Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby just competed in his first career NHL All-Star Game. The Holtbeast stopped eight of ten shots in the Metropolitan Divison’s first and only game, surrendering goals to Aaron Ekblad and future hall of famer Jaromir Jagr.
The Metropolitan Division All-Stars lost 4-3, but after the game, Holtby seemed more concerned about what the crowd was shouting at him after fielding a loose puck.
“I had no idea they were yelling shoot,” Holtby said, laughing. “I thought they were wanting me to get a rid of it. I thought they didn’t want to see the goalie touch the puck or something like that. So I kind of panicked and just got a rid of it.”
Holtby mocked like he were passing an imaginary puck up the imaginary ice in front of him.
Another reporter asked Holtby if he could redo the moment, would he?
“No, no,” Holtby said. “I don’t think that’d be very beneficial to a team.”
The smart Nashville crowd was likely egging Holtby on due to his goal-scoring prowess the night before in the All-Star Skills Competition. Holtby participated in the team-relay race, where he had to shoot two pucks the length of the ice, over a barrier, and into the opposing net for a goal. Holtby managed to score in his first three attempts (even though he needed to score twice), while not even paying attention to if the pucks went in or not.
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) January 31, 2016
It was “muscle memory, I guess,” Holtby said on Friday night.
“I know he going to shoot pretty good because he can shoot like me,” teammate Evgeny Kuznetsov said. “He play very well with his stick.”
Holtby also discussed other topics after the All-Star Game.
On if he liked the new three-on-three tournament format:
“I don’t think the five-on-five game works at all.”
Holtby on losing in the first round:
“A loss is a loss. It’s hard to swallow.” [laughing]
On his chirping ability:
“I’m not very good at chirping anyone so I try and lay low in the background and hope that no one notices me.”
On Barry Trotz’s return to Nashville:
“It was no surprise. It’s very rare you see a coach come back to a team that he was let go with. The amount of love from this city, they appreciate everything he’s done. That’s when you know you’ve done something special. And he has in Nashville. Everyone says they want Barry back but they’re not getting him from us.”
On his favorite team growing up:
“My team was always the Avalanche.”
“He’s scored a few in his career so I’m not the first goalie.”
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