PHILADELPHIA – Jake Voracek started… then paused.
He didn’t have a plan — perhaps because he was recently ran over on ice and left to get checked out in the locker room — as he began his descent on net with a chance to end the shootout and clinch the Flyers comeback. Instead, he tried to put himself in the mind of the opposing team and goaltender Anders Nilsson.
Then it hit him.
“I was thinking about the five-hole but kind of realized that I’m doing that maybe every time,” Voracek said. “So he might have thought about it and just tried to hold him up a little bit on the forehand and he went down and I put it up.”
DON’T CALL IT A COMEBACK
THE FLYERS WIN IN A SHOOTOUT
WHAT IS LIFE? pic.twitter.com/FsJfLLrk7l
— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) October 26, 2016
Is there a way of figuring out if Voracek always shoots five-hole on shootouts? That would be quite bothersome, but when thinking back on it, he typically does fire of a snap shot low when he comes in; if he says it to be true, then it probably is, too.
Voracek entered last night 9-for-31 (29%) in shootouts over his career.
While the new approach benefitted him, perhaps the one thing that made all the difference was what was going on inside his head.
“When I feel confident, I know I can score,” Voracek said.
Right now, that’s exactly what Voracek has going for him. A year removed from beginning the season on a 16-game goal-less drought and a further slide of two goals in 29 games, Voracek is certainly feeling differently.
He has three goals and five assists for eight points in seven games.
“He is a warrior. He is a tough guy,” said Claude Giroux, who joked around to the media, “don’t tell him I said that.”
Don’t worry, Claude, I think he’s well-aware of the impact he’s having right now.
“I’m pretty confident since the World Cup, so I know what I am capable of when I feel good,” said Voracek following a practice last week. “I feel strong in the skates which is important for me.”
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