Photo: Patrick McDermott/Getty Images
After making 40 saves in the Washington Capitals‘ 4-3 overtime win over the Boston Bruins at Capital One Arena on Saturday night, Vitek Vanecek became the second rookie goaltender in franchise history to remain unbeaten in regulation in his first seven career games, joining Jim Carey (6-0-0-1 in 1994-95), and one of nine goaltenders to accomplish this feat since 1967-68.
Vanecek is also the ninth rookie goaltender since the 1967-68 season to begin his career without a regulation loss in his first seven career NHL games. He tied Jim Carey for the Capitals’ franchise record (6-0-0-1 during the 1994-95 season) on Saturday night.
His five wins are tied with Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen for second in the NHL behind Colorado Avalanche and former Capitals’ netminder Philipp Grubauer.
The 25-year-old has posted a .930 save percentage or higher in four of his seven games this season, including on Saturday (.930).
Since starter Ilya Samsonov tested positive for COVID-19 on January 20, Vanecek has made his case for taking Samsonov’s job as he is 5-0-2 with a .918 save percentage and a 2.78 goals-against average this season.
By Harrison Brown