- Lindsay Berra
No team in the NHL has given up more shots on goal than the Colorado Avalanche, which makes goaltender Craig Anderson one very busy guy. This season, Anderson has played nine games in which he's faced over 30 shots. He's seen 35 five times, and in two games, he's endured over 40, with a high of 49 shots in an Oct. 24, 3-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. But Anderson doesn't seem to mind the perpetual peppering.
"Seeing a lot of shots gives you the opportunity to not think at all," Anderson says. "It takes your mind off the game, which is a good thing. It allows you to just react."
And Anderson reacts well. In fact, the more shots he faces, the better he plays. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Anderson has faced 40 or more shots 21 times in his career, with a record of 14-2-5. His record when he faces fewer than 40 shots is only 30-42-10. "When you get up to 35, 40 and 45 shots, the amount of scoring chances naturally goes up," Anderson says. "But our D does a good job of keeping the shots to the outside and allowing me to see the puck. If I can see it, it doesn't matter if it's the first chance of the game or the 40th, I can usually stop it."
The Colorado Avalanche have surged to the top of the NHL thanks to FA acquisition Craig Anderson's unflinching play when undersiege by enemy snipers. He's faced more shots than any goalie this season, but, oddly enough, he likes it that way.