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Who knew Braden Holtby would be outperforming Tim Thomas?

Apr 22, 2012, 11:33 AM EDT

Braden Holtby Getty Images

Before the Capitals and Bruins played Game 1 of their series, one area you would’ve given the advantage to the Bruins almost immediately was in goal. After all it was Boston’s Tim Thomas, last year’s Vezina/Conn Smythe/Stanley Cup winner against Washington rookie netminder Braden Holtby.

After five games and seeing the Capitals with a chance to clinch the series this afternoon at home in Game 6, it shows how much things can change as Holtby is outplaying Thomas.’s Joe Haggerty hears from Caps forward Mike Knuble about how Holtby is making everyone’s job easier in Washington.

“He’s just playing steady and guys are playing hard in front of him. He’s making the saves he needs to make. That’s all you can ask for from your goalie,” said Mike Knuble. “Make the saves you’re supposed to make and the odd one that you’re not supposed to make too. I think we’ve been very limited in the real Grade-A chances on him. We’ve done a good job of eliminating them.”

The Caps defense has done a great job limiting Boston’s chances but that hasn’t meant the Bruins have been stymied. Holtby has made more than a few highlight reel stops through the first five games. Thomas has done the same for Boston as well, but yesterday’s game-winning goal was eminently stoppable. Meanwhile, Holtby was making split-legged stops to keep the game under control.

Perhaps we’re in the midst of watching a new sensation take over in the playoffs yet again.

  1. blomfeld - Apr 22, 2012 at 11:54 AM

    Barack Obama ?

  2. alecitrullo10 - Apr 22, 2012 at 12:17 PM

    Tim Thomas is done in Boston….i get the feeling after everything that went down this year with Thomas that we should be getting ready for the Tukka Rask ear in Beantown…i believe Thomas’ contract runs out after this year but not 100% sure…

    • grimlock410 - Apr 22, 2012 at 12:53 PM

      He has another year after this. That being said there are alot of teams, like Tampa and Chi that would take a shot on 1 or 2 year run with Thomas.

    • hockeyflow33 - Apr 22, 2012 at 1:06 PM

      his NMC is up after this year but what a ridiculous comment. he’s a year removed from a Vezina, Conn Smythe and the greatest postseason to earn a Cup. Thomas isn’t the problem this postseason, the lack of scoring is.
      Dont forget Rask backstopped the collapse against the flyers in 2010

  3. daveydawg - Apr 22, 2012 at 12:23 PM

    TT Goes through cold spells, and unfortunately he’s in one now, off his angles and awkward in net… But what’re you gonna do at this point….

    • bloggersarenotjournalists - Apr 22, 2012 at 2:15 PM

      .922 save % in the series
      Many goalies would love to be so cold

  4. 8man - Apr 22, 2012 at 12:25 PM

    Sebastian Giguere anyone? Anyway, this happens more often than not. Here’s why, new kids on the block are more likely to listen to coaching then established vets. The Caps have a guy in kolzig who knows a little something about the position. And what Thomas did last year, is a rare feat. Expecting him to duplicate it is asking a lot. No, the other five guys on the ice are going to have to do more.

    And my sense of it is that the Bs have not been the same team since that whole White House incident. I think the team still respects Thomas as a competitor, but there may be some anger over all of the unecessary attention the whole charade brought to that locker room. Thomas should have gone or just lied and said he was sick and left it at that.

    • fullbagg - Apr 22, 2012 at 12:48 PM

      He is a blowhard. He damn near blamed his team and discounted Holtby in earlier loses. THAT is what makes a team hate him. When it’s someone else’s fault and he separates himself from the blame in a team lose. Classless. Just like not respecting the office of the President. Maybe if it was Nixon. Even Bill Clinton was worthy of respect. And I voted against him twice….Which I regret..

  5. shrshot - Apr 22, 2012 at 12:52 PM

    Thomas is just getting ready to start his new career as a porn star. Wait, he’s had that ‘stache for a while? Oh, nevermind.

  6. blueblood86 - Apr 22, 2012 at 1:00 PM

    Washington is a fluke every year
    They WON’T win more than a round

  7. bloggersarenotjournalists - Apr 22, 2012 at 1:00 PM

    People in Lloydminster and Saskatoon
    And that’s about it

  8. capsrockva - Apr 22, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    Braden Holtby is a legit goalie. GO CAPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thomas’s confidence is gone.

  9. dropthepuckeh - Apr 22, 2012 at 2:22 PM

    Thomas is playing like an elite goalie just not up to his normal self which is so much better than everyone else. Who cares what he did with the White House? Pat of what makes this a wonderful place to live is the ability to express oneself without the fear pf prosecution. Would you people rather he be arrested for expressing himself politically? he can respect the President and still say no thank you to visiting. If you think he is out of line that you are no better than what you are accusing him of.

    The Bruins do not hate TT and there is no discord in the locker room. he has let in a couple of weak goals but he is human. The Bruins wouldn’t have won the Cup without him playing at a level seldom if ever seen before. You don’t go from best to worst that quickly. I would start a franchise with him in net any day.

    Nice to see the Caps “fans” get cocky now that they are ahead a game. Be careful gents, you know how badly you choke in these situations….

  10. capsrockva - Apr 22, 2012 at 2:31 PM

    May I remind you we own Boston in Boston this season. Just saying

  11. dropthepuckeh - Apr 22, 2012 at 2:37 PM

    Own? Have you won anything ever beside a couple playoff games? You own jack sh*t. Maybe a few prima donna underachievers. We own the 2011 Cup. Just saying.

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