AHL Game Night 11/3: Admirals at Penguins

How good would Norfolk's goaltenders be if they could get even a smidge of goal support?

NOR-1
WBS-2 (SO)

Jonathan Boutin stopped 38 of 39 shots in overtime and regulation before falling 2-1 in the penalty shot session. In 4 games this season Boutin now has a 1.76 GAA and .950 save percentage and still, somehow finds himself at 1-1-1 on the season.

First Period
NOR Lampman, (1) (Wanvig, Milley), 17:41 (PP)

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
WBS Goligoski, (2) (Ardelan, McLean), 2:49 (PP)

Overtime
NO SCORING

Shootout
NOR- Jones
WBS- Brent, Taffe

Game sheet from TheAHL.com.

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I just hope for the sake of

I just hope for the sake of the fans of Norfolk that some of these young kids we drafted this year and come in. Boutin is too good to deserve the results he gets.

Boutin

We need to get Boutin an advocate in the organization. He's too good not to have SOMEONE in hockey operations tooting his horn. He's completely forgotten because some of the Lightning's scouts and personnel people are Helenius guys, some of them are Ramo guys, a few are Koshechking guys... other than me (and I certainly don't count) there are no Boutin guys.

It's crazy to me this young man is never even in the conversation when people talk about the goaltenders in this organization. Every year he gets better and his athleticism is unquestionable.

Boutin deserves some respect

I cannot quarrel with the general take on Ramo's future with the the Bolts. He has proven himself at the AHL level and seems to have all of the tools.

Helenius has some real promise and Kosechkin is having a down year in Russia. But despite their potential, neither of them have yet to show it at the AHL level. And it does take goalies longer to develop.

But Boutin has shown he can play at the AHL level last year and so far this year. His numbers are outstanding. Tonight, he faced more rubber than an interstate highway and kept the ADs in the game. They were outshot big time by WBS, but Boutin single handedly kept them in a position to win.

The Bolts should not let Boutin get away from them. His performances this year deserve some recognition and respect of the Bolts staff. Right now, when Ramo returns, Boutin should not be sent down to MS. And I say this knowing Munce has not done poorly in his own right. But of the two, Boutin deserves to stay in Norfolk.

Upside

I could see Munce topping out as a seldom played backup behind a solid #1 in the NHL. Boutin might have some starter upside in him. I've believed it since even before we drafted him.

Chances

What are the chances Boutin gets a shot this year? With Ramo out and the team struggling, is there any chance the excellent play of Boutin gets him a short term callup?

If...

If he continues to set the world on fire and Ramo's not ready and one of Tampa's two guys gets hurt - then probably. And there's probably an outside chance if he keeps up this pace and TB is desperate they could bring him in.

While recognizing what Boutin is doing right now, the asterisk next to his name for me is he has never been able to hold a number one job. Not in Halifax, or PEI (where he was handed the reigns and lost them to a rookie) or in his minor pro career. While this criticism may not be fair, I'd like to see him be "the man" for a season somewhere.

In Fairness

He's never had the ball as a minor pro. As a rookie they initially chose Coleman over him, which I believe was a mistake, and as a soph he was stuck behind Ramo and, lest we forget, Sean Burke. The closest thing he's gotten to holding the reigns was to take over the Falcons in the last few months of the last couple of seasons AFTER the teams had already imploded.

I'm hoping the Admirals find a way to get this thing around .500 and stay in contention for a playoff spot and when the inevitability of Ramo getting recalled finally happens Boutin gets the opportunity to be the man in meaningful games for the first time in his pro career.

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