Hellberg Likely Headed Back to Milwaukee, Hutton to Backup Rinne

This might or might not be overly shocking news, but it looks like one battle at Nashville Predators training camp has already been decided–Carter Hutton, not Magnus Hellberg, will be the backup goaltender to Pekka Rinne with the Nashville Predators. For the development of Hells Bells, it does make sense, but it would be curious to think about who would get the Nashville net in a long term situation if Rinne ever went down for a significant amount of time.

As per usual this situation could change even further if Nashville G.M. David Poile decides to abandon his un-proven backup situation and sign a veteran backstop. This was Poile’s preference last season, and there are certainly plenty of options still available, like there is at just about every position. Damien Brunner, anyone?

That means for the Admirals there is decent chance that Milwaukee will start one of the best, if not the top goaltender in the AHL on most nights. If your squad is trying to make the playoffs for the 12th straight year, having Hellberg is not a bad way to go.

The Admirals certainly would have been quite the one-two punch again had Jeremy Smith stayed, got healthy and returned to his elite form. But alas Smith followed Mark Dekanich to Columbus on a two-way deal. Personally, I hope things work out better for Jeremy there than they did there for Mark. Speaking of Dekanich, he’s currently in the KHL with Medveščak Zagreb.

So Roundtable . . . Do you think Barry Trotz is acting too hastily with his backup goaltending situation? For his development, it makes sense to have Hellberg down for another season in Milwaukee, but what do you think the Predators would do if Rinne went down to injury? Are Poile/Fenton still looking for another netminder?

4 thoughts on “Hellberg Likely Headed Back to Milwaukee, Hutton to Backup Rinne”

  1. Signing a veteran backup is Poile’s preference? Are you nuts?

    Anders Lindback – Zero games of NHL experience when he made the team
    Dan Ellis – One game of NHL experience when he made the team
    Chris Mason and Tomas Vokoun in their first tours of duty? Unknown quantities.

    The backup goalie has pretty much been those four guys through the existence of the franchise. A spot start for a Dekanich here or a Finley there.

    But to say that Poile’s preference is signing a veteran? That’s just simply not a factual statement.

  2. I believe Carter Hutton has earned the opportunity to be the back-up goalie with NHL Nashville. He’s 27 years old and has played 130+ minor league games, It’s time to find out if he can play in the NHL ,I think he can .

    22 year old Magnus Hellberg is a excellent young goalie it won’t be long before he is in the NHL. I think another season with the Admiral’s playing 55 games would be great for him .

  3. Yonkfan,

    I absolutely stand corrected, and am willing to admit when I’m wrong. When I wrote that, I was thinking about the goaltenders who were backups in Nashville and how much experience they now have playing in the NHL. When they were backups, including Pekka’s time in that slot, NHL experience obviously wasn’t their M.O., with the exception of Mason last year, and that did not turn out well.

    I clarified the statement to mention that it was Poile’s preference last season. Thanks for reading and commenting!

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