DeSmith stopped 12 of 13 shots after replacing Matt Murray early in the second period of Saturday's 5-1 loss to the Blues. The only goal the 27-year-old gave up came on the power play. DeSmith is dialed in right now -- he was coming off a shutout of the Sabres on Thursday -- and while Murray's recent play has been mostly sharp as well, the Penguins should be confident they can give their backup a little more work down the stretch if they want to try and get Murray some extra rest before the playoffs.
DeSmith made 26 saves in Thursday's 5-0 win over Buffalo for his third shutout of 2018-19. DeSmith is the third straight netminder to blank the Sabres. The Penguins backup will see his record move to 15-11-5 following Thursday's win, to go along with a 2.77 GAA and .916 save percentage. DeSmith hadn't played since Feb. 21, but he could find himself back in net over the weekend, as Pittsburgh gets set to play a back-to-back with games Saturday and Sunday.
DeSmith will be between the pipes against the Sabres on the road Thursday. DeSmith will be making his first appearance in goal since Feb. 21 versus San Jose. Coach Mike Sullivan went with starter Matt Murray in nine straight, including a pair of back-to-backs, but will finally give the No. 1 a night off. With the Penguins' playoff spot far from clinched, DeSmith could find himself watching more often than not down the stretch.
DeSmith stopped 29 of 33 shots in Thursday's 4-0 loss to the Sharks. All four goals against DeSmith came on special teams -- three with the Sharks on the power play and one with San Jose shorthanded. San Jose put this one away early with a trio of first-period goals, and Pittsburgh's offense never showed up to bail DeSmith out.
DeSmith will work in the home crease Thursday against the Sharks, Josh Getzoff of PensTV reports. DeSmith has seen a steep decline in his play between the pipes recently, letting in three or more goals in seven of his last eight appearances and all of his last seven starts. Over that span, he owns a lackluster 4.13 GAA and .882 save percentage, though he's fared slightly better (3.64 GAA and .901 save percentage) on home ice. Next up is a Sharks club that leads the league in road scoring (3.65 goals per game) and ranks second in scoring during February, averaging four goals.
Last 7 Games
|3 Year Avg||14||6||4||1||700||28||1||2.40||2||71.1|