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May 2011 24

Is he always out of position or just an aggressive goaltender? Whatever the reason, Tim Thomas of the Boston Bruins always finds a way to make big saves, including this stick robbery on Steve Downie’s shot at an open net.

A slap shot from the point by Tampa Bay defenseman Eric Brewer conveniently bounced off the boards right behind Tim Thomas who likes to stand far in front of the goal. The puck stopped on right winger Steve Downie’s stick who had an empty net in front of him until a diving Tim Thomas stopped the goal with a stick save.

“With the way the new boards are now a days in all the arenas, you got to be on your toes with the big bounces and the big bounce came out and, you know, it was just a reaction and a desperation and I’ll admit I got a little bit lucky there.”
- Tim Thomas on his save

Any similarity between this excellent playoff save and the one that Roberto Luongo had on Ben Eager in the second round of the 2009 NHL playoffs? Let’s not forget Tim Thomas’ fabulous spinning pad save on Vincent Lecavalier earlier in this very series.

The Bruins won 3-1 and are ahead of the Lightning 3-2 in the series after Game 5. Thomas finished up the night at an excellent .971 save percentage with 33 saves on 34 shots. One more win will move the Bruins to the Stanley Cup Final.

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