Pro-Reads: Carey Price – Save selection influenced by shooter’s options.

Our job as goaltenders is to be there when our team has a defensive breakdown. Carey Price knows that as well as anyone. In this pro-read Price has a low danger situation suddenly turn into a grade A scoring chance, effectively a 2-on-0 right in the slot. While the save was one for the highlight reels, what impressed was how he hedged his bets on the chance.

The Scenario

What looks like a very safe scenario goes bad quickly. With Carolina leading Montreal 1-0 in the second period, you could imagine as a goaltender being too relaxed here. Consider the scene in this image.

Price looks into the corner, already a very low-danger location for the play. He would see his teammate Artturi Lehkonen (#62) in possession of the puck, being pressured by Carolina’s Haydn Fleury (#4). Phillip Di Giuseppe (#7) has position on Montreal ‘s Jeff Petry (#26) but his back is to Price.

How quickly things can change.

Lehkonen throws the puck up the middle while the only Montreal defenders in the vicinity Paul Byron (#41) Mike Reily (#28) turn away from the puck. The result?

Carolina’s Brock McGinn (#23) steps up to grab the puck and a point blank scoring chance, while Di Giuseppe goes to the net and gives McGinn a wide-open back door opportunity.

Watch the brief video below to see the play develop:

The Save

For Price this is a grade A chance. He has to move low to high. The puck moves across the slotline. The shooter is all alone and able to walk down into the circle. To make matters worse, Carolina also has a backdoor option as Di Giuseppe haas slipped away from Petry and to the front of the net to Price’s right.

Now what is he facing? How as a goaltender do you play this situation?

What would you do?

Let’s watch the save as Price made it before he breaks it down for us.

The Pro-Read

Obviously it was a fantastic save and as members of the #GoalieUnion we love the extra bit of sauce he put on it with the splits and the windmill. But that’s not why this is in our ProReads series.

What impressed us about this pro-read was how Price dealt with the two options. It’s about how he responded to his read as much as anything. Have a listen and ask yourself, what did Price do that most goaltenders probably wouldn’t? How did he deal with the options?

Let’s hear what the Montreal goaltender had to say about it:


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