The Vegas Golden Knights, and Robin Lehner shutout the Washington Capitals Monday night and won 1-0. Lehner recorded 34 shots for his 17th-career shutout. But one player that was a little frustrated with this was Capitals captain and Stanley Cup Champion Alex Ovechkin. After all, Ovechkin’s seven-game point streak was snapped.
In the second period on an extended five-on-three powerplay for the Capitals, Ovechkin ripped a shot that hit Lehner directly in the face. Lehner stated that the shot hit him so hard that he felt it in his cheekbone and the goaltender stopped play to look at his mask. Shockingly, the shot had broken the cage of his mask and he went to the bench to put on his mask from last season as a backup.
“It was probably the hardest shot I have ever taken to the head. It was a little scary, as I felt the cage bend… He broke my cage. It was a little scary. You felt the cage kind of bent in to the cheekbone a little bit. I was lucky it wasn’t a little bit harder,” said Lehner.
At the 2018 NHL All-Star Skill Competition, Alex Ovechkin’s slap shot clocked in at 101.3 miles per hour, which was the fastest since Sergei Fedorov in 2002. For comparison sake that is about four-fifths the speed of a skydiver diving belly-to-Earth (thanks random facts website).
Thankfully we will never have to know just how horrific the injury could have been for Lehner had the mask completely broken. Makes you stop and think about just how crazy goalies were before 1959 as they didn’t wear a mask!
Lehner will likely get the night off Tuesday as the Golden Knights travel to Raleigh to take on the Carolina Hurricanes. Laurent Brossoit, who just came off of an injury will likely get the start for the Golden Knights.