Marc-Andre Fleury remains one popular fan favourite player in the history of the Pittsburgh Penguins, and while he is now the star goalie for the Vegas Golden Knights, it seems like he will always be welcomed by the team that selected in the first round, first overall back in the 2003 National Hockey League entry draft. Fleury and the Golden Knights will be in town on Thursday, and it will be the only chance Pittsburgh fans get to see the franchise icon former goalie play in Western Pennsylvania all year.
However, the busy schedule of Vegas will force to look at Fleury on the bench, and not in the crease... Thursday will be the third game in four days for the Golden Knights, who played Monday losing a 4-2 afternoon matinee game at the hands of the Buffalo Sabres. Fleury gave up four goals on just 17 shots and is looking for a night off. Fleury is set to be in between the pipes on Saturday, when fans get to see the Stanley Cup Final rematch against the Capitals in Washington. Thursday will be the fourth game in six days for them as well.
Fleury will therefore be the backup goalie for Malcolm Subban in Pittsburgh.
While Fleury is possibly disappointed to be sitting on the bench for his return to Pittsburgh, he used his well known sense of humour and charisma to hide his feelings. When asked by reporters on how he felt about sitting Thursday's night game against the Penguins, Fleury mocked his own career with the Pens.
Reporter: "Will it be weird to sit on the bench in Pittsburgh?
Fleury:" Well... I sat there a bunch."
Regardless of the decision by head coach Gerrard Gellant, Fleury does not seem to be too concerned about it. Fleury holds a 1-2 record with a 3.92 GAA and .841%. He’ll look to bounce back this week, however it will not take place against his former teammates on Thursday.
The Golden Knights won't be the only ones starting the game without their star goalie, as the Penguins announced on Wednesday that Matt Murray is once again dealing with concussion symptoms. This is the third time in his NHL career the 24-year-old Murray has been diagnosed with one, his second concussion in eight months. And to be honest, the young netminder has struggled since the 2018-19 season started, allowing 13 goals so far against two teams.