Simeon Varlamov is not a robot.
The 21-year-old netminder played like a mechanical hero time after time in this series, leaving Penguins fans hoping he might develop a chink in his armor plating.
Early on, the odds weren't looking good.
Varlamov’s own version of “The Save” came on Sidney Crosby in the second period of the Capitals’ Game One victory. Varlamov, completely out of position and out of the crease, desperately threw his stick hand backward in an attempt to deflect a shot from the Penguins captain.
The puck caught squarely on the heel of his stick, and Varlamov was able to make the save.
In the end, Varlamov looked less-than-stellar and was chased from his net after giving up four goals. He didn’t get any help from the Capitals’ defensive corps, but that isn’t likely to ease his mind.
Still, the Game Seven failure should not diminish the incredible postseason successes Varlamov enjoyed. If anything, it should foster in him a greater desire to be perfect.
“He’s human,” Capitals Coach Bruce Boudreau said of his goaltender.
Funny. Sometimes it was hard to tell.
Best Quote of the Series: “The first goal could rattle a 21-year-old goalie, but the second one could kill a 21-year-old goalie.” –Varlamov, on the importance of not getting caught up on mistakes.