The National Hockey League had a very busy Tuesday night schedule which included a historic win that came with, possibly, the save of the year. We also have a pair of roommates in Chicago and the true definition of a workhorse in the American Hockey League.
Highway Robbery in Las Vegas
We have talked about Marc-Andre Fleury quite a bit in the “Goalie News” so far this season because he has been playing some of the best hockey of his career. Although the Vegas Golden Knights are going through a rough patch, with just three wins in their last 10 games, it certainly isn’t because of Fleury’s play.
Last night, Fleury became just the seventh goaltender in NHL history to win 450 games with a 4-2 victory over the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs. Out of his 31 saves on the night, none were better than his flat-out robbery of Nic Petan.
With less than four minutes to play and the Golden Knights nursing a 3-2 lead, Ilya Mikeyev hit the crossbar and the puck came to Petan. The young forward though he had the game-tying goal on his stick and then Fleury made this spectacular glove save.
“It was fun,” Fleury said of his save after the game. “A little lucky because I didn’t stop the first one because it hit the crossbar. It’s good when you get those second saves to redeem yourself. It was a lot of fun.
“You just enjoy it. You get up, have a little smile. You’re just happy that it didn’t go in. I think as a goalie those are the saves that make you feel like when you’re a player and score a goal. Those are the saves I love to play for.”
Nylander “Pays the Rent”
When Alexander Nylander was traded to the Chicago Blackhawks by the Buffalo Sabres last July, he needed to place to stay in his new town. Veteran goaltender and former teammate Robin Lehner reached out to the young forward and he and his wife invited him to move with their family.
Nylander has fit in well with the Blackhawks, so far, and after the Tweet Lehner sent out on Monday night, he seems to have fit in at his new home as well.
One of the first to reply to this was a laughing Adam Boqvist, the Blackhawks’ recently demoted 2018 first-round draft pick. Lehner quickly told him that he was next!
John Dietz of the Daily Herald recently asked Lehner how things are going with his tenant and it appears to be great for everyone involved.
“He’s great with my kids,” Lehner said. “My son loves Fortnite and Alex loves Fortnite too. So they get to play together. … My son likes him more than he likes me right now.”From “How living with a Blackhawks goalie and his family helps Nylander thrive” The Daily Herald – 11/4/19
Petersen Doing it All in Ontario
When you look up the term “workhorse,” Merriam-Webster describes it as a person who performs most of the work of a group task or something that is marked useful, durable or dependable. All of those descriptions perfectly apply to Ontario Reign goaltender Cal Petersen.
Petersen, originally a fifth-round draft pick by the Sabres in 2013, is giving a whole new meaning to being the “number one” goaltender. The Reign have played 16 games so far this season and Petersen has started all 16 of them. He was pulled twice this season and has played every minute except for 28:23.
“I’m fine playing all the games that Stutts (head coach Mike Stothers) wants me to put in,” Petersen said earlier this month. “I like to pride myself on being called upon whenever I need to be. I played a lot of games in college, played a lot of back-to-backs, so I’m fairly used to that. Like Stutts says, all the other guys have to play, so why doesn’t the goalie have to play too. I’m fine with it whenever my number is called.”
Even with the heavy workload, Petersen is still excelling with a 2.82 goals-against average (GAA) and .925 save percentage (SV%). Many think that he is the Los Angeles Kings’ goaltender of the future, but they may want to be sure they don’t wear him down in Ontario first.
Greg Boysen has been writing about the Chicago Blackhawks since 2010 and has been a site manager for both FanSided and SB Nation. He has been published in The Hockey News and was fully credentialed for the 2013 Stanley Cup Final. Among his various roles with The Hockey Writers are covering the Blackhawks, the AHL, writing the daily “Today in Hockey History” column, serving as a copy editor, and appearing and hosting multiple YouTube shows, including Blackhawks Banter. He is credentialed with the Chicago Wolves, Rockford IceHogs, and Milwaukee Admirals, while also being a regional scout for the NAHL. And, just because his plate isn’t full enough, Greg hosts trivia in the Chicago area two nights a week. For interview requests or to provide topic suggestions, follow Greg on Twitter and reach out.