WASHINGTON, DC - Off the top of his head, Cam Talbot remembers the last time he didn't start two consecutive games for the Oilers.
"Four years ago," the netminder said Sunday at the MedStar Capitals Iceplex in Washington, DC. "My first year here when (Anders) Nilsson was playing.
"It's been a while."
That was the case this past week when backup Mikko Koskinen got the nod against the Chicago Blackhawks at Rogers Place on Thursday - posting a 40-save 4-0 shutout - then manned the pipes again on Saturday versus the Detroit Red Wings in Edmonton's 4-3 victory.
Video: RAW | Cam Talbot 11.04.18
"When you're a competitor, you want to be in there," Talbot continued. "But after the game that Mikko had against Chicago, it's hard not to put him back in. I understand the coach's decision. What's best for the team is what they're going to do and I understand that."
Both keepers have been able to add victories to the win column in 2018-19. Talbot is 5-4-1 with a 2.81 goals-against average and .904 save percentage. Koskinen is 3-0-0, sporting a .935 save percentage and 2.01 goals-against average to go along with one shutout.
But two seasons ago, Talbot's nights off were few and far between. The goalie was one of the busiest 'tenders in the League, starting 73 games and facing 1,946 shots. He went 42-22-8 with a 2.39 GAA, .919 save percentage and seven goose eggs.
"I knew coming into this season they were going to try to maybe take my number of games down," Talbot, who thinks 60 to 65 appearances this season would be ideal, said. "A couple games off never hurt anybody. You get a chance to work on your game."
Video: EDM@DET: Koskinen sprawls to make terrific glove save
Sitting on the Oilers bench with his mask off in Saturday's tilt versus Detroit, Talbot had a great view of Koskinen's amazing glove save on Martin Frk. He couldn't help but show some love for his fellow guardian on Sunday.
"That was just an unbelievable save," he said. "It got me out of my chair and he got a few stick taps on the bench there."