If this was a tweet, it would truly merely say: Anton Khudobin.

Because of that’s it, that’s the story.

Positive, the Stars had targets from depth avid gamers like Joel Hanley and Joel Kiviranta, nonetheless when you’re coping with a high-powered group similar to the Lightning throughout the Stanley Cup Final, you need your goaltender to be on the excessive of his recreation. And Khudobin was as he backstopped Dallas to a 4-1 Recreation 1 victory on Saturday.

“He’s been a rock for us all playoffs,” talked about Blake Comeau, who had an assistance on Jason Dickinson’s empty-netter late throughout the third. “It was no utterly totally different tonight and we clearly purchased right into a little bit of little little bit of penalty problem there throughout the third. He was there to bail us out and that’s sort of been the storyline this playoffs. Every time we’ve wished an unlimited save at nicely timed elements throughout the recreation, he’s been there for us.

“So, we’ve a great deal of confidence in him. He’s having fun with good for us correct now and we’ll need him to proceed that shifting forward.”

When the final word buzzer sounded, Khudobin had made 35 stops on 36 images — by the way in which wherein, his Lightning counterpart, Andrei Vasilevskiy, observed 19 images (16 saves) — with the one goal coming off a double deflection. Quite a few these saves should current up in direction of the best of every Prime 10.

“I consider his play’s been speaking for itself,” talked about Jamie Oleksiak, who was credited with the game-winning goal. “Clearly [he has] been good for us and, you already know, it looks as if every time he’s in the marketplace he’s merely having pleasurable and I consider we’re feeding off that vitality and, like I discussed, I consider he’s been good. I’m unable to say ample about him.”

This can be a take a look at a number of of those massive saves by Khudobin as Dallas is now three wins away from consuming out of the Stanley Cup.

1. Gumby

Really, undecided how he saved this one out of the online throughout the second interval with Anthony Cirelli on the doorstep. This save saved it a 2-1 recreation.

2. Toe

Inside the third interval, Tampa Bay ramped up the stress tenfold. 

The Lightning had a 92 Corsi For Share, a 88.89 Fenwick For Share and a 9-Zero Scoring Potentialities For profit, plus they outshot the Stars 22-2 throughout the final physique.

Nonetheless when your netminder is on his recreation, he’s on his recreation, as evidenced by this toe save on Alex Killorn.

“I’ve talked tons about Anton, he’s solely a pleasant competitor,” Stars interim head coach Rick Bowness talked about postgame. “Don’t get wrapped up in sorts, get wrapped up throughout the job description: Stop the puck.

“He does each little factor he can to stop every shot. When he’s on, which he was tonight, he’s learning the play. So, he’s getting there and anticipating the shot. He isn’t late. He isn’t chasing the game spherical. He’s focused on what’s coming, the place it’s coming from and he’s meeting the puck. His positional play’s been good. His reads have been good nonetheless further importantly than one thing, he’s a aggressive man and he’ll do irrespective of he can to stop the puck and that’s the reason he’s so environment friendly.”

3. That’s using your head

He took a shot to the masks from 2019 Hart Trophy winner Nikita Kucherov.

Speaking of masks, are you aware that Khudobin — nicknamed “Dobby” for obvious causes — has Dobby from Harry Potter on his masks? 

4. Glove save and a magnificence

With the Stars fundamental by two targets and Tampa Bay nonetheless turning up the heat, Khudobin made a monster glove stop on Zach Bogosian.

“He is a superb goalie. When he’s on, he’s on,” Lightning forward Tyler Johnson well-known. “I believed we generated some pretty good prospects and he made some truly massive saves. . . . He’s a heck of a goalie, so we’ll should make some good performs.”

The Stars lead the best-of-seven sequence one recreation to none. Recreation 2 is scheduled for eight p.m. ET Monday in Edmonton (NBCSN, Sportsnet, CBC, TVAS).

Khudobin stole Recreation 1 for the Stars, nonetheless he already had numerous plans for capturing the Cup.


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