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Thatcher Demko emerged as one of the NHL’s top goalies last season, and while he’s currently out with a lower-body injury that also slowed his start to this season, the time off provided an unexpected chance to sit down with the Vancouver Canucks star for his first Pro Reads.
Demko walked us through video breakdowns for close to an hour and did not disappoint in his ability and willingness to explain how he sees the game unfold in front of him, and how he chooses his depth, save selections and post integrations based on a variety of factors.

THE SCENARIO

We’ll kick things off with Demko with an odd-man rush against the Buffalo Sabres:

As this play gets over the blue line, what factors are you looking for as the goalie?
Are you treating this like a 3-on-2, or is it shaping up more like a 2-on-1?
Who is the most dangerous player at this point?
We know this second freeze frame gives away some of the answers above but since we already teased the “skate or slide” choice in the headline, you probably already had an idea what was coming. So, looking at the photo above, which one are you choosing? What factors go into that decision to come across on the up on the skates or down on the knees?

THE SAVE

Now watch the entire sequence and see if any of your answers change once the speed of the attack is added.

Seeing it in real time, are there any specifics about how Demko played this that stand out?

THE PRO READ

Now let’s check in with Demko to see how he read this rush as it transpired:

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