Atlanta Thrashers Goalie Ondrej Pavelec Stops 50 Shots in Win Over Ottawa

Warren ShawCorrespondent IIOctober 31, 2009

ATLANTA - OCTOBER 22:  Goaltender Ondrej Pavelec #31 of the Atlanta Thrashers against the Washington Capitals at Philips Arena on October 22, 2009 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Thrasher goaltender Ondrej Pavelec is making believers out of the teams he has faced so far this year.

The Atlanta goalie stopped 50 shots en route to a 3-1 win over the Senators on Saturday.

The 22-year-old netminder was outstanding and the catalyst behind the Thrashers victory over Ottawa.

"He was fabulous," Thrashers coach John Anderson said. "One of the best games I've ever seen in goal. He made us win."

Before this season, Pavelec had played 19 games in the NHL and wasn't expected to be the Thrashers' starting goalie. But Pavelec has made the most of No. 1 netminder Kari Lehtonen's absence caused by back surgery.

His latest effort helped the Thrashers (5-4-1) snap a four-game losing streak.

"We didn't play well at all," said Rich Peverley , who scored the Thrashers' second goal. "At times it felt like we were just standing around. (Pavelec) handed us the win; he was tremendous."

The Senators badly outshot the Thrashers 25-3 in the third period, but couldn't figure out how to get the puck by Pavelec.

The Thrashers, who have struggled early in games, took control by jumping out to a 2-0 lead after two periods on goals by Zach Bogosian and Peverley. Maxim Afinogenov also scored for Atlanta.

Pascal Leclaire, who stopped 18 shots, "A couple of bounces didn't go our way, and it was just unfortunate," Leclaire said. "The guys played a great game and we just ran into a hot goalie."

Both Atlanta goals were scored after the Senators failed to win faceoffs in their own end.

On the first goal, Marty Reasoner beat Nick Foligno cleanly and dropped the puck to Bogosian, whose shot got past Leclaire before the goalie reacted at 12:13 of the first period.

"It was the start we wanted to get," Bogosian said.

The Thrashers made it 2-0 in the second despite being outshot 18-5. Peverley won a draw, and after a duel along the boards, Nik Antropov  passed the puck out front where Peverley got a shot off. The puck bounced in off Ottawa defenseman Chris Campoli with 8:09 left in the period.

Ottawa entered the game with the fourth-worst faceoff winning percentage in the NHL while playing without Jason Spezza, who is injured.


Three star selections








Game Scoring


   1.  Bogosian (12:13 - 1st) ,

   2.  Peverley (11:51 - 2nd) ,

   3. Afinogenov (18:29 - 3rd )


1.    M. Fisher (PPG, 15:33 - 3rd)