Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Alanah McGinley on 05/04/11 at 04:10 PM ET
From Dave Lozo at NHL.com:
Niemi didn’t post a GAA higher than 2.38 during a month the rest of the way and went 22-5-3 after the All-Star break with a 2.10 GAA and .917 save percentage. He had a few hiccups during the Sharks’ opening-round series with the Los Angeles Kings, but he’s been rock-solid in two games against the Red Wings.
“I felt pretty good both games,” Niemi said. “The start is going to be big because it gives you an idea of how you’re going to feel the rest of the night. If you can make a few good saves early, it helps. It gives me more confidence and makes my playing easier.”
After he was perhaps the most-hated man in San Jose last season, he’s the biggest reason for the Sharks’ late-season success.
“He’s certainly showed in the second half what kind of goalie he is,” Boyle said. “He’s been the backbone of our team. He’s such a calm guy back there.”
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