There were a lot of people impressed by Alec Martinez’s overtime kick save of Corey Perry’s attempt with a seemingly open net in Game 1 – and several shared a dressing room with the 26-year-old defenseman.
“I especially liked it because it was partly my fault that he had to make that save in the first place,” Justin Williams said. “It was obviously a game saver. You could be down 1-0, and instead you’re up one.”
Martinez will bring his 1.000 save percentage into Monday night’s Game 2 at the Honda Center.
“I don’t think that’s usually in our stat line, but if they want to throw that in there, that’s fine with me,” he said.
“Actually, Darryl gave me a hard time. He said that my rebound control wasn’t very good. I told Billy Ranford, our goalie coach, that we should probably go over it today. Darryl told me I’ve either got to kick the rebound out wide, not up the middle, or at least cover it and get a whistle. Like I said, I’ll work on that next time.”
Williams added: “Usually when the puck hits him, you have to step on top of it.”
Martinez’s play in the Game 1 win wasn’t a joke. He logged a career-high 28:13, scored a power play goal, blocked four shots, including his overtime game breaker, and attempted six shots at the opposing net.
With Robyn Regehr and Willie Mitchell almost certainly out for Game 2, he’ll have the opportunity to once again compile a significant amount of ice time.
“I think everyone as a D-corps and as a team, you can’t replace one guy like that – if he’s not ready to go,” Martinez said about Regehr’s potential absence. “It’s got to be a collaborative effort, and I think everyone needs to elevate their game. This is playoff hockey, and you’ve got to do that anyway if you want to win.”
Alec Martinez, on the five-man defensive rotation in Game 1:
I mean, yeah, all five of us obviously played a lot more – with the exception of maybe Doughty – more than usual. I felt like we did a good job having a five-man rotation there. I think it’s important in situations like that just to keep it simple, keep your shifts short, and just make simple, hard plays.
Martinez, on where Corey Perry’s shot hit him:
Somewhere in the shin pad. I don’t know. I just tried to get in front of it, and maybe got a little bit lucky, too.
Martinez, on his save:
I guess I channeled my inner goalie playing in the driveway when I was younger. Like I said, I just tried to get in front of it. I know Quickie had just made a save, and he was trying to get over, so I just tried to go down and get in front of it.
Martinez, on any goalies he liked growing up:
Growing up in Detroit, I guess Chris Osgood was around. Patrick Roy, obviously he’s one of the best of all time- [Reporter: Well, you can’t be on both sides on that one, can you?] Well, maybe not. I was a kid…I had a good excuse.
Martinez, on the team’s heightened offensive output in the playoffs:
I think with playoff hockey, if you want to be successful, you’ e got to have scoring by committee, and regardless of your role on a team, we’re going to need big goals from a lot of different guys. Obviously it’s no secret that we were struggling with scoring before that Olympic break, and it think that was one of the focuses that we tried to take when we got back, was to generate more shots and generate more opportunities from those shots. I think it was just kind of a focus, and we’re getting scoring from a lot of different guys, and from our big offensive guys, obviously, Gabby last night came up really huge.
Martinez, on Anze Kopitar leading the NHL in playoff scoring:
That’s awesome for him. You know, I say it all the time, but I think he’s one of the best centers in the world. Maybe he doesn’t always get as much credit – I mean, I guess he’s nominated for a Selke – but he doesn’t get as much exposure being on the west coast. But he’s one heck of a hockey player.