Peter Laviolette continued his mind games yesterday with the media. He somehow announced his starting goaltender without ever saying his name.
First, the Flyers coach asked reporters who was starting for Chicago. When the reply was Antti Niemi, Laviolette responded: “Our goaltender has the best numbers in the playoffs. I didn’t think I had to announce it.”
Does that mean Michael Leighton will be in net?
“I don’t comment on lineups or goaltenders,” Laviolette said.
Of course, the numbers for Leighton are staggering. He holds a playoff-best 2.34 goals-against average with three shutouts. In six home games — and Game 6 is here at the Wachovia Center — Leighton is 6-0 with a 1.48 GAA. He’s also responded to two prior benchings by stopping 41-of-44 combined shots in his following two starts.
“You get mad when you get pulled,” Leighton said. “Do you want to get back out there and prove it was a fluke? That’s what I want to do. I want to get back in there and get the support of the team back and help our team.”