he’s capable of being,” Sullivan said (h/t NHL.com). “Right now, he’s got an opportunity to spend some time with [Buckley] and work on some of the aspects of his game that we think can help him improve. He can build his confidence.
“This by no means diminishes our faith and our trust in Matt Murray. We know he’s a real good goalie. He’s an accomplished goalie.”
DeSmith understands his role, as backup.
“That’s my job. Just to show up when I get the chance,” DeSmith said. “I think so far, I’ve given the team a chance to win when I’ve played. I take pride in that.”
Murray is 4-4-1 with a 3.87 GAA, .886 save percentage and one shutout in nine starts for Pittsburgh this season.