Tampa Bay Lightning star Ryan Malone scored a spectacular goal on Saturday night against the Winnipeg Jets by flipping the puck over the defense, speeding past the opposition and finishing against goalie Ondrej Pavelec.
This is something guys do in pond hockey with their buddies, but to do it in an NHL game against top talent is really remarkable.
Malone talked about the goal via TampaBay.com:
"I just figured I'd try to flip it over him," Malone said of Clitsome. "In the new NHL, you really can't really interfere, so then it becomes a race for the puck and he has to turn around. Lucky, I was able to get it before he did."
The league's leading goalscorer was also impressed by his teammate's brilliance.
"It was a great play," C Steven Stamkos said of Malone's maneuver. "He outsmarted everyone on the ice — the old dump and chase but took it to a new level. I don't know if he's been practicing his golf game lately, but that looked like a good 60-degree wedge. He was our best player."
Chipping the puck over the top of the defense and running onto it is a scoring method you see soccer players do with each other quite often, but the strategy can certainly be effective in hockey if you execute it perfectly like Malone did here.
While it's probably not the goal of the year, there's no question that this goal from Malone is one of the season's best. The Lightning are having a tough season, but they continue to be one of the most exciting teams to watch on a nightly basis.