“That stick in front of it by Dennis Wideman…” on Chris Kelly’s goal
I can’t tell from the replays if the game winning goal by the Bruins’ Chris Kelly on Thursday night deflected off Caps defenseman Dennis Wideman’s stick or not, but the TSN announcer in the video embedded below thinks the mere presence of that stick didn’t make things easy on Holtby, though he says the Caps’ goalie still needs to save that shot.
“That stick in front of it by Dennis Wideman is never easy for a goalie. You hear Don Cherry talk about it a lot. A goalie’s got to have this shot, no doubt about it, and Kelly more than anything else absolutely rips it off the far side. Wideman’s reaching for it and so was the goalie Holtby, and a beautiful performance by this youngster, a gutty performance, is ruined by an excellent goal by Chris Kelly.”
“Ruined” feels a bit harsh because there’s a lot the Caps and Holtby can build on after a game like that, despite the game winning goal, but I agree that Holtby put in a great performance, especially for his first playoff appearance. Not a bad night for a 22 year old who sits third on the Caps goaltending depth chart and spent most of the season in the AHL. I also liked the way the Caps players approached Holtby on the ice at the end of the game, showing their support and, what appeared to be, their approval of his play.
Speaking on NBC Sports Network prior to last night’s game, hockey analyst Keith Jones boldly said of Holtby, “If I was Dale Hunter, I would have been starting him with both goaltenders Vokoun & Neuvirth healthy.”
For more Holtby-related reading, check out this post on “The Dynamic Entity” by Justin Goldman (@thegoalieguild), who has been calling Holtby a Top-5 prospect for almost 2 years. Goldman also tweeted about Holtby last night: “Size + quickness + confident demeanor = future starter. Tons of solid traits, especially his biomechanics. Good passer. Plays loud & proud.”
We’ll see how things play out for Holtby as the series continues. It was only one game, but it was impressive, despite what may or may not have been a soft game winning goal.
By the way, Greg over at Days of Y’Orr warned us about Chris Kelly going into this series.
Posted on April 13, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged Boston Bruins, Braden Holtby, Chris Kelly, Dennis Wideman, Goaltender, Justin Goldman, National Hockey League, NHL, Stanley Cup Playoffs, The Dynamic Entity, The Goalie Guild, TSN, Washington Capitals. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.