The Capitals have juggled their starting goaltenders all season. Michal Neuvirth has an impressive 14-6-3 record in his 24 starts. Semyon Varlamov has started 12 games and even young Braden Holtby has been called upon for four starts this year.â†µ
Boudreau has seemingly been waiting for one of his two qualified starters to step up and grab a hold of the starting job. Neither has done it yet. Until tonight.
Coming off a shutout victory earlier in the week against the Canadiens, Boudreau trusted Varlamov with the start in the NHL Winter Classic today against the Penguins, and it paid off. Varlamov turned away all but one of the 33 shots that he faced tonight, making some very impressive critical saves. But perhaps more importantly, unlike his counterpart Marc-Andre Fleury, Varlamov didn't make any mistakes.â†µ
We knew going in that the Winter Classic was more than just a regular season game. For the Capitals, it also may have been the day that they found their starting goaltender.