Peter Laviolette was quick to deny any sort of goaltending controversy with his club. The Nashville Predators head coach spoke on the subject after Wednesday’s practice, emphasizing that everyone on the team plays a part in whether or not the team wins or loses, no matter if it’s Pekka Rinne or Carter Hutton between the pipes.
“There are always things that we can do better in front of both of our goaltenders and we look at that on a daily basis, but we need all of our guys to play a season to get through a season; that’s why it’s a team sport,” Laviolette said. “At times Carter has been good, at times Pekka has been good, at times our team has been good and at times we’ve all needed to be a little bit better.”
Both Rinne and Hutton, who are often each other’s biggest supporter on and off the ice, know what’s expected of them with 25 games to go in the regular season and the Preds currently in possession of a Wild Card spot in the Western Conference.
“When I get a chance to play, I play,” Hutton said. “We have a really good team, and we’re going to make a push here, no matter who’s in net.”
“Being a goalie, it’s easy to see the results and it’s easy to see the scoreboard,” Rinne said. “You go out there and at the end of the 60 minutes, you look at the board and you’ve given up three or four goals and lost a game, it doesn’t feel good. Confidence is a huge thing and it’s a skill to keep it at an even level. It’s going to go up and down throughout the season.
“I’ve played enough hockey where I know the only way through it is through hard work and to believe in yourself and your teammates. At the end of the day, being a goalie is sometimes a lonely position, but it’s still a team game it goes hand in hand with your teammates.”