Halak Continues to Exceed Expectations for the Bruinsby Jamie Gatlin December 6, 2019 0 comments
When the Bruins signed Jaroslav Halak two years ago, they hoped he would be a solid backup to Rask.
The former Islander was coming off one of the worst seasons of his career and would be replacing Anton Khudobin, who excelled under Bruce Cassidy. Since coming to Boston, Halak has surpassed all expectations. Along with Tuukka Rask, he has formed one of the best goalie duos in hockey.
Although the regular season is far from over, Halak joined elite company Tuesday night amid another spectacular regular season.
In the Bruins 2-0 win over Carolina, Halak made his 500th career start. The veteran netminder was brilliant, stopping all 24 shutouts he faced. It was Halak’s second shutout of the season and seventh since signing with the Bruins. The win also extended Boston’s win streak to eight games.
Additionally, so far this season, Halak owns a 7-1 record with three overtime losses. He has a save percentage of .934 and a goals-against-average of 2.14. The Slovakian native has already faced 366 shots and stopped 342 of them. Although Halak has only appeared in 11 games, he is tied for the league lead in shutouts and has the third-highest save percentage.
Gotta glove it to Jaroslav Halak on this one. 😍 pic.twitter.com/Zfyn6vgjoY
— NHL (@NHL) September 19, 2019
While Rask has gotten off to an impressive start Halak has not only been one of the best backups but goalies in the league. His play has allowed the Bruins to rest Rask and makes them hard to beat regardless of who is in the net. His value, however, is truly reflected when looking at his Bruins career so far.
Since signing In Boston, Halak has won 29 of his 48 starts. In that span, the Bruins have gained 65 of 98 possible points. He has a save percentage of .935 in five on five situations, which is the third-best among active goalies with at least 2,000 minutes played. Halak has also done well in high danger situations with a save percentage of .879.
While Halak’s numbers place him among the leagues best his impact on the Bruins has been essential to their success. Rask no longer has to play sixty regular-season games a year allowing him to stay fresh for the postseason. Before Halak, that had been an issue with the goalies such as Jonas Gustavsson and Niklas Svedberg.
With the Bruins atop of the Eastern Conference, the play of Halak will be one factor that determines how far this team goes. That should be no issue as the Bruins backup is currently on track for a career year. For the Bruins, it is the perfect result as Halak has been everything they hoped for and more.