New Jersey Devils Backup Goalie Johan Hedberg Fighting for His Job and NHL Career

By Mark Donatiello
Ed Mulholland – US PRESSWIRE

Johan Hedberg is mired in a horrible slump at the worst possible time.  The New Jersey Devils have lost four of their last five games, while Moose has allowed 14 goals in his last three starts.  With Martin Brodeur on IR and Keith Kinkaid called up to be Hedberg’s backup, it’s quite possible that Johan Hedberg could be playing for his job this week, and ultimately, his career.

Johan Hedberg started the season on an incredible run, allowing just two goals through his first three starts.  Since then, however, he has completely fallen apart.  Allowing multiple series of quick goals to put games away, Johan Hedberg has singlehandedly taken the New Jersey Devils out of games with his ineffective play of late.

Keith Kinkaid may be the future of New Jersey Devils goaltending when Martin Brodeur decides to step away from hockey.  With the youngster nipping at Hedberg’s weathered heels, the next few games could be incredibly important for Moose.  If he continues to play poorly and Kinkaid takes advantage of his opportunity in the NHL, the New Jersey Devils may be forced to give Kinkaid a chance to play.  When Martin Brodeur is healthy, there will only be room for one more goalie.

If Kinkaid outplays Johan Hedberg, or Hedberg’s horrendous play continues, the New Jersey Devils will be forced to make a move.  There is simply no room on the NHL roster for a goalie that can’t keep fewer than four goals out of the net each night.  At his age, being removed as the backup goaltender could mean the end of a fantastic career as a backup goalie, role player, and leader.

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