Anders Nilsson’s desperation stick save is a thing of beauty

Former New York Islanders goaltender Anders Nilsson made an unbelievable stick save on Sunday night. With a rebound floating out in front of the net, Oskar Osala had a wide-open cage before Nilsson contorted his body to reach back and rob the winger of a goal.

It takes a couple viewings to really appreciate how outstanding this save from Anders Nilsson is.

Nilsson, the former New York Islanders netminder who now plays for the KHL’s Ak-Bars Kazan, made this stop in Sunday’s 3-1 loss to Metallurg Magnitogorsk, and if it weren’t for some incredible acrobatics, that very well could have been a 4-1 loss. Check out just how much Nilsson contorts his upper body to reach back on this stop, and you get a new appreciation for the save.

If you happen to pause the video at just the right time, you can see Nilsson’s upper body turned to face the net, while his pads are facing almost entirely in the opposite direction. Nilsson was a man possessed on this save.

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Then, not only does Nilsson turn aside the Oskar Osala attempt with his paddle, he gets himself back into position to stop the ensuing blast from Chris Lee. The pair of stops, loss aside, is an incredible piece of netminding from Nilsson. The 24-year-old’s NHL rights were traded to the Chicago Blackhawks from the Islanders as part of the Nick Leddy trade on Oct. 4.