|(Credit: Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)
So much for easing back in from injury. Despite playing just one game this week, Jussi Rynnas earned the Lone Stars Grille/Player of the Week honors based on his Friday performance alone. Rynnas got a full workout on Friday, stopping a franchise record 52 shots against the Rampage. He added a win, his 22nd of the season, with the effort.
Rynnas was an unknown for the Stars at the beginning of the season. After the Finn spent a year in Europe, Jim Nill saw fit to pit him against Anders Lindback for the Dallas Stars' backup job. On a one-way deal, Rynnas ended up being the unlucky one, getting sent down to Texas after training camp. He didn't pout or mope like some who've been sent down in the past. On the season, he picked up a 22-6-8 record, which powered the Stars to the playoffs for the fifth time in six years.
Now Rynnas is in an interesting spot. In his absence, Jack Campbell played some of his best hockey in his pro career and is giving head coach Derek Laxdal a tough choice of who to start in the playoffs. Rynnas is in a unique situation as well of being on contract for a second year with Dallas also. Jack Campbell is viewed by many as the goalie of the future for the NHL squad. If Rynnas can grab the reins, can he ride that into the NHL backup job this coming season, ceding the Texas net to Campbell as well?