With his stellar performance to start the season (a 7-2-0 record, .931 save percentage, 1.89 goals against average, and three shutouts), it seemed inevitable that the Penguins would re-sign Marc-Andre Fleury. While some Penguins fans pointed to Fleury’s off-season meltdowns as reason to trade him, others said that Fleury showed marked improvement since being coached by Mike Bales and seeing a sports psychologist, and that the Penguins’ loss in the playoffs last year was largely the result of a lack of offensive prowess, not a goaltending issue.
Furthermore, Penguins fans on both sides of the argument had to face the grim reality of the current goalie market, which is extremely barren. A goaltender of Fleury’s caliber or an upgrade who is eligible for hire simply doesn’t exist, and certainly not at a price the Penguins could pay. Fleury stood to gain a large amount of money on the open market if the Penguins didn’t make their move – either to trade or re-sign him.