January 30, 2014
They will write tales of the goaltending performance Ben Scrivens treated Edmonton fans to on Wednesday night.
In fact, that might have been what the Oilers were busy doing all evening while their netminder was out there trying to keep them in the game, because they definitely weren't limiting his shots against.
Scrivens faced and stopped all 59 shots in his club's 3-0 win over the San Jose Sharks, an NHL regular-season record. In fact, he shattered the record, which was previously held by Mike Smith at 55.
The Sharks tried everything they could. Beyond the 59 shots on goal, they attempted another 41, with 19 missing the net and 22 blocked. Nothing got past Scrivens, who was flawless on this night. He made more saves than Microsoft Word's document recovery software, and he was just as automatic.
"I feel pretty good," Scrivens said after the game, when asked if he was wiped out, which would have been reasonable. "That's why you ride the bike and train and take care of your body."
But Scrivens wasn't crowing about his fitness level. "Anyone who knows me knows I'm probably not the top guy in the NHL [in terms of fitness]," he said.
In fact, he also downplayed the terrible performance by the team in front of him, giving credit, in effect, to his team's ability to keep San Jose on the perimeter.
"I thought a lot of their shots were from the outside," he said. "To say we got bombarded the whole night is maybe a bit misleading."
To what does Scrivens attribute his legendary performance, then? There's no arguing with history. He played extraordinarily.
"I had an awful, awful warmup," he said.
Ah, yes. Like in the theatre, it's all about getting the poor performance out in rehearsal.