Price on Fire Heading into the Olympics
With the Canadiens struggling heading into this week, Price's excellent play between the pipes for his hockey club turned things around in a hurry. After a strong week, Price and his team find themselves on a three game winning streak and just one point out of the third spot in Eastern Conference.
While Price's play is obviously a good thing for the Habs, it might end up being even better for Team Canada as they head into the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. Vancouver Canucks' netminder Roberto Luongo may have helped Team Canada win Gold at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, but right now, it is hard not to notice just how well Price has played over his last several games.
According to Arpon Basu of LNH.com, Price has stopped 203 of 210 shots in his last six starts. If you're counting at home, that is a .967 save percentage.
Looking at that stat alone, it is clear that the puck looks like a beach ball to Price. He has been positionally sound, is doing a good job of controlling his rebounds, is making both first and second saves and in all, is showing that in order to beat him right now, one is going to need to have a perfect shot.
This is good news for Team Canada. While Canada may have a rock solid defensive corps, there will more than likely be times when they will be beaten and will need their netminder to come up with the big save.
Right now, Price is doing that and more for his Canadiens' hockey club. During his team's three game winning streak, Price has stopped 100 of 103 shots and each game has been relatively competitive.
Price has also done a good job of keeping his goals against down over his past six games. In those six games combined, Price has allowed just seven goals, never allowing more than two goals in that span.
To put that in perspective, prior to these past six games, Price allowed 24 goals combined in his previous six starts. Not only did he allow a lot of goals, but he also won just one of the six games.
This shows that Price can rebound quickly. In the Olympics, there is not a lot of time to dwell on a bad goal or a loss and right now, Price has the right attitude and is showing that he can get his game back in a big way rather quickly.
Lastly, Price's strong play should be showing Team Canada that while Luongo certainly got the job done in the past, Price is more than the goalie of the present for his nation. He has been the better goaltender this season and with seven years under his belt of playing under an extreme amount of pressure in Montreal, is ready to show that he can do the same for Team Canada.
Should Price get the chance to show his stuff and carry his hot streak into Sochi, Team Canada might once again find themselves winning the Gold Medal when all is said and done.