(Puck Daddy presents its annual look back at the year in hockey. Check back every day through the New Year for our many lists and hot takes.)
The NHL introducing 3-on-3 overtime may catch on with leagues around the world, but the shootout is still here, giving players an opportunity to show off their talents in the 1-on-1 battle.
We’ve seen many creative shootout moves over the years, and while goaltenders try and have a book on opposing shooters, there are just some dekes that cannot be stopped.
Here are the Top 10 Shootout Goals of 2015. Please list anyone we missed, or your own list, in the comments!
10. Alex Tuch, Minnesota Wild
It may have happened during a summer developmental camp, but Tuch’s move, followed by his confident, swagger-filled celebration helped him kick off this list.
9. Aleksander Barkov, Florida Panthers
Barkov got tricky and made many think of Pavel Bure’s preseason goal in 1996 with his stick-to-skate deke on Jacob Markstrom.
7. Linus Omark, Salavat Ufa
Several times a year Omark’s name will resurface after a highlight-reel move goes viral. He’s done this for years now, so it was no surprise to see him go into the trick bag in 2015 for this one in the KHL against Ak Bars Kazan.
6. Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado Avalanche
The slow method seems to work for some, like MacKinnon here. He approached Kari Lehtonen like a snail, then sped up with fine stickwork making the Dallas Stars netminder react first, a costly move.
'Johnny Hockey' has only been in the NHL for a little over a year, but he’s provided a number of great highlights so far. This one, coming in a shootout against Craig Anderson of the Ottawa Senators, shows off just how crafty the diminuitive forward can be.
4. Victor Crus Rydberg, HC Vita Hästen
Crus Rydberg is an Islanders prospect currently playing in Sweden’s Allsvenskan and netted what would be the winning shootout goal in spectacular fashion. Smooth, measured and confident. Also, top shelf.
The Chicago Blackhawks forward is a master at the “speed in, slow down” shootout move, so it was no surprise to see him make Marc-Andre Fleury look silly with it. If you’re Fleury, you’re just waiting with anticipation for Kane to make his move, and then when he does and you try and take a swipe with your stick… nothing but air and the red light comes on behind you.
2. David Schlemko, Calgary Flames
Yes, David Schlemko is on this list. Not a name you’d probably expect, sure, but this Nilsson-esque move he pulled on Tuukka Rask made him worthy of inclusion. It was so good it even got a parody stamp honor.
1. Nikita Gusev, KHL All-Star Game
The KHL All-Star skills competition always has something fun come out of it. (Remember when Vladimir Tarasenko had that puck on a string?) Gusev added to that legacy with this fantastic spinning lacrosse move shootout goal.
Tomorrow: Top 10 people of controversy in 2015
Previously on the Year in Hockey 2015:
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