The Dallas Stars couldn’t finish off the Colorado Avalanche in overtime last night, but that wasn’t the fault of Kari Lehtonen. The phrase “save of the year” gets tossed around a bit too lightly sometimes, especially when it’s early in the season. It’s only November (barely) and there’s a lot of hockey left to be played.
How many saves will top this one by the end of the season though?
It’s important to watch the slow motion replay, since it’s likely that what you think happened isn’t really what happened.
In full speed it looks like Lehtonen reaches out with his glove and snatches John Mitchell’s shot out of the air. That isn’t the case though. Instead, Lehtonen somehow manages to get his pad on the shot while making a desperation move on the wrap around play.
The save came at a time when the Stars badly needed it. They had literally just scored a goal (you can hear the assists being announced in the background as the play develops) and the Avalanche came storming back down the ice to reclaim their two-goal lead. Lehtonen’s massive stop preserved the 2-1 score, and Dallas would eventually knot the game at two.
While the Stars couldn’t get two points in OT, they still managed to steal one from the jaws of defeat. Thanks in large part to Lehtonen’s outstanding play and this single incredible save.
What do you think? Save of the year or is it too early to call?