Twenty games into the 2016 season, Braden Holtby secured his first shutout of season. Holtby earned the shutout, the 21st of his career, against the Edmonton Oilers last night. During the game he also made a season-high 33 saves. Simply put, Holtby’s performance in the pipes was the reason that the Capitals won that game.
Holtby was easily the star of the game last night as the Oilers hammered him with 33 shots. His most noteworthy save came as Oilers forwards Eric Gryba and Taylor Hall came barreling down the ice toward Holtby, who lost his footing, but still managed to make a rather dramatic save while in a side plank position.
Caps forward, Tom Wilson said about Holtby, “He’s unbelievable. I think you’ll be seeing replays on that [Eric Gryba] save for probably the rest of the year if you missed it, it was pretty cool.”
Meanwhile, coach Barry Trotz had only high praise for Holtby’s performance between the pipes tonight. “He absolutely deserved the shutout. He’s been one of our top plays all year. Tonight he was by far our best player. There wasn’t even anybody in the same universe as him.”
Capitals third line forward Justin Williams said, “I’ve worked with a lot of great goal tenders and you can always tell when they’re on and he [Holtby] just had that sparkle today.”
Holtby is having an incredible start to the 2016 season. He has posted a 12-4-0 record this seasons with a 1.88 goals against average and a .926 save percentage. Holtby is now 4-1-1 in his career against the Oilers with two shutouts. He earned his first NHL shutout on March 9, 2011 against Edmonton.
By Stephanie Judge