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Habs trust Tokarski despite lack of Stanley Cup playoff experience

May 21, 2014, 9:45 PM EDT

New York Rangers v Montreal Canadiens - Game Two Getty Images

The Montreal Canadiens don’t have Carey Price. You already knew that. They’ll go back to 24-year-old Dustin Tokarski in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final against the New York Rangers. You already knew that, too.

As the Habs suddenly trail 2-0 in the series – the winner earns a berth in the Stanley Cup Final – it appears they’re going to lean on a goalie with now only one post-season game in his National Hockey League career. Do they even have a choice now at this point? (You can have your say in the matter by clicking here.)

In Game 3, Tokarski wasn’t at all bad. New York’s first goal came off a deflection just in front of the Montreal net, and its third goal was a laser shot in the slot from Martin St. Louis. Likely the only goal he would really want back was off the stick of Rick Nash, who fired his one-time shot almost right back into the left arm and chest of Tokarski, who got a piece of the puck but not enough.

It’s indeed a tough spot for Tokarski to be in – in addition to one Stanley Cup post-season start, he’s only played in 10 regular season games in the NHL. But his teammates in Montreal are lending their support behind Tokarski, as the Habs look to somehow get back in this series minus their No. 1 goalie, and one of the best goalies in the entire league.

“I don’t think I’ve ever been through a situation like that, but the kid did well. He’s been skating with the Black Aces for most of the playoffs and he does a job like that,” Habs forward Brandon Prust told reporters.

“That’s why you see they have a lot of trust in him. Even though we don’t know him too well, the organization and the goalie have a lot of trust in him.”

  1. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - May 21, 2014 at 9:52 PM

    He could play once upon a time, perhaps a reunion with Pierre is all he needs……..

    • dolphincult - May 21, 2014 at 11:26 PM

      Delicious save. Hope the kid makes the best of the opportunity. Never know what the future holds.

  2. bleedrangerblue - May 21, 2014 at 9:56 PM

    Geez Cam you must need a story…

  3. stakex - May 21, 2014 at 10:33 PM

    Isn’t this the same story from before…..?

    Also, not only do they have no choice but to trust him…. what else do you expect the players/coach to say?

  4. stepanup - May 22, 2014 at 10:13 AM

    Yes Nash shot it back towards him, but it was a beautifully executed 3 on 2. The pass went from the left wall to the right circle and it was one-timed with high velocity. Wouldn’t call it a softie.

    • bmy0913 - May 22, 2014 at 10:43 AM

      I’d agree with that. All things considered, the kid put them in a position to compete in the game when all the hype was how screwed they were without price. He didn’t have much D help in front of him and overall, his effort is probably a good part of the reason it wasn’t another rout. Can’t knock the kid for that.

      Tonight should be fun, back at the garden. I’m looking for the habs to come out quick and hard, but run into a brick wall. Our boys have to be flying high right now. I want the sweep, and so do they. Now I just have to get through the work day waiting for the puck to drop. haha

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