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Thomas Hangs Tough in 1-0 OT Shutout

Friday, 04.13.2012 / 9:24 AM ET / Features
By Anthony Gulizia  - BostonBruins.com
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Thomas Hangs Tough in 1-0 OT Shutout
BOSTON, MA – Boston Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas waited patiently for the flurry of shots he expected after the Washington Capital put just seven on net in the first two periods of last night’s game.

Thomas
The Capitals outshot the Bruins 9-3 in the third period, but Thomas’ air-tight goaltending never cracked as the scoreless stalemate headed for overtime.

“More often than not, when your team outshoots the other team heavily for a couple of periods, whether you score or not, there’s usually a time period in the game where the tables turn,” Thomas said. “And I knew they were going to get their bursts sooner or later. So, I was mentally prepared for that going into the third period.”

In the extra frame, Thomas only had to make one save before Chris Kelly scored the game-winning goal 1:18 in, giving the Bruins a 1-0 lead in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals.

Early in the overtime period, Washington forward Marcus Johannson broke into the zone and challenged Thomas, who made the save – which initiated the game-winning play.

Defenseman Joe Corvo picked up the rebound and carried the puck up the ice, which was passed through the sticks of Brian Rolston and Benoit Pouliot to set up Kelly’s blast from the point.

“[Johannson] got limited to shooting on the blocker side, so I pretty much knew it was going to the blocker side,” Thomas said. “I was obviously very happy to make the save.

“And actually, it flashed into my mind right away, I was like, man, last year, a couple different times in overtime, when I made a big save we went right down and scored. And then I saw Chris [Kelly] take the long pass, and saw he had a step on the defenseman, and I had a good feeling. I had a good feeling that it was going to go in, and I had a good feeling about the guy who had the puck.

“He’d been winging a few past me in practice the last couple of days, and I could tell, his shot’s going right now,” Thomas added, sitting beside Kely in the postgame press conference. “He’s humble. He doesn’t think so. But I’ve seen it.”

At that moment, Kelly glanced at Thomas and said, “He’s being nice.”

But while Thomas was busy complimenting Kelly’s game-winning effort, his teammates had plenty of praise for their veteran goalie.

“You know, Tim is what he is,” Bruins forward Brian Rolston said. “There’s a reason he won the Conn Smythe last year and he was great for us [last night], and obviously you need good goaltending in the playoffs and he was phenomenal.”

Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien echoed Rolston’s sentiment, not only praising Thomas’ saves but his approach to the game.

“I thought Tim did a great job of staying focused and staying sharp,” Julien said. “And when he had to make those big saves, he made them, and that was nice to see, and that’s Tim.

“With the experience he’s had over the course of his career now, those things are starting to really show, and I thought he did a great job. It wasn’t an easy task for him tonight, and the shutout, although he had 17 shots, was well deserved because he stayed focused through the whole game.”

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STANDINGS

ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 FLA 56 32 18 6 153 132 70
2 BOS 55 30 19 6 163 150 66
3 DET 55 28 18 9 138 134 65
4 TBL 54 30 20 4 144 130 64
5 MTL 56 27 25 4 151 151 58
6 OTT 57 25 26 6 159 177 56
7 BUF 56 22 28 6 131 155 50
8 TOR 54 20 25 9 127 151 49

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
P. Bergeron 54 21 26 10 47
L. Eriksson 55 18 25 12 43
D. Krejci 45 13 29 5 42
B. Marchand 50 27 14 14 41
R. Spooner 55 11 28 -8 39
Z. Chara 53 8 22 12 30
J. Hayes 53 12 14 -6 26
M. Beleskey 53 8 18 11 26
T. Krug 54 3 21 1 24
B. Connolly 52 7 12 -4 19
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
T. Rask 20 16 5 .917 2.55
J. Gustavsson 10 3 1 .913 2.54
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