During the playoffs, goaltending can win or lose a series.
Last night, Sergei Bobrovsky saved 29 out of 31 shots and willed the Columbus Blue Jackets to a double-overtime win in Boston in Game 2, including several stops of the "rub your eyes because you can't believe he just saved that" variety.
In a playoff campaign full of records and firsts, the Blue Jackets got their first win in the second round in franchise history, thanks to strong play from Bobrovsky and the club's refuse-to-lose attitude.
Game 2 was an emotional rollercoaster. The Blue Jackets came back from one-goal deficits twice to tie the game, and Bobrovsky stood on his head all night until Matt Duchene silenced the Garden in double overtime.
We put together a highlight reel of all of Bobrovsky's great saves in Game 2 and it was nearly three minutes long. That's how damn good he was last night.
In the first overtime, the fluky ice at TD Garden came into play. A routine dump-in by the Bruins took a strange bounce, and Bobrovsky had to be alert to move laterally towards his glove side and save a certain goal.
Bad ice. Good Bob.
“His best save of the night was on a dump in, which is insane,” Matt Duchene said of his netminder. “I looked at [Nick] Foligno and said, ‘There are not many goalies that can stop that puck.’ It should have been over right there, honestly, on a dump in. Which is insane. That’s the way it goes on bad ice in overtime. Anything is possible with him in the net. He’s something else.”
Later on, Bobrovsky made another ridiculous save, moving back to his blocker side across the crease to deny another sure-fire goal.
His sharp movement and anticipation are what make him one of the best goaltenders in the NHL, and it was on display last night.
Then, on a deflection from a point shot, he reacted quickly and got his blocker on it to send the puck wide.
“Playoff Bob” was a thing going into the postseason as the tender had a 5–14 all-time record in the postseason. He's murdering that narrative, however, to the tune of a 5–1 start and a 2.01 GAA and .930 Sv% in the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
The number one cop on the force is back on the case.