Friday, 19 February 2016

Memorable Fifth Goal?

There were many questions as to why the Buffalo Sabres would accept David Legwand in the trade for goaltender Robin Lehner, but it was clear that Legwand hadn't aged well in terms of remaining a productive center in the NHL. His nine goals were the lowest of his career at that point, and he slid down the depth chart for the Senators. He appears to be in the same situation for the Sabres where he's playing down the lineup, but he picked up his fifth goal of the season tonight.

With Buffalo leading 1-0 against the Columbus Blue Jackets tonight, Legwand does what any player should do while shorthanded and needing a change: he dumps the puck down the ice high into the air. This allows he and his linemates to change while the opposition recovers the puck. Except that Columbus doesn't recover this one.
I'm going to say that Columbus head coach John Tortorella probably never expected Buffalo to score a shorthanded goal 180-feet from the Columbus net, but David Legwand's fifth goal of the season somehow eluded Joonas Korpisalo and found the back of the net. Buffalo would take a 2-0 lead on the goal en route to a 4-0 victory so it's not like that goal changed the dynamics of the game in a large way, but the distance the goal was scored at is something with which Korpisalo and Tortorella won't be happy.

This may very well be David Legwand's last season in the NHL, and that could be the last goal he scores in the NHL. If it is, it might be the longest "final goal" in any player's career who isn't a goalie. It won't go into the record books if it is, but it's a pretty cool distinction if it is.

Of course, all it would take is for Legwand to score another to wipe out that distinction. I'm sure the Buffalo Sabres and David Legwand himself wouldn't turn down another goal from the veteran.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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