With two starts on the season, Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard has a .961 save percentage, bringing his career save percentage to .916. This comes along with two wins for the Wings. The season opener at Little Caesars Arena marked win 200 for Howard, who collected 37 saves in a 4-2 victory over the Minnesota Wild.
37 saves and a Little Caesars Arena debut = 200 NHL wins for Jimmy Howard! pic.twitter.com/2TZLJmRAlA
— NHLPA (@NHLPA) October 6, 2017
In his second win of the season (201st of his career), Howard tallied another 37 saves in a 2-1 shootout victory on the road against the Ottowa Senators. Forward Martin Frk scored his second goal of the season in the third period to put the Wings up 1-0. But less than a minute later, the Senators tied it up. Frans Nielsen got the game-winner in a shootout.
On the winning goal, Nielsen said, “A little lucky. It’s kind of my go-to (move), the backhander. I fanned a little bit on it, but it was good to see it go in.” A stop by Howard secured the victory for Detroit.
In his career with Detroit, Howard has had his ups and downs. He was drafted in the second round of the 2004 NHL Draft by the Red Wings, playing his first full season with the team in the 2009-10 season. After seven seasons in the NHL, Howard sought help from Detroit goaltending coach Jeff Salajko to help improve his play.
“The speed of the game has gotten so fast and every single guy can shoot the puck, shoot it hard and shoot it quick,” Howard told USA Hockey Magazine.
“I felt that I needed to reel myself back in and not play as aggressive as I did early on in my NHL career.”
His efforts appeared to be paying off at the start of last season. While Howard only played in 26 games due to injury, he was able to put together a solid season with a career-high save percentage of .927. With Petr Mrazek‘s unimpressive preseason performance, it’s no surprise to see a healthy Howard as the Wings’ starting goalie.
All indications pointing to Jimmy Howard starting tomorrow in Dallas for the #RedWings.
— Winged Octopus (@WingedOctopus) October 9, 2017
The Wings remain on the road for their next three games, and Howard is expected to be in net for Tuesday night’s game against the Dallas Stars at 8:30 p.m. (ET).