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Islanders 3 Bold predictions for series vs. Washington Capitals

Garnet Hathaway #21 of the Washington Capitals and Ross Johnston #32 of the New York Islanders (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Garnet Hathaway #21 of the Washington Capitals and Ross Johnston #32 of the New York Islanders (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /
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Goaltender Semyon Varlamov #40 of the New York Islanders (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Semyon Varlamov Steals Series

Level of spice: 3/5

This series is going to mean something a bit more for Semyon Varlamov.

After three years with the Capitals where he averaged a 0.917SV% and 2.39GAA Varlamov was hoping for a pay raise from the Caps. The Caps didn’t want to give him such a large raise and shipped home to Colorado for a few picks.

Add that motivation to the strong defensive system that Varlamov plays behind and the fact that Barry Trotz knows every trick and in the Washington Capital book, and you have the ingredients for a series goalie.

Stealing a series sounds like a spicy take, but Varlamov did essentially that against the Florida Panthers. We just talk about him less.

Through four games against the Florida Panthers, Semyon Varlamov was a brick wall in nets (except on the penalty kill). At 5on5, Varlamov averaged a 0.958SV% and a 0.96 GAA. Less than a goal against at 5on5 per game.

The Florida Panthers just couldn’t get anything through the Russian netminder. His play in nets was a big reason the Islanders were able to progress past a talented (at least in terms of forwards) Florida Panthers team in four games.

With the Islanders healthy and rested, there’s no reason to suggest that the netminder can’t put up a similar performance against the Capitals in this first-round series.

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