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NHL - US Sports: Shesterkin still has more to prove

Despite outperforming his opposite number to help the New York Rangers to a 2-0 lead in the Eastern Conference Final over the Tampa Bay Lightning, a modest Igor Shesterkin says he hasn’t won the goalie battle with Andrei Vasilevskiy yet.

The Rangers, 2/5 to reach the Stanley Cup for the first time since 2014 and 3/1 to be crowned eventual champions, ended Vasilevskiy's sensational run of 17 wins in the play-offs following a defeat on Friday, winning 3-2 in Game 2 after a 6-2 victory in Game 1.

What: New York Rangers vs. Tampa Bay Lightning, Eastern Conference Finals Game 3

Where: Amalie Arena, Tampa

When: 20:00, Sunday 5th June, 2022

How to watch: Premier Sports or bet365 Live Stream

Odds: NY Rangers 6/4, TB Lightning 10/17

Over the 17-0 record following a loss, 27-year-old Vasilevskiy had a .942 save-percentage, 1.47 goals-against-average (GAA) and five shutouts dating back to 2020.

Rangers finding a way past Vasilevskiy

An impressive run that had to come to an end at some point, Vasilevskiy has allowed nine goals on 62 shots in the series against the Rangers, while at the other end 26-year-old Shesterkin has stopped 66 of Tampa Bay's 70 shots.

A finalist for the Vezina and Hart Trophya, Shesterkin has allowed two goals or fewer in eight of his past nine games.

He holds a .929 save-percentage and 2.60 goals-against-average (GAA) in 16 play-off games. Vasilevskiy has a .921 save-percentage and 2.58 GAA in 13 games so far.

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Shesterkin has taken 17 play-off games to record 10 wins, the quickest of any Rangers goalie in history and he has also won eight home games in a row.

Shesterkin lauds "best in the world"

The Russian, though, still believes he has more to prove against his countryman, who won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player in the play-offs last season.

Shesterkin commented to the media after Game 2: "I still stand by my opinion. Everything is as I said before: Andrei is still the best goalie in the world. You can't forget that the series is four wins, so you just have to keep playing."

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