After giving up 16 goals in less than seven periods of work in his first three starts with the Penguins, goalie Antti Niemi was placed on waivers Monday afternoon.
If he is not claimed by noon Tuesday, coach Mike Sullivan said the ideal scenario would see the 34-year-old Finn assigned to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the AHL to work on his game.
“That would be a great option, to give him an opportunity to get in some ideal circumstances and give him an opportunity to build his confidence in an environment that’s not as high stakes as the one we’re in here,” Sullivan said.
If Niemi is sent down, the Penguins would likely call up 22-year-old Tristan Jarry or 26-year-old Casey DeSmith to take his place. Jarry is the stronger long-range prospect. DeSmith is off to a better start to this season.
“They’re both good young goaltenders,” Sullivan said. “When we signed Antti, we knew we had two guys in Tristan and DeSmith who are young goalies with a lot of upside.”
Niemi is 0-3 with a 7.49 goals-against average and .797 save percentage this season. He stopped 25 of 32 shots in a 7-1 loss at Tampa Bay on Saturday night. The Penguins signed him to a one-year, $700,000 in July.