Almost every hockey fan knows Johnny Bower, the four-time Stanley Cup-winning netminer and Hockey Hall of Fame inductee.
Not as many know Barry Brust, a 29-year-old minor-league journeyman with 11 NHL games on his resume.
But all that could change soon — in eighteen minutes and 11 seconds, to be precise.
That’s all Brust needs to set the AHL’s consecutive shutout streak record, which would break the mark Bower set (249:51) with the Cleveland Barons back in 1957.
Here’s more, from NHL.com’s Dave Lozo:
Brust broke camp with Abbotsford as essentially the team’s third goaltender, behind Leland Irving and Danny Taylor. Irving, 24, is considered a potential successor to Miikka Kiprusoff with the Calgary Flames, while Taylor, 26, won the starting job out of training camp and started seven of the Heat’s first 11 games.
Meanwhile, Brust was having a hard time earning a start. He played well in his first game, stopping 25 of 26 shots in a 4-1 win against the Chicago Wolves on Oct. 20. But that performance didn’t get him back on the ice until Nov. 1, when he blanked the Toronto Marlies 3-0 with a 22-save showing.
Twelve days later, Brust posted the first of back-to-back, 29-save shutouts against the Lake Erie Monsters on Tuesday and Wednesday. Now he’s on the precipice of history — and like any goaltender at any level, of course he’s shining the spotlight on his teammates for helping him reach this point.
Brust’s lone cup of NHL java came in 2006-07 when, as a 23-year-old rookie, he was summoned to the LA Kings after starting just three games at the American League level.
Since then, he’s had a nomadic journey with stops in Houston (AHL), Florida (ECHL), Binghamton (AHL), Straubing (Germany) and now Abbotsford.
Brust will have a chance to set the record this Friday when the Heat travel to Texas to take on the Stars.