Flyers rookie goaltender Carter Hart stopped a career-high 41 shots on Monday night. But his save on Vancouver’s Nikolay Goldobin is the one that everyone was talking about afterward.
With the Flyers hanging on to a one-goal lead with less than six minutes remaining, Elias Pettersson fired a shot from the right faceoff circle that rebounded off Hart to Goldobin on the left circle. Goldobin had a wide-open net, but Hart dove and stopped the shot with his right arm.
“I don’t hate him,” Goldobin said, smiling.
“I think I almost started raising my hands" in celebration, said Canucks teammate Brock Boeser.
The Flyers escaped with a 2-1 victory and have now won eight in a row.
Vancouver’s only goal came after Hart darted out of his net to challenge a 50-50 breakaway puck. He managed to get it past Brandon Sutter, but not Boeser who slid the puck into the vacated net.
“He had a pretty impressive junior career and he comes in in his first year and I’m sure he didn’t know where he’d fit in,” Sutter said. “Tonight, he definitely saved them at the end of the game there.”
Sutter said the Canucks' only option, especially as the game wore on, was to just “shoot, shoot, shoot.”
“The way he was playing in the third, we kind of said that we’ve got to come in and shoot a bunch of pucks,” said Sutter, who had three shots in the final period. “I think we had close to 20 shots in the third period [18, to be exact]. We did the things we wanted to do. He made some big saves. He probably made 10 saves in the third that could have gone in. That’s the way it goes sometimes.”
But it was the save on Goldobin that will lead the highlight reels.
“The puck was spinning, so I was scared to shoot it right away because it could go wide. So I stopped it and he made a soccer save," said Goldobin, a 23-year-old Russian who played against Hart “a couple of times” internationally. “He played with confidence and made some great saves in the third period all over the place. I think he did a really a good job.”
Boeser, who is third on the team in scoring, had a game-high seven shots.
“It’s amazing,” the right-winger said. “He steps in like that and plays that good of hockey, it’s impressive. And to be a young kid like that, it’s cool to see.”