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Tag: Connor Hellebuyck

Vezina Candidate Being Outplayed By Conn Smythe Favorite

Hellebuyck had no chance on this one, but the other two… (Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Like all sports, NHL award voting takes place before the postseason begins. This season, both the Vegas Golden Knights and Winnipeg Jets have several award nominees. One of which is Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck, who was nominated for the Vezina trophy along with Eastern Conference finalist Andrei Vasilevskiy, and amateur golfer Pekka Rinne.

Over four games against Vegas, the Vezina nominee has allowed 11 goals and has lost three straight conference final games. Not the trait of a goaltender of the year candidate. Neither is this.

It’s a great effort by Reilly Smith, that’s clear, however Hellenuyck has to have this one. Dustin Byfuglien misses his mark, Smith jumps on the puck and streaks for the net. Hellebuyck had a clear view of Smith’s approach tracking the puck immediately after the turnover. He had plenty of time to get into position. The Golden Knight pulled the trigger at the top of faceoff circle with a good wrist shot, not a great one. Byfuglien’s mishap began the breakout but the Jets goaltender could’ve bailed his teammate out.

Down a game in the Western Conference finals, a reliable goaltender makes that save. Hellebuyck did not.

And that wasn’t even Hellebuyck’s worst mistake of Game 4. He bobbled a seemingly harmless shot from Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, then allowed a rebound shot through the five-hole on Tomas Nosek.

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Jets, Hellebuyck Have Redemption On The Mind

We like when other goalies suck against the Golden Knights. (Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Last night the Golden Knights lost a frustrating game in Minnesota. Tonight, they face a Winnipeg team that scored seven unanswered goals against the Wild on Monday night. Since leaving the T-Mobile Arena empty-handed, the Jets rebounded by winning seven out of their next ten games. After being yanked against Vegas, goalie Connor Hellebuyck is on a roll winning five out of his last eight starts. Oh, and he’s been looking forward to his start tonight against the Golden Knights.

Because Hellebuyck got pulled against Vegas, I really expect him to get a chance…. it’s not a redemption game necessarily but I think Connor Hellebyuck is saying to Paul Maurice I want another crack at those guys. -Ken Wiebe, Winnipeg Sun on TSN 1290

The Sun scribe goes on to say Hellebuyck was disappointed by the way he performed in Las Vegas.

I always call them redemption games no matter what, if you lose you get right back on the horse and try again. You have that extra motivation and extra energy.”-Connor Hellebuyck, Winnipeg Goaltender on 11/10 following loss to VGK

Hellebuyck’s next start was a 4-1 victory at home against Arizona. He allowed one goal on 34 shots, and was very happy with his bounce back effort. Four days later, the Jets goaltender still had the Golden Knights game on his mind.

This was definitely my redemption game. Any time you get pulled you have to enter strong, and I’m glad the guys played well in front of me. -Hellebuyck on 11/14

Can we all agree the Jets goaltender has been obsessing over tonight’s game since November 10th? In Winnipeg, the Jets are 8-2-1, and Hellebuyck is undefeated in regulation (8-0-1). It’s a tough matchup regardless for the Golden Knights, but the redemption talk could be real. However, Vegas has only lost three games in a row once this season, so it’s possible they’re looking at tonight as redemption game themselves. Either way, someone will feel redeemed.

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