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Former Flyers Goalie Becomes Red Wings’ Unquestioned Starter

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Alex Lyon
Former Philadelphia Flyers goalie Alex Lyon has officially stolen the net in his first season with the Detroit Red Wings. (Photo: AP)

Five seasons ago, the Philadelphia Flyers were forced to start eight different goalies over the course of the 2018-19 season. Half of them were 26 or younger. Included in that group is current Detroit Red Wings goalie Alex Lyon.

Lyon, now 31, spent parts of four years with the Flyers, who gave him his first chance at life in the NHL. However, Lyon played in 10 or more games for Philadelphia just once – his first season back in 2017-18.

The undrafted netminder last played for the Flyers in the 2020-21 season before making a one-season cameo with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2021-22. Last year, Lyon made some headlines for his torrid run that helped propel the eventual Stanley Cup runners-up Florida Panthers to the postseason. Having spent most of the season with the Charlotte Checkers in the AHL, Lyon went 9-4-2 for Florida, posting a 2.89 GAA and a .912 save percentage.

The longtime Flyers goalie was not retained by the Panthers and instead signed a two-year, $1.8 million contract with the Detroit Red Wings on July 1. Lyon was expected to serve as Ville Husso’s understudy and compete with James Reimer for playing time, except that’s not at all what happened.

Instead, Lyon is now the Red Wings’ unquestioned starter in goal.

The white-hot shot-stopper is 13-6-2 in his first season in Detroit, with a 2.51 GAA and a .922 save percentage – comfortably the two best marks of his career. Red Wings head coach Derek Lalonde said Thursday that the net belongs to Lyon for the foreseeable future.

It’s hard to blame Lalonde for saying Husso is going to rotate in for Lyon; the former Flyers warden has more than earned the net through his play and hard work. Indeed, Lyon recorded his second shutout of the season just a few weeks ago, stopping all 30 shots he faced in a 3-0 shutout of his old Flyers.

The Flyers have spent most of the last few years searching for a reliable backup goaltender. They finally found that in Sam Ersson, except Ersson is now the starter with Carter Hart set to be away from the team for an indeterminate period of time. Makes you think.

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