Matt Hendricks has blocked 41 shots in 36 games this season, which means he’s usually stepping in front of at least one shot every game in an attempt to stop it before it gets to the net. Thursday was no different, but it was almost one of the most regrettable shot blocks of Hendricks’ career.
With Edmonton already down 2-0 to Dallas, Hendricks stepped in front of a shot from Stars blueliner Alex Goligoski, who was steaming into the Oilers zone and wound up before unleashing a slap shot. The puck didn’t get past Hendricks, though, because the Oilers winger had opened up his stance to cover more area. Unfortunately for Hendricks, opening his stance also made him crouch to the ice, which resulted in him taking the slap shot right to the groin:
The way Hendricks falls over — slow and already in pain — together with the audible groan from the crowd tells you about all you need to know regarding the type of shape Hendricks was in upon stopping the blast. The crowd even gives a second groan when they see the replay. At the 29-second mark of the video, even Goligoski looks a bit scared for Hendricks.
Thankfully, Hendricks was all right and able to take a regular shift in the third period. He even took the opportunity post-game to make light of the situation, thanking his cup manufacturer for “saving (his) bacon” on the shot block: