Capitals top goaltending prospect, Ilya Samsonov, has given up a lot of goals in his first two starts for Russia at the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship. Samsonov surrendered 5 goals against Canada on Monday and 3 goals against the United States on Thursday, giving the 19-year-old goaltender a 4.01 goals against average.
Yet, he’s been stunning in net. Samsonov has seen the second most shots of any WJC goaltender (74) and has the fifth-best (all strengths) save percentage at .892%. Samsonov’s numbers are poor because Russia’s defense has been shredded by better teams at even strength and dominated on the penalty kill, where Samsonov has given up 4 of his 8 goals.
Against the United States, Samsonov authored his most fantastic save of the tournament, stopping a gimme two-on-one goal with some weird, Dominik Hasek-esque flopping.
At first, the stop doesn’t look that impressive from the center-ice angle.
But the behind the net cam tells a much different story. Samsonov makes the save with an acrobatic variation of the double pad stack stop.
If you look closely, the blade of Samsonov’s stick is what actually stops the puck from going in.
Here’s the full video of the save.
The Russians are now 1-2 in preliminary play, but their 3 points in Group B will almost certainly be enough to get to the quarterfinals as both Latvia and Slovakia have no points yet.
And if I were a team in the WJC, I would not want to play Russia because Samsonov could certainly steal a game or two just by himself.
Canada vs. Russia
— IIHF WJC (@iihf_wjc) December 27, 2016
USA vs. Russia
— IIHF WJC (@iihf_wjc) December 30, 2016
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