The hope by now was Arvid Soderblom would have a firm grasp on the No. 1 goaltender spot. Hope and reality are two different things.
Soderblom's first full NHL season has been rough. Rough is putting it politely.
The Hawks have won just two games when he has started in goal. Soderblom has given up 13 goals over his last two games.
He has a 4.15 goals-against-average and a .870 save percentage. Those numbers put him dead last in the NHL among active netminders this year. Only Antti Raanta has a worse save percentage and he was recently waived by the Carolina Hurricanes.
Do not expect Soderblom to suffer the same fate as Raanta.
Soderblom's third-period meltdown in St. Louis normally would have given him a one-way ticket to Rockford to fix his game. Instead, head coach Luke Richardson wants him to work out his issues with the Blackhawks.
Soderblom should be thanking the current state of the Blackhawks as the reason he is still in the NHL. If the Hawks were a contender, he would have been sent to the AHL about a month ago. Since this is still the early stages of an extensive rebuild, a goalie with a -6.6 goals saved above expected gets chance after chance to figure it out at the game's top competition level.
Then again, Lukas Reichel is getting the same chance on the wing. Both were considered future cornerstone pieces coming into the season. Although, Richardson cannot healthy scratch Soderblom. He can sit him for more games though. Then again, rebuilds allow for patience except watching Soderblom give up goal after goal makes it hard to give him time.