Pro-Reads: Toronto’s Andersen odd-man chance with options
Our Pro-Reads series continues this week with Toronto Maple Leaf Frederik Andersen. Only a week into this series when we bumped into Andersen while visiting Vancouver, we found out that the Leaf workhorse was already aware of our first Pro-Read with Carey Price and he was excited to add his insights to some of his saves for our members. Today we present the first of several saves he broke down for you.
Andersen faces pressure from Buffalo’s Jeff Skinner driving down low. Skinner has already beaten one Leaf defender while two additional Sabres are driving the net in the right half of the zone. With his second defender applying pressure to the puck carrier as well, Andersen faces three threats with little support.
As you look at this snapshot from the scenario what do you notice? What would you do?
Once you get to the video you’ll see that Andersen processed quite a bit almost instantaneously from this scenario…the shooter and his options, the motion of the puck, the two threats, his d-man’s actions and how ultimately he’d have to respond.
Before looking at the full scenario though, please take a moment to consider what you see here and make a few mental notes.
Of course, Anseren has to process this all in real time at NHL game speed – he doesn’t have the luxury of freezing the action. But this is still an excellent exercise to engage in for goaltenders of all ages.
OK, you’ve had a chance to study the freeze-frame of the situation and to consider what you might notice in the blink of an eye. Now let’s see the full save play our before hearing what Andersen had to tell us.
So, how much did his initial read play into this incredible save?
Watch Andersen as he breaks it down for you. You’ll get insights into his read, his preparation for the most-likely save and all that went into making it a successful save from a technical perspective.
The understanding that Skinner posed only a pass threat was essential to Andersen “loading up” for the push across. His technique really stood out for us. Even if a goaltender recognizes what the most likely situation was, Andersen’s patience in the blink of an eye to fully engage his head in tracking the pass, and then setting his body angle as he pushed across allowed him to make a very deliberate glove save – one that can certainly be seen as highlight-reel worthy, yet calculated by Andersen to the point that he would have expected to come up with this save despite the very high-danger scoring threat.
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