You know you’ve done something special when you’re getting a standing ovation after a road game.
That’s exactly what happened in Edmonton on Sunday, and Craig Anderson deserved those cheers.
Even if you ignore the personal factors, shutting out the high-octane Edmonton Oilers is quite a feat. And it’s not like the Oilers were pulling any punches in the Ottawa Senators’ 2-0 win.
But, of course, context makes a great performance something special, and more emotional.
Senators GM Pierre Dorion revealed why the goalie had left the team for personal reasons: Nicholle Anderson, Craig’s wife, has been diagnosed with cancer. Even so, with his team hit dealing with goalie injury issues, she gave him her blessing to play on Sunday.
In his first game back with an emotional team in front of him, Anderson generated a 37-save shutout. He’s now on a two-game shutout streak. It’s the sort of accomplishment that’s as awe-inspiring as it is tear-jerking.
His teammates were showing him support heading into the game:
… But with Cam Talbot staying after the game to show his support for Anderson after the game, and Oilers fans cheering his great performance, it seems clear that he’s in the thoughts of the hockey community as a whole.