Photo credit: Nick Wass
Braden Holtby is that good. He has been the best goalie of the playoffs, posting a .951 save percentage through 11 games. But on Sunday night, the New York Rangers offense finally broke through. They jumped out to a 4-1 lead before the Capitals almost pulled off an unbelievable comeback. For the first time this postseason, we saw Holtby crack. Washington’s faith in him, however, is unshaken. They were not interested in talking about Henrik Lundqvist, who turned aside 42 shots in Washington’s one-goal defeat.
“Our goalie’s better,” Evgeny Kuznetsov, defiant in his postgame media scrum, said. “I don’t know what you want to listen from my mouth, but our goalie’s better.”
Joel Ward, who had three points and five shots on goal in the loss, also deflected blame away from Holtby.
“We definitely didn’t help him,” Ward told reporters. “We left him out a little bit, which sucks because it was our turn to return the favor.”
On Wednesday, the Capitals will get one final shot at defeating New York Rangers. It’s a win Holtby deserves, but one he may not get.
“No matter what, someone’s going home,” head coach Barry Trotz said.
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