Alex Ovechkin’s shootout goal lifted the Washington Capitals to a 2-1 victory against the Tampa Lightening. Alexander Semin scored another clutch goal to tie the game with 5:32 left in regulation. The Caps have won five straight. During this stretch, they continue to play sound defensively, they are getting timely goals from Ovi and Semin, and the goal tending has been very good.
Due to injury, Braden Holtby had to replace Michal Neuvirth in net to start the second period. Holtby shut down the Bolts in regulation, overtime, and in the shootout. He was names the game’s #1 star. More proof the Caps have depth at the goalie position. Holtby was the story of the night…
Great goal tending can take a team deep into he playoffs. Here are my top candidates who are “most likely” to get hot in this year’s Stanley Cup playoffs:
5. Jimmy Howard – Detroit – Howard is possibly in the best position of any top “soon to be” playoff goal-tender. He has a deep team in front of him, and he has the best defensman and leader in the NHL with him, Nicholas Lidstrom. However, Howard can’t move higher than 5thbecause he just signed a multi-year extension. This is the kiss of death for a goalie entering the playoffs.
4. Carey Price – Montreal – Leads the NHL in wins. Frankly, for the Habs to do anything in the playoffs, he will need to be scorching hot… he’s showing focus this year and very steady.
3. Marc-Andre Fleury – with a healthy team, he may not need to be the best player in the playoff, but he will be…
2. Roberto Luongo – Vancouver – the Captain has lead his team to the number one overall record… playoff experience…he can dominate.
1. Tim Thomas – Boston – unreal what he’s done this season. He’s let in 89 goals and GAA under 2.00…
My bet is on Luongo or Thomas being the hottest goalies in the playoffs. However, keep an eye on Jonathan Quick and Miikka Kiprusoff.
About the Author
Written by Dennis Patchett
Huge NHL and soccer fan! Love Columbus, Ohio sports! Buckeyes, Crew, Blue Jackets! Also, the Washington Capitals are my new adopted NHL team!