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Cam Ward blows Keith Ballard’s mind

Dec 15, 2011, 10:56 PM EDT

Things haven’t been great for Cam Ward this season. His struggles are part of the reason that Paul Maurice is out of a job. Ward’s record is under .500 and his individual stats are lousy. Still, the guy has talent, which Keith Ballard found out in a big way on this bodacious glove save. (Carolina beat Vancouver 4-3, by the way.)

 

  1. warpstonebc - Dec 15, 2011 at 10:59 PM

    Great save… but if Ballard had one-timer’d it, that’s a goal.

    Hopefully it haunts Ballard enough to continue improving this year. He’s playing much better than last year.

    • elvispocomo - Dec 16, 2011 at 1:49 PM

      That was my first thought as well, he should have one-timed it. Instead he has his head down rather than looking at the net and tries to control it to get a better shot. He would have been better to snap it along the ice rather than trying to make sure it gets up.

      If Ballard was playing confidently, he would have snapped that home without thinking twice. As it is, last season and a slow start this year are weighing on him a little – even if he’s been playing well of late – and everything isn’t going to come as naturally as it should.

      The signs are there though, as well as for Ward that he’s still one of the top goalies around!

  2. loinstache - Dec 15, 2011 at 11:48 PM

    Amazing setup by Raymond, horrendous release, amazing save.

  3. petriskriko - Dec 16, 2011 at 1:48 AM

    Great save. The lesson for goalies is never quit…because you never know when it might be Keith Ballard with the open net.

  4. tbcrow - Dec 16, 2011 at 2:27 AM

    Trying to give Ballard the benefit of the doubt here, but it seems like he was 100% certain he had the goal, so he took his time to avoid making an even greater mistake, rushing a shot and missing a wide open net.

    I know the peanut gallery will say it’s impossible to miss that, but it is possible. The pass was heavy, he was settling the puck slightly and fired it as soon as he was sure it’d be whizzing in the direction he was after. Better choice to have gone with a 1 timer? Sure, definitely, but I really believe he was trying to secure a solid goal and not whiff on a 1 timer or throw a wrister past the outside of the post because he didn’t settle the puck.

    I’m sure many will read this and be convinced it’s ridiculous, but if you look at how Vancouver has just be crucified by the media, would you want the weight of losing a game to a wide open net on your shoulders?

    Point #2, I’m not sure how Mr. O’Brien here has missed this, but Cam Ward has had a retardedly good season. He has faced more rubber than any other goal tender in the league (862 this season so far), which is astronomical.

    I live about half a mile from our home ice, and it’s no secret why we have been losing, our defense has been hanging Cam out to dry. Sure there are a few he would REALLY want back, but everyone has those. But eventually when you stand around and let the other team act like it’s shooting practice, they are going to get one past your guy. Benefit of the doubt again though, many people just see the numbers, and not the reason behind them.

  5. davebabychreturns - Dec 16, 2011 at 2:12 PM

    The guy’s a defenseman, folks. A defenseman who hasn’t seen regular work on the first two pairings or a powerplay unit in over a year.

    No question Ballard has the skill to score a goal like that, and if he was allowed to use those skills often enough he probably would have last night.

    Hopefully the coaching staff see fit to continue to give him more opportunity to show his stuff because the four guys in front of him on the depth chart aren’t going to stay healthy all year.

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