|ERIK KARLSSON, Senators|
|BEST IN CLASS — SHARP ANGLE (BELOW CIRCLE, OUTSIDE DOT)|
Erik Karlsson shares with Brent Burns and perhaps no other high-scoring defensemen a propensity to score more often with the wrist shot than the slap shot.
At least that’s been the pattern this season. Eight of Karlsson’s goals have come via wristers, while just three have been slap shot blasts. The remaining five goals have come on snap shots — far more closely related to wrist shots than slappers.
His goal last night against the Red Wings explains quite a bit about Karlsson’s confidence in his wrist shot. If the Detroit goal was the eye of a needle, then he most definitely threaded it.
And not just that. His sharp angle shot came from outside the right circle and very nearly below it as well. What’s more, it seems that was his plan all along.
Karlsson took control of the puck at the right point. With a cluster of bodies obliterating the open space between him and the Detroit net, Karlsson lugged the puck down to the corner, where most opposing defensemen would be very welcome. But think twice with Karlsson.
Looking up, he still saw three bodies in between himself and the Red Wings goal. But he must also have seen a sliver of daylight in there somewhere as well.
Upon reaching the corner he let loose a sizzling wrister that would not be seen again by the naked eye until it was dropping from the far corner of the goal.
It’s not even as if goaltender Jimmy Howard was screened or whiffed on the puck. It was simply by him before he could raise a finger to stop it.
Karlsson’s versatility with the puck on this play was no accident. Of his 16 goals this season (excluding one ENG), he has scored from 12 distinct sectors of the offensive zone. If the Senators are to advance in the playoffs this year, expect Ottawa’s opponent to have difficulty containing him.
|4/4/2017 vs. Detroit|