The Edmonton Oilers Twitter account announced this afternoon that Nikolai Khabibulin will start against the Chicago Blackhawks:
Khabibulin has started the season well,allowing just 7 goals on 120 shots.
#35 / Goalie / Edmonton Oilers
Jan 13, 1973
|2012 - Nikolai Khabibulin||4||222||2||2||7||1.89||120||113||.942||0|
The start isn't logical, according to Tyler Dellow:
All of which is to say, I tend to think that it’s not unreasonable to think that Edmonton, which is a fringe playoff team with one goalie who we have every reason to think is significantly better than the other, would start that goalie as much as NHL coaches have deemed wise in the past. Absent injury, that number seems to be north of 40, with the backup goaltender almost exclusively starting in back to back situations.
Edmonton Coach Ralph Krueger is more riverboat gambler than tactian, and will ride his hot hand. The move is certainly drawing rave reviews from Todd Pipella:
@edmontonoilers makes sense to start Khabi!!! Go Oilers!!— Todd Pipella (@Toddpipella) February 25, 2013