On the same night Juuse Saros was named to his second-ever NHL All-Star Game, he wowed the hockey world by saving an astounding 64 shots against the Carolina Hurricane on Thursday, Jan. 5.
His 64 saves were tied for the third-most in a game in NHL history and were the most by any League goaltender since Ron Tugnutt made a record 70 on March 21, 1991 for Quebec.
Saros has solidified himself as a top goaltender in the NHL and began to show his worth even before Preds legend Pekka Rinne retired. Saros joins Rinne as the only Predators goalie to be selected to more than one All-Star Game.
After Thursday’s game, the 27-year-old goaltender left Carolina with a 14-10-5 record, 2.77 goals-against average and .918 save percentage. His 28 starts are tied for the fourth-most in the NHL. Among League goaltenders who have played in at least 20 games this season, Saros ranks fourth in saves (816) and is tied for ninth in save percentage (.915), According to Natural Stat Trick, he has also made 212 high-danger saves, tied for the fourth-most in the NHL.
Since Nov. 12–an 18-game span for Saros–Nashville’s netminder is 10-4-4 with a 2.40 goals-against average and .926 save percentage, making at least 30 saves in 10 of those appearances, including a season-high 43 on Dec. 23 vs. Colorado. He owns a 12.34 goals saved above average (GSAA) according to Natural Stat Trick, the third-best mark in the NHL. GSAA measures the goals prevented given a goalie’s save percentage and shots faced vs. the NHL average save percentage on the same number of shots.
Saros’ recent run was bolstered by a seven-game point streak (6-0-1) from Nov. 12-Dec. 1 that saw him stop 214 of 230 shots against for a .930 save percentage. He has also proven to be one of the League’s top goaltenders in the first period of games since Nov. 12, leading NHL goaltenders with a 1.17 goals-against average and .965 save percentage in the opening frame.
He made his 250th career NHL appearance on Jan. 3 against Montreal, becoming the first goaltender from his 2013 NHL Draft class and the eighth Finnish-born goaltender in League history to reach the mark.
The 2023 NHL All-Star Game, which will be broadcast live on ABC, is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 4 at FLA Live Arena in Sunrise, Florida. The Skills Competition will take place on Friday, Feb. 3 on ESPN.
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