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Golden Knights name starting goalie for Game 6 vs. Canucks

Updated September 3, 2020 - 6:32 pm

Robin Lehner will make his second consecutive start as the Golden Knights attempt to end their second-round series against the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday night at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta.

Vancouver will turn to Thatcher Demko in Game 6 for the second straight game. The 24-year-old rookie was brilliant in Game 5 on Tuesday, making 42 saves to extend the series.

Lehner will make his 11th postseason start for the Knights and seventh in eight games. The 29-year-old pending free agent is 7-3 with a .918 save percentage and 2.08 goals-against average. He has two shutouts against the Canucks in this series and has allowed six goals total in four games.

Demko will decide his team’s playoff fate again after appearing only once in the playoffs, for less than nine minutes, before Game 5. The Canucks’ backup was pressed into duty Tuesday, as Jacob Markstrom didn’t dress. Markstrom started Vancouver’s first 13 postseason games and played on back-to-back nights three times. He is 8-6 with a .919 save percentage and 2.85-goals-against average.

Other than Game 5, Demko has hardly been dominant. He was 13-10-2 in the regular season with a .905 save percentage and 3.06 goals-against average. He has only made more saves than he did in Game 5 twice in his career, and both times he allowed more goals.

The Canucks, however, didn’t seem shocked by his performance.

“He’s an unbelievable goalie and really athletic, and he’s a gamer,” forward Brock Boeser said. “It doesn’t surprise me at all that he came in and played so well for us.”

If the Canucks win Game 6, Game 7 will take place Friday. Knights coach Pete DeBoer has alternated goaltenders the first two times his team played on back-to-back nights in the postseason.

Contact Ben Gotz at bgotz@reviewjournal.com. Follow @BenSGotz on Twitter.

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