Skip to content

Low shot total hurts Braden Holtby

Apr 28, 2012, 6:41 PM EDT

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 28: Braden Holtby #70 of the Washington Capitals reacts after giving up a goal in the second period of Game One of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the New York Rangers during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on April 28, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) Getty Images

The New York Rangers and Washington Capitals combined for just 32 shots on goal in the Rangers’ 3-1 victory on Saturday. Braden Holtby was never asked to stop more than six shots in a single period. Which, as it turns out, might have been part of the problem for Holtby.

He admitted after the game that facing just 14 shots on goal made it difficult for him to remain focused. Keep in mind, that the Boston Bruins managed at least 29 shots on goal in each of their seven first-round contests.

The Washington netminder can’t be completely blamed for this loss, but there was certainly room for improvement. Some of those goals looked preventable on his end, even if his teammates could have also done more on those plays.

It would be inaccurate to say that Holtby needs to win this series all by himself if the Capitals are to advance. Washington’s defense, while not flawless, shouldn’t be underestimated. Similarly, Holtby didn’t defeat the Boston Bruins on his own, but he was a star in that series. It might be unfair to ask of a rookie goaltender, but the Capitals need him to be a star again.

He wasn’t terrible in Game 1, but he certainly didn’t emerge as a hero – and now the New York Rangers are up 1-0.

  1. paperlions - Apr 28, 2012 at 7:01 PM

    Wait a second….the low shot total was a problem…but his teammates could have done more on the plays where he gave up a goal….you mean, like blocked the shot further reducing the shot total?

    Is the theory that if his teammates do nothing to help him that is it better for the Caps goal prevention?

    • Ryan Dadoun - Apr 28, 2012 at 7:26 PM

      I’m not saying that his teammates should do nothing to help him.

      I know it might sound like a contradiction, but it’s big picture vs small picture. The big picture is, yes, the low shot total might have hurt him, but at the same time, I think that’s more on him than the defense. The small picture is that, on Chris Kreider’s goal for example, Holtby wasn’t the only one that got beat.

      • paperlions - Apr 28, 2012 at 8:16 PM

        I understand…it was mostly sarcasm. I’m just not a fan of post-hoc narrative.

        If he faces 14 shots and gets a shutout then “he didn’t have to work very hard for it”….if he faces 14 shots and gets beat a lot then “he didn’t see enough action to stay on top of his games”.

        The truth is probably that every goalie has stretches of 14 shots where they give up 3 goals, it just looks bad when that stretch represents an entire game and that is what happened here…odd things happen over small samples…you don’t need a post-hoc explanation, these things just happen.

      • stakex - Apr 28, 2012 at 10:47 PM

        I call BS on that. A strait on slap shot from above the circle, with no screen or deflection should be stopped every single time by a professional goalie. No excuses. Was there a defensive breakdown that allowed the shot to be taken? Sure… but its a puck that HAS to be stopped in a tied game and no one is to blame but Holtby on that play.

  2. bleed4philly - Apr 28, 2012 at 9:04 PM

    You can’t score just one goal in 60 minutes and blame the loss entirely on the goalie.

  3. tackledummy1505 - Apr 28, 2012 at 9:44 PM

    Rangers play crappy hockey. They play not to lose and sit on defense when they score once. Keep it up Rangers it’ll bite you in the rear eventually

    • taytay099 - Apr 28, 2012 at 10:54 PM

      What game did you watch? I saw the Rangers control the puck quite a bit in the offensive zone. They weren’t just sitting on a lead the whole game.

    • jkay1818 - Apr 28, 2012 at 11:07 PM

      again with you? didnt i embarrass you on the other thread yesterday? can you remind yourself that this is coming from a delusional flyer fan? The rangers destroyed your team in all 6 meetings, they were outhit by a 2:1 ratio and they were outscored 24-11 in the 6 games. your amazing offense scored under 2 goals a game. Do you honestly think the goalies left in these playoffs will give up goals and flop around like fluery did? You commented yesterday “when was the last time the rangers played a complete game” and like i responded, not sure, but i do know 6 for sure, when they dismantled the flyers every meeting. Can’t you see what a clown you are? every comment you make is about 2 thumbs up and 14 thumbs down. Rangers play crappy hockey, they only finished with over 50 wins. Youre a genius. The sad thing is i happen to think the flyers fans are knowledgeable for the most part, youre just making them look bad. the fact you come on here talking about them is asinine, especially when you were absolutely destroyed by the rangers this season.

      • tackledummy1505 - Apr 30, 2012 at 5:45 PM

        I believe that your goalie chokes against the Flyers when it matters most. Commenting on 2 years ago, when you were knocked out of the playoffs by the Flyers and superb goalie Brian Bouche lol. Can’t sit on a lead and hope it lasts in the playoffs. Playoffs are a different beast and if I know the Rangers, they’ll collapse lol

  4. stakex - Apr 28, 2012 at 10:55 PM

    When you give up 3 goals on 14 shots for a S% of .786… you had a bad game. Its not like they were deflected shots Holtby had no chance on either… all three of the Rangers goals were stoppable (and to be fair, so was the one goal Lundquist allowed). There is no way to spin that into a “so-so” game, and there is no excuse for it. Holtby simply had an awful game, and needs to bounce back. If he doesn’t, its going to be a short series….

  5. capsfan19 - Apr 28, 2012 at 11:41 PM

    DAYUM! You got railed! Ha but yes holtbt needs to play and he will. He played awful when we faced buffalo and bounced back after tht. I believe that game was against the rangers….

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kessel (1889)
  2. P. Kane (1694)
  3. P. Datsyuk (1382)
  4. M. Richards (1376)
  5. N. Backstrom (1234)