During his time in the KHL, Alexander Radulov was one of the most lethal players in the game, using a combination of creativity and skill to put together some incredible moments. He’s only been able to show flashes of that in Montreal thus far, but Radulov pieced it all together for an absolutely brilliant goal on Tuesday.
Radulov’s dazzling play started in the neutral zone midway through the second period, and it was a heads-up play by the Canadiens winger that made his goal possible. Cutting into the zone, Radulov realized he was being defended, one-on-one, not by one of the Senators’ blueliners, but instead by Mike Hoffman. Radulov exploited his defender by using a gorgeous move, moving the puck to the outside before slipping it around Hoffman to spin the Ottawa winger around and nearly knock him off his feet.
Past Hoffman — and with audible an “Ooh!” coming from the crowd — Radulov cut toward the net, dipped his shoulder, found space on the far post past netminder Craig Anderson and slipped the puck home:
It’s quite something to see Radulov use his skill like that, because usually he’s on score sheet under the assist column regardless of how much he embarrasses a defender. In 18 games this season, that was only the fourth goal for Radulov, but he’s tied for second on the club with 17 points.
Radulov’s more known for his playmaking ability and that has been the staple of his game throughout his time in the KHL, as he racked up 323 assists to his 169 goals over 391 games in the league. However, when Radulov does score, he’s usually doing so in rather spectacular fashion. So this may be one highlight-reel goal, but it’s worth watching just about every tally he scores.
As for Hoffman, don’t feel too bad for him. He may have been the General to Radulov’s Globetrotter on this one, but Hoffman finished the outing with a goal and three points as the Senators skated to a 4-3 victory.
Want more in-depth features and expert analysis on the game you love? Get 10 issues of The Hockey News magazine for just $15.99!