The Philadelphia Flyers earned their first win of the 2021-22 campaign last night against the Seattle Kraken. There were plenty of positives to take for Alain Vigneault, including some explosive offense from his new signings. But the talk of the town on Tuesday morning was undoubtedly the heroic effort at the crease from Carter Hart.
The Flyers goaltender stopped 23 of 24 shots fired his way, winning his 50th career game in the process. He also became the youngest goalie to debut Flyer to reach that milestone. The performance itself was strong, which is exactly what the doctor ordered after Hart’s struggles last season, but there was one particular moment that stood out.
Leaping like a salmon across the goal mouth to deny a Jordan Eberle screamer, Hart performed a spectacular double save that fired up the crowd and bench alike. It was that flash of elite talent that acted as a reminder of just how good Hart can be, and really got the team moving with a new sense of urgency.
His teammates spoke glowingly of the save and the performance after the game.
That has to be a save of the year candidate. That was something special. Almost immediately, it seemed to have changed things there and that’s when we started to attack little bit more from that point on. It’s great to get life from your goaltender like that and know that he can make saves like that when they matter.
100% if they score on that play it’s a totally different game and I think the shift right after we scored, it gave a big boost to our bench and we were playing four lines in their face and we were all over them and that’s something we talked about before the game and that’s what we did tonight.
Carter made some huge saves for us and gave us momentum. We made that save on- I think it was Eberle, you saw the bench, guys got a little more motivated and we started playing.
Carter was tested. He wasn’t tested last game really in that first period. He was tested, made the saves, gave confidence to our group, we scored, and in the second period we were able to get two early there.
Rome wasn’t built in a day and Hart won’t magically become a top-5 goaltender overnight. However, flashes of sheer reactive brilliance like that are enough to re-enforce confidence that he can reach that ceiling and become the goalie that the Flyers and their fans all know he can be.
Photo Credit: Alex McIntyre