Braden Holtby played forward as a kid. But despite several attempts as a professional, Holtby has never scored a goal as a goaltender.
Saturday night in Los Angeles, Holtby did so during the NHL’s All-Stars Skills Competition. While participating in the Challenge Relay, Holtby clinched the win for the Metropolitan Division after scoring a goal on his fourth attempt. The Metropolitan All-Stars finished with a 1:21.700 time.
Early Friday, Alex Ovechkin arrived in Los Angeles for the 2017 All-Star Weekend and has kept himself busy ever since. In the afternoon, Ovechkin filmed a commercial for Beats By Dre.
In the evening, Ovechkin traveled to the Microsoft Theater in downtown Los Angeles ahead of the NHL’s Top 100 Ceremony. While he had a free moment before the ceremony, Ovechkin, who is expected to be on that prestigious list, posed with his Olympic gold medal-winning mother Tatyana, his wife Nastya, his older brother Mikhail, and his father Mikhail.
Wednesday, the NHL went into overdrive to promote the 2017 All-Star Game. This year’s three-on-three tournament is being held in Los Angeles, California. So the NBC, the NHL, and the NHL’s 30 franchises released pun-filled movie posters to promote their #HockeyGoesHollywood campaign.
Braden Holtby “starred” in Beauty and the HoltBeast. Meanwhile Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin stated “if they freeze it, we will skate” in Rink of Dreams.
The Washington Capitals held an optional practice in front of a full house, Saturday. Half the team, including Head Coach Barry Trotz, was not on the ice. Everyone was energized and in high spirits from the 6-0 shutout against the Chicago Blackhawks the night before.
Instead of a puck, Daniel Winnik started the warm-up with a perforated practice golf ball. Later Braden Holtby and Nate Schmidt shared a silly moment after Schmidt and Dmitry Orlov put a shot past the netminder. Holtbeast playfully slashed Schmidt’s legs, whose dramatics ensued for a fun set of images. Holtby’s face after his payback was priceless.
Post-practice Matt Niskanen even tried to hide from the camera and we shared a laugh. It was a great welcome back to the hockey grind. Enjoy these snaps from the morning practice.
Tuesday afternoon, the NHL announced that Alex Ovechkin and Braden Holtby were named to the 2017 All-Star Game in Los Angeles. The Capitals’ Mike Vogel interviewed each player after last night’s victory and asked what the nomination meant to them.
While Ovechkin looked forward to spending time with his family (who’s “finally” going this year), Holtby looked forward to visiting LA again and worrying less about his results in net.
“It’s fun because there’s not many times you can play hockey without stress,” Holtby said. “You can just go with the flow which is pretty cool.”
The Holtbeast has a very nuanced gameday routine which includes drinking 16-17 liters of water throughout the day. And like his former goaltending coach Olie Kolzig, Holtby is one of the more intense players in the league, holding himself to a high standard.
Transcriptions of both interviews are below.
Tuesday afternoon, the NHL announced their All-Star Game rosters and two Capitals made the Metropolitan Division roster: Alex Ovechkin and Braden Holtby. The nomination is Ovechkin’s franchise-record eighth selection to the game (2006-07, 2007-08, 2008-09, 2010-11, 2011-12, 2014-15, 2015-16, 2016-17) and Holtby’s second (2015-16, 2016-17).
So far this season, Ovechkin has scored 19 goals, ranking him eighth in the NHL, while Holtby sits seventh in wins (19), third in save percentage (.931), and tied for first in shutouts (5).
Capitals’ Head Athletic Trainer Greg Smith also received a nod and was named the Eastern Conference’s athletic trainer.
This year’s All-Star Game will be held at Staples Center on Sunday, January 29.
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