Tag: Tim Thomas

Boston Bruins v Vancouver Canucks - Game Seven

Tim Thomas has ‘no animosity’ toward Roberto Luongo


For the most part, Tim Thomas seems like he’s kept quiet regarding his relationship with former 2011 Stanley Cup Final opposing goalie Roberto Luongo. When he does comment, it’s usually a “no harm done” type response.

He uttered that refrain on Monday, telling TEAM 1040’s Satiar Shah that he has “no animosity on his side” toward Luongo.

Thomas, 39, was being asked about Luongo because his Florida Panthers will face the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday. (Thomas believes he’ll get the start tomorrow, though that’s not official.)

To give you a quick refresher on some of the high points of their rivalry/media kerfuffles, it started with Luongo claiming he would have stopped a game-winning goal Thomas gave up in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final. The next day, Thomas memorably said he wasn’t interested in “pumping his tires.”

After that, it was all about the glorious Twitter feed of Luongo, 34. The two most memorable ones came in 2012:

Both goalies have seen some big changes since that hotly contested series – Thomas with his sabbatical last season, Luongo with his strange saga in Vancouver – so it’s not that tough to believe that the guy who won the Vezina and Stanley Cup is the one who really has moved on.

For entertainment value’s sake, it would be more fun if he’d fire back, though …

Update: Just around the time this post went up, Luongo tweeted a little bit of snark about his old buddy. So, it sounds like Bobby Lou will keep the laughs going.

Goalie nods: Talbot starts for Rangers, Islanders give Nabokov another chance

Evgeni Nabokov

News and notes from around the crease on Saturday…

Rangers go with rookie Talbot

The New York Rangers will play in the first of back-to-back games on Saturday and they’ve decided to split the goaltending duties as a result. Rookie Cam Talbot, 26, will start in Montreal so that Henrik Lundqvist is fresh for Sunday’s home game against the Los Angeles Kings.

Talbot has a 1.97 GAA and .933 save percentage in four starts.

Montreal will counter with Carey Price.

Nabokov gets first start in a week

New York Islanders goaltender Evgeni Nabokov has warmed the bench for three straight games after allowing at least four goals in each of his last three starts, but he’ll face Detroit tonight. Red Wings backup Jonas Gustavsson will be his opponent.


— Marc-Andre Fleury is the likely starter for the Penguins for tonight’s match against the New Jersey Devils. Martin Brodeur will fight for his fourth straight win and 675 career victory.

— James Reimer is expected to be in net for the Toronto Maple Leafs in their rematch against the Sabres. Buffalo earned a 3-1 win against Toronto on Friday thanks in part due to Ryan Miller’s 32-save performance. There’s no word on who will start for Buffalo tonight, but it wouldn’t be surprising if they go back to Miller.

— Nikolai Khabibulin will get just his fourth start of the season tonight. He’ll attempt to rebound after posting a 4.73 GAA and .818 save percentage in October. The Blackhawks opponent will be Nashville and the Predators will probably go with 27-year-old rookie Carter Hutton.

— The Tampa Bay Lightning and Phoenix Coyotes’ probable starters have both been identified ahead of tonight’s match. Ben Bishop should get the nod for the Lightning while Phoenix is expected to hand Mike Smith his seventh straight start.

— Justin Peters is penciled in to start on Saturday for Carolina, but nothing has been confirmed. What is known is that the Hurricanes will face St. Louis Blues goaltender Brian Elliott.

— The Colorado Avalanche will start Semyon Varlamov against Florida as they try to snap their first losing streak of the season. No word yet on who the Panthers will use, but Tim Thomas is the most likely bet.

— Despite being yanked on Thursday, the Reto Berra will play between the pipes for the Calgary Flames tonight. Berra has a 3.78 GAA and .884 save percentage in five starts this season. Speaking of struggling goaltenders, the Edmonton Oilers will counter with Devan Dubnyk.

Wild stay hot, Panthers remain the opposite


In a meeting of two teams that seem to be going in totally opposite directions, the status quo reigned supreme, as the Minnesota Wild edged the Florida Panthers 3-2.

Here are a few nuggets to drive that point home:

  • The Wild have won three games in a row and nine of their last 11 games. They’ve also won five in a row in Minnesota.
  • Josh Harding hasn’t lost in regulation since Oct. 17.
  • Meanwhile, Florida’s winning streak ends at … one game. They’ve now lost 10 of their last 11 games and only have two wins in 15.
  • A goalie not named Tim Thomas has won exactly one game: when Jacob Markstrom prevailed in the Panthers’ home-opening 6-3 victory against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Oct. 11.

Yup, it doesn’t get much more disparate than that. The Wild are in the thick of things in an outstanding Central Division while the Panthers might secretly be excited that Buffalo might show some life, as that could increase their odds in the draft lottery.

But, hey, at least they got rid of Kris Versteeg …

Goalie nods: Budaj goes for Habs, Mason back in for Philly


News and notes from around the crease on an unusually busy Friday…

Budaj gets rare start

Montreal will turn to Peter Budaj tonight in Columbus, his first game since allowing three goals on 30 shots in a loss to Colorado on Nov. 2.

Though the Canadiens don’t often start Budaj — Carey Price has been a workhorse this season — the Slovak netminder has established himself as a reliable backup and posted great numbers this year, with a 1.33 GAA and .953 save percentage.

It’s unclear who’ll go for the Blue Jackets on Friday. Sergei Bobrovsky was in goal for Thursday’s 3-2 OT loss to Boston.

Flyers go back to Mason

Philadelphia will give Steve Mason the start tonight in Winnipeg.

The Flyers find themselves with a “good problem to have” in terms of choosing a starter, as both Mason and Ray Emery are on top of their games. Emery was fantastic in a 2-1 win over Pittsburgh on Wednesday, stopping 30 of 31 shots — but Mason has been equally good of late, winning each of his last two starts (including a 5-0 shutout of the Sens in Ottawa on Tuesday).

The Jets will counter with Ondrej Pavelec in goal tonight. Like Mason and Emery, Pavelec has been on fire lately, winning back-to-back games while stopping 41 of 43 shots in a 3-2 shootout victory over Detroit on Tuesday.


Jonathan Bernier will get his second straight start for Toronto on Friday as the Leafs play in Buffalo. The Sabres will go with Ryan Miller in Ted Nolan’s coaching debut.

Cory Schneider is the Devils’ starter tonight against the Kings. Los Angeles hasn’t made a goalie announcement yet, but it’s expected Ben Scrivens will start his second straight in place of the injured Jonathan Quick (groin).

— It’s Marek Mazanec vs. Marc-Andre Fleury in the Nashville-Pittsburgh game, and Braden Holtby vs. Jimmy Howard in Washington-Detroit.

— Elsewhere, Tim Thomas will face off against Josh Harding as the Panthers visit the Wild, while Tuukka Rask will go up against Craig Anderson in Ottawa as the Sens host the Bruins.

— No confirmation yet, but Viktor Fasth could make his return from injury tonight for Anaheim. He’s been out since Oct. 16th with a lower-body injury. If Fasth does go, he’ll be up against Justin Peters, who will get the ‘Canes goal tonight in Carolina.

— The Oilers have confirmed that Devan Dubnyk will start tonight at home against the Sharks. San Jose, who beat Vancouver in overtime last night with Antti Niemi in goal, are likely to go to backup Alex Stalock against Edmonton, but that hasn’t been announced yet.

Kari Lehtonen, the most underrated goalie in the NHL

Alex Goligoski, Ales Hemsky.

Not sure how many of you stayed up to watch last night’s Stars-Oilers game in Edmonton. Those that did saw a first-star performance from Dallas goalie Kari Lehtonen, who really has to be the most underrated netminder in the NHL.

Lehtonen’s 22-save shutout in the Stars’ 3-0 victory bumped his save percentage up to .932. While he’s far from the only regular starter off to an excellent start to the season…


…it doesn’t seem like he gets the attention he deserves.

Maybe that’s because of the market he plays in. Or maybe it’s because he’s signed through 2017-18 so there’s no contract speculating to do. Or maybe it’s because the 29-year-old has been doing what he’s doing for so long that it’s not really a story anymore.

In 393 NHL games, Lehtonen has a save percentage of .915. Among active goalies with at least 10,000 career saves, only Tim Thomas (.921), Henrik Lundqvist (.920), Roberto Luongo (.919) and Tomas Vokoun (.917) have stopped a higher percentage of shots.

That’s pretty good company. Maybe we should talk about the guy a bit more.