The New York Islanders will be starting Ilya Sorokin in net tonight, and while the team around him has struggled mightily he's been a rare bright spot for them so far in this young season.
Sorokin heads in with a 5-5-2 record on the year sporting a .925 save percentage and a 2.54 goals against average. Over hiis 34 NHL starts in his career that brings him to a .921 save percentage and a 2.30 goals against average.
According to Natural Stat Trick, Sorokin has a goals saved above average of 3.17 which is 16th in the league at 5v5.
Right now Sorokin looks like the better goalie over Semyon Varlamov. Varly has started out 0-4 with an .881 save percentage and a 3.46 goals against average. It's not all on Varlamov for his struggles but the steadier presence has been Sorokin without question.
This is a rare positive as eventually, Ilya Sorokin will take over as this team's starter. Varlamov at age 33 with one year left on his deal isn't the future, Sorokin is and he's looked every bit as good as a franchise goalie should be.
In Sorokin's last time out against Toronto, he allowed three goals but made 37 saves in the game for a .925 save percentage. Even in losses, he's been playing well enough to keep them in games as their offense plays to the tune of a goal per game over their last seven games played.
With a likely COVID impacted lineup tonight, the Islanders are going to need an A+ effort from their young goalie. Luckily, more often than not, they've gotten that from Ilya this year.
In Sorokin's career, he's 9-2 at home with a .917 save percentage and a 2.15 goals against average. Last year against the Penguins in the playoffs it was Ilya Sorokin's play that saved the season, maybe he can do it again for New York this year too.