My another attempt in translation- the article from “Sovetskiy Sport” (I tried to preserve the original style as much as possible, so that nothing is lost in translation).
BOBROVSKYALMOST HAD A SHUT OUT, BUT “FLYERS" LOST ANYWAY
The winner of the first game had won the series between Philadelphia and Buffalo for the last 8 meetings. Than, are the Flyers doomed?
Philadelphia goal keeper Sergey Bobrovsky played his first ever NHL plays off game. He had made one small mistake, but Sabres beat Flyers.
The question still lingers if Bob is the starter. Bobrovski is the 8th playoff starter in Philadelphia for the last 14 years. Everyone knows Philadelphia weak spot is goaltending. One can remember experiments with Checkmanec, Emery, last year playoff story with Bouche and Leighton; the latter led the team to the SCF, but was placed on waivers next season.
The Flyers approached this playoff season with unusual tandem. Sergey Bobrovsky – the Philadelphia scouts discovery; an undrafted player that had been recruited from the worst team in KHL. And Bobrovsky made the best of his chance. Brian Bouche- the club veteran, who has become accustomed to the back up role.
The finish of the regular season was quite a roller coaster ride for the team. Some games the skaters were excellent, but the goalies failed. Other times, the goal keepers would safe almost everything, but the team could not score. It’s difficult to describe all the arguments that took place in media, on forum boards and in local bars about who should be a starter in playoffs. More conservative would bet on Bouche. Younger crowd remembered Bob’s remarkable start and how he won the fans. Yes, the Russian was not reliable lately, but he is only a rookie! And he is very talented.
The head coach Peter Laviolette resolved the argument swiftly by announcing that he had selected Sergey as a starter. His attempts were clear- to let 22 year old to get used to the idea that he is a playoff goalie and to let him gain confidence.
However, to be honest, I thought that the coach would change his mind. Bobrovsky was pulled form the last game of the season after letting in 3 quick goals. I have not ever seen Sergey more frustrated and irritated before. The press held its breath… but Laviolette confirmed that his bet is on Bobrovsky.
Bob, Bob and only Bob
Bobrovsky: No interviews!
I can’t even imagine Bobrovsky’s feelings when right before the match the lights were turned off and 20,000 people roared in support of their favorites.
It was obvious that Bobrovsky was nervous. But he played well. I would even say, perfect. If not only for one moment. 46th minute. Philadelphia turns over a puck in their own zone. Bobrovsky deflects the shot from a blue line. But Kaleta beats 2 defenders to be the first to the puck.
And what is it a terrible Bobrovsky’s fault? I would not say so. But the fans started booing Flyers closer to the end of the game.
Sergey was so upset and frustrated with his game that he refused an interview. In general, you do not do such a thing in NHL. You can ruin your career by ignoring the press.
“I can’t talk about anything right now” asserted Bobrovsky. We win, and then we will talk. I am not satisfied with myself. Team lost. That’s the reason”
Jeff Reese: Good Job, Sergey!
I hope to have a conversation with Bob after the second game. Meanwhile I talked with Jeff Reese- Flyers goalie coach.
J.R.-I think that Sergey was excellent tonight. Unfortunately, he can’t score goals. Reese made a sarcastic remark toward Flyers offence.
J.R. - One goal on 25 shots is a good outcome. I know that Sergey is not happy, but nobody expects him to have shutout in every game.
Q: Were you nervous about him?
J.R: It’s not nervousness, it’s impatience. I wanted to see how he performs in a new role. Playoffs is a different level of hockey. I saw him being nervous in the beginning, but quickly got into a norm. I am satisfied with his performance, also the whole team played defense well tonight. But could not score on Miller, who took away our victory.
Q: You have trained many goalkeepers. How psychologically strong is Sergey comparing to others?
J.R: Time will tell. But Sergey has an ability to control himself after letting in a goal. For example, in his playoffs debut, under the enormous pressure, Bob had not lost his focus for a second.
Don’t forget that Sergey had come into absolutely new country and new culture, Lone, with no English. He plays in the city, where fans are very loyal, but merciless at the same time. Especially toward goal keepers- we all know the passionate debates around this position. But I foresee a bright future for Bob. He succeeds in everything he applies himself to. Meanwhile, he and I will get ready for the second game. We will develop a wining plan, and make an attempt for Bob to score on Miller- laughs Reese, again jabbing at the Flyers offence.