The 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs are in full swing, and hockey fans across the world have experienced an incredible first round that has been full of surprises. The biggest surprises of the first round involve the Pittsburgh Penguins and Tampa Bay Lightning losing in clean sweeps. In addition to those mind-blowing early sweeps, another big surprise of the first round involves the Colorado Avalanche. The Avalanche ousted the Western Conference Champion Calgary Flames in five games. Standing in the middle of the Avalanche’s successful first round victory is former Capitals netminder Philipp Grubauer.
Grubauer was a fourth-round pick of the Capitals back in the 2010 NHL Draft. Fast forward over eight years and 100 regular season games later, Grubauer won the 2018 Stanley Cup with the Washington Capitals serving as the primary backup netminder to Braden Holtby.
During the 2018 NHL Draft, the Capitals decided to trade Philipp Grubauer and Brooks Orpik to the Colorado Avalanche in exchange for a second-round draft choice. It was not the most popular decision, but one that appears to be paying off for all parties involved.
TAKING THE NET IN COLORADO
Grubauer arrived in Colorado this season and gave the Avalanche added stability inside their net. Toward the later part in the season, Grubauer claimed the starting role inside the Avalanche net.
In 37 regular season games, Grubauer recorded 18 wins, a 2.64 goals against average, and .917 save percentage.
His great play has carried into the postseason. In the first round of the playoffs, Grubauer recorded 4 wins, a 1.89 goals against average, and .939 save percentage. He recorded these numbers against one of the highest scoring teams in the NHL during the regular season.
BIG POSTSEASON SAVES
Capitals fans may remember seeing some highlight-reel Grubauer saves while he played in Washington D.C. Check out some of Grubauer’s best saves of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs:
— Hockey Daily #StickTogether (@HockeyDaily365) April 14, 2019
THE AVALANCHE ARE CRUISING
While the first round is still going on, the Avalanche are sitting and waiting for their next opponent. The Avalanche will get the winner of the San Jose Sharks vs Vegas Golden Knights series.
— x- Colorado Avalanche (@Avalanche) April 18, 2019
Grubauer has solidified himself as the Avalanche’s starting netminder for the foreseeable future. If his outstanding play continues, the Avalanche’s momentum will continue to roll.
By: George Foussekis