Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg netminder Jakub Kovar has had a busy season. One of only four goaltenders in all of the KHL to play at least 22 contests, Kovar has seen the third most minutes of any netminder.
Luckily for Kovar, though, the Avtomobilist defense has been strong and kept him well insulated, so he hasn’t had to make too many 10-bell saves. But against Zagreb Medvescak, Kovar was tasked with making one of the biggest stops of his season so far and the Czech netminder answered the challenge.
After Kovar made an initial save on Medvescak’s Stefano Giliati, the rebound spilled out to the front of the net where Patrick Bjorkstrand was waiting to hammer it into the open net. Bjorkstrand wasted no time getting the puck on net, but as it was sailing towards Kovar’s cage, the netminder got into the splits and flashed the leather:
Kovar, 27, has never made his way over to the NHL or any North American pro leagues, but he did spend some time in the OHL. During the 2007-08 season, one year after being selected in the fourth round, 109th overall, by the Philadelphia Flyers, Kovar played 36 games split between the Windsor Spitfires and Oshawa Generals.
Internationally, Kovar has suited up for the Czech national team at the World Junior Championships, World Championships and Olympics.