Thursday night was a special evening for the Nashville Predators.
After going 1-7 in prior tiebreakers, the team won its first penalty shootout of the season and took one on the road against the Philadelphia Flyers.
The moment that reverberated, however, was the diving heroics of Carter Hutton. The 28-year-old Canadian managed a wild, lunging save in the second period that prevented what appeared to be a certain Flyers goal.
Hutton attempted to clear out a Flyers dump-off but ended up in an awful position when the puck took a strange bounce. Flyers winger Michael Raffl scooped up the loose puck and took a gimme shot on an empty net.
Miraculously, Hutton was able to dive around the open goal and make a miraculous glove save. Speaking with members of the media after the game, Predators defenseman Roman Josi said he was astounded by Hutton's athletic save.
"That was sick," Josi said, per ESPN. "That's going to be on the highlight reel for a long time. He was more of a soccer goalie on that save."
Here’s a GIF of the save, courtesy of SBNation. It’ll never get old.
Indeed, it was a nifty and timely move on Hutton's part, considering the Predators had just brought in Devan Dubnyk to shore up their goalkeeping, per the Canadian Press. Dubnyk remained on the bench for Thursday night's game, for which we can all remain grateful.
Had the former Edmonton Oilers goalie started, the world would've missed out on Hutton's athletic bit of handiwork.
Is it the save of the year? Possibly.
Then again, it’ll have to contend with Jhonas Enroth’s full-extension blocker save from earlier this week.
Granted, a defender got a piece of that shot, allowing Enroth to send it wide.
Regardless, goalkeeping in the NHL has elevated to Matrix levels this January.
I can only forecast this trend of wild saves to continue and for the brunt of it to come at the Flyers' expense. They continually find themselves being put out by goalkeeping heroics.
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