As the Washington Capitals and Tampa Bay Lightning prepare for Saturday night’s “Beasts of the East” matchup, one of the marquee matchups to watch will be in the goal crease. The Capitals’ Braden Holtby and Lightning’s Andrei Vasilevskiy will man the nets for their respective teams.
Holtby, 29, is 27-17-4 with a save percentage of .909, a goals-against average of 2.89, and three shutouts this season. In his career against the Bolts, he is 9-3-2 with a save percentage of .910, a goals-against average of 2.75, and two shutouts. Holtby recorded a save percentage of .919, a goals-against average of 2.04, and shutouts in Games 6 and 7 of the Eastern Conference Final vs. Tampa Bay last season.
Vasilevskiy’s 33 wins are fourth in the NHL this season while his .929 save percentage is second, only behind former teammate and Dallas Stars goaltender Ben Bishop (.933). In addition, his 2.27 goals-against average is the fifth-lowest while his six shutouts are tied for second only behind Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury’s eight. In his career against the Capitals, the 24-year old is 2-4-0 with a save percentage of .903 and a goals-against average of 3.31. He tallied a save percentage of .906 and a goals-against average of 3.16 in last year’s Eastern Conference Final series against the Capitals.
By Harrison Brown