Season Review – Starting the season in Binghamton due to the lockout, Lehner was a good soldier when he was sent down without playing a game for the Senators shortly into the season. He was among the best goalies in the AHL until his callup after Craig Anderson went down with his ankle injury. Splitting time with Ben Bishop, Lehner proved he was ready for NHL action by keeping the undermanned Senators in almost every game he played, allowing Ottawa to move Bishop to Tampa when Anderson was ready to return. Lehner played 12 games in Ottawa, earning points in 9 of them going 5-3-4 with a 2.20 GAA and .936 SP. He was 3 appearances short of qualifying for the all-rookie team.
Playoffs – Lehner watched the playoffs from the bench for the most part, but he did relieve Craig Anderson twice, taking the loss in one game. He allowed 2 goals in almost 50 total minutes against the Penguins.
Contract Status – Lehner has one year left on his entry level deal that will pay him $870K. He will be a restricted free agent after the upcoming season.
Importance To Franchise – Lehner is the goalie of the future, and will push Craig Anderson to be the goalie of the present. He is a cornerstone of the rebuild and a key piece to the puzzle that Bryan Murray is building.
Needs to Improve – Like any young goalie he just needs experience against NHL shooters. Controlling his rebounds better will help his defensemen and reduce the number of second shots the opposition get.
Grade – A – Lehner is a young goalie who stepped into an awkward situation and handled it with class. His performance on the ice when he was finally given the opportunity was about as good as could be expected.