UTAH PUCK REPORT
Local NHL Goalie Fighting For Roster Spot In Salt Lake Shootout
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – For Salt Lake City-born NHL goalie Richard Bachman, last season had its ups and downs. As this NHL season begins with a preseason game in his hometown, Bachman is fighting for his place with the Canucks.
The goalie was having a good season in the AHL for the Vancouver Canucks AAA affiliate the Utica Comets as he waited for his chance to again prove himself in the NHL.
He got the call-up in mid-November, but things didn’t go well with the Canucks. In his only appearance in the NHL last season, Bachman gave up 6 goals to the Minnesota Wild.
He was immediately sent back to Utica following the game.
What a great time watching @UticaCityFC here at the @ADKBankCenter pic.twitter.com/Q0QW6ThhM8
— Richard Bachman (@Bacher31) December 2, 2018
Bachman kept playing well and waiting for his next call up, but a fluke collision in December ended in an Achilles tear. His call up hopes ended with his season.
In a recent interview with Patrick Johnston of the Vancouver Province, Bachman spoke of his recovery.
“I wasn’t allowed to put pressure on it,” he said. “And then I worked out with a boot on for probably close to five months. So it wasn’t until June that I even started skating. … Not even doing full stops, just strides and backwards skating. And that was that for a while.”
An Achilles tear is a worst-case scenario injury for a hockey goaltender.
“And it wasn’t until mid-July that I really started playing fully competitive, real shooters taking open shots, open looks. So it was a lot of waiting, trying to stay positive throughout it,” Bachman continued.
#Canucks have signed @Bacher31 to a two-year, two-way deal. Welcome 'Bach'! https://t.co/U8DIWVmvOB
— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) June 20, 2018
Now he finds himself in a three-way battle for the starting job in Utica with veteran Zane McIntyre and the “Goalie of the Future” for the Canucks, Michael DiPietro.
Bachman can see the road ahead of him.
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“Whatever happens, it’ll sort itself out in the best way. And I also have to remember that I still have another kind of role down there to help out Mikey or Jake, whoever it may be, and try to help bring them along, too.”
Bachman is expected to play in the Salt Lake Shootout, an exhibition game against the L.A. Kings Saturday, September 20 at Vivint Arena.
Utah Puck Report is hosted by hockey insider and former pro goalie, Jay Stevens. From interviews with NHL hall of famers to updates on Utahns in the NFL – you’ll find it all on this podcast. Subscribe wherever you find podcasts for on kslsports.com.