Monday night was a rather light schedule in the National
Hockey league with just two games on the docket. However, those contests did
provide us with some great saves. Plus, we will take a look at some top-notch
goaltending in Philadelphia and a shutout that proved something get better with
Kuemper & Demko Provide the Highlights
The Pacific Division could prove to be one of the competitive
divisions in hockey this season. Arizona Coyotes and Vancouver Canucks are
right in the thick of things with both teams at 15 points after their victories
Darcy Kuemper helped the Coyotes erase a 2-0 deficit and hand
the Buffalo Sabres their first loss on home ice this season. After giving up a
pair of goals early in the first period, Kuemper settled down to make 24 saves.
In the shootout, it came down to Kuemper versus Casey Mittelstadt
with the game on the line. Mittelstadt tried to lift a backhand shot over
Kuemper, but the goaltender’s glove hand proved to be too quick.
In Vancouver, the Canucks used a five-goal outburst to roll past
the visiting Florida Panthers. Midway through the second period, the Panthers
were buzzing and trying to make a comeback, but backup goaltender Thatcher
Demko stopped the momentum.
The young netminder was able to stay with the puck after
Evgenii Dadonov redirected a shot from the point. Then he showed off his great
footwork by being able to recover and stop Dadonov’s second attempt off the rebound.
Elliott Coming Up Big in Philly
The Philadelphia Flyers believe they have their future franchise
goaltender in Carter Hart, but the youngster is going through some growing
pains of late. Hart currently has a 3.33 goals-against average (GAA) and .862
save percentage (SV%). With the 21-year-old struggling, veteran Brian Elliott
has stepped up and kept the Flyers’ heads above water.
Elliott’s performance last week earned him Third Star of the Week honors from the NHL. He went 3-0-0 last week with a 2.02 GAA. He stopped 97 of the 104 shots he faced for a .933 SV%.
His week began by shutting down the high-powered Vegas
Golden Knights with 33 saves in a 6-2 victory. He followed that up with a 23-save
effort in a 4-1 win at the Chicago Blackhawks.
After beating the Columbus Blue Jackets, 7-4, on Saturday,
he was called upon for some relief duty on Sunday versus the New York
Islanders. Hart was pulled midway through the second period after giving up
five goals on just 14 shots. Elliott stepped in and stopped all 19 shots he
The 34-year-old veteran is now 3-1-0 on the season with a
2.28 GAA and .926 SV% and is a great insurance policy to have while Hart continues
to adjust and develop.
On This Date: Roloson Nabs One for the Old Guys
Dwayne Roloson was living proof that many goaltenders need plenty of development before they can succeed in the NHL. Roloson did not make his NHL debut with Calgary Flames until he was 27-years-old. He did not let that late start effect up and he played for 14 seasons with Flames, Minnesota Wild, Edmonton Oilers, New York Islanders and Tampa Bay Lightning before retiring at the ripe age of 42.
It was back on this date in 2011 when Roloson made 28 saves in a 1-0 victory over the visiting Winnipeg Jets. It was the 42-year-old’s 29th and final shut of his career. The victory also gave Roloson a perfect 10-0-0 record against the Jets/Atlanta Thrashers franchise at the time. He finished his career against them with an 11-1-2 record, 2.60 GAA, .906 SV% and the lone shutout.