DETROIT — (WXYZ) -- The NHL's 56-game schedule is placing added emphasis on goaltending tandems for the 2021 season.
The Red Wings will have veterans Thomas Greiss and Jonathan Bernier in net this year. Detroit signed Greiss in October while Bernier is entering his third season with the team.
"Goaltending's critical, it's going to be critical this year like it is every year," Red Wings head coach Jeff Blashill said Sunday following the team's training camp scrimmage. "And I think having two guys gives you...it lessens the responsibility on one individual."
While most games in the 2021 schedule are separated by at least a day in between, Detroit has eight scheduled back-to-backs, with changes due to COVID-19 or other factors an ever-present possibility as the season progresses.
"I think we're going to need both guys," Blashill said. "We're going to need both guys going at a high level."
Blashill praised the play of both goaltenders during Sunday night's scrimmage, the final scheduled scrimmage of training camp.
"Greiss has come in, looks real calm...he's a real unflappable guy, nothing seems to bother him, and I thought he did make a number of big saves early," Blashill said. "And I thought (Bernier) made a number of big saves when it got to 3-0 to keep it there and give his team a chance to claw back into it."
The Red Wings open the regular season Thursday night with a home game against the Carolina Hurricanes.