The Minnesota Wild downed the San Jose Sharks last night, and the main reason was Josh Harding. He was absolutely phenomenal for Minnesota and helped the team steal an unlikely win while at home. Overall the Wild were outshot 38 to 13, which included a 21 save performance from Harding in the second period alone.
One of his best stops of the evening came against San Jose’s fourth-leading scorer in Joe Pavelski. With the Wild clinging to a 1-0 lead, the Sharks made a nifty play at the blue line to spring Pavelski. He had plenty of time and space to pick his shot, and labeled a wrister for the top corner, glove side.
While the save itself is spectacular, what should really get your attention is how far Harding came out while challenging the shooter. Pavelski would have had to power the shot through Harding’s glove if he wanted to score here, because there wasn’t a whole lot of net to shoot at.
The goalie made no mistake with the rebound, and he preserved a one-goal lead for his team when they desperately needed him to come up big. Mikko Koivu would score minutes later, giving the Wild a two-goal lead when the game could have easily been tired if not for Harding and his flashy glove save.