The Ottawa Senators took a first step in the right direction by leaving the Atlantic Division cellar to the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday, and if they want to climb further in the standings, they will need a Cam Talbot in great shape. .
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The goaltender reassured many fans of the team by excelling against the Boston Bruins, who dominate the National Hockey League this season. His 49 saves in 65 minutes as well as his shootout performance allowed his team to leave the Canadian Tire Center with a 3-2 victory, their first success after three straight losses before the holiday break.
For head coach D.J. Smith, this exceptional evening from the veteran acquired from the Minnesota Wild last summer is a welcome one.
“He was very good to us for a long time. [...] Performance in net is part of the game and there were some nights where we got all kinds of chances to win and didn't. This time, it is a victory obtained thanks to the goalkeeper”, explained the pilot to the daily “Ottawa Sun”.
Talbot is also well aware that despite all the goodwill of his teammates, mistakes can sometimes happen. According to him, he must be alert and ready to do the job requested, regardless of the circumstances.
“You stay focused on the puck, doing everything to get your body in front of it. That's all I'm trying to accomplish, he described. I think I conceded too many throw returns leaving second chances to score. Luckily, we cleared the territory more often than not. The guys are doing a good job and fighting well.”
Talbot has had a few upheavals since the start of the campaign. A broken rib in particular kept him on the sidelines temporarily and his performance was dotted with good and bad times, his 9-8-1 record testifying to it. Still, with a .915 save percentage and three wins since Dec. 14, he seems to be on an interesting streak.
The “Sens” will visit the Washington Capitals on Thursday and the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday to wrap up the calendar year. Thereafter, they will evolve in front of their supporters four times in a row.