Nearing the end of the regular season, there isn’t much left for the Detroit Red Wings to play for this season, although they were still able to make history in a losing effort against the Dallas Stars Saturday night.
Despite falling 2-1 in overtime, goaltender Jonathan Bernier did everything possible to keep his team in the game throughout the entire way, as he made 50 saves and single-handily forced this contest beyond regulation. As a result, the 32-year-old has now become just the seventh netminder in franchise history to stop at least 50 shots in a single game since the 1955-56 campaign.
Jonathan Bernier (50 saves) became the seventh @DetroitRedWings goaltender to make at least 50 saves in a game since 1955-56.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) April 25, 2021
While Bernier was disappointed about not coming away victorious, Detroit’s most recent defeat certainly can’t be blamed on the veteran goaltender, especially since he stopped 20 of the 22 high-danger shots that Dallas created.
Considering the Red Wings’ skaters generated just six shots on net through the first 40 minutes, it’s clear they relied on their goaltender to bail them out far too often and this game could’ve easily been over long before the third period began. But luckily, the former first-round pick’s impressive performance kept this contest alive up until captain Jamie Benn potted the game-winner just 32 seconds into the extra frame.
Through 22 games this season, Bernier has performed to a 9-9-1 record, producing a 3.02 goals-against average and a .912 save percentage, which is his highest save percentage since the 2017-18 campaign.
With Bernier’s three-year, $9 million contract set to expire this summer, it’s still unclear if he’ll return for another season in red and white, however, his presence would surely be missed if he were playing elsewhere next season.