Brian Rolston said he would do it again. In fact, he said he's had success before going for the slap shot on a shootout attempt.
Just not tonight.
Rolston had a chance to push tonight's shootout with the Toronto to a fifth round, but his slap shot went off the left shoulder of goaltender Vesa Toskala and crashed off the glass. That give the Maple Leafs a 3-2 victory tonight at Air Canada Centre.
The Leafs won the shootout, 2-1, with Jason Blake scoring the deciding goal in the top of the fourth round on a spinaround backhand. I'll get to that a little later, but first Rolston's slap shot.
“It got his shoulder,” Rolston said. “It was good save. He played very well tonight for them. We had a couple of lapses in the game, but they played a strong game and their goaltender was very good tonight.”
Rolston said he has had success with the slap shot in shootouts before.
"I have acutally, but [tonight] it caught his shoulder," he said,. "It is what it is."
Rolston thought he might be able to surprise Toskala, but was unsuccessful.
"He was deep on all the other ones, so that's what I was doing," Rolston said. "But I think he was kind of knew that I was doing it. It was a good save and he made other good saves on Patrik [Elias] and Zach [Parise]. He played good tonight."
Devils coach Brent Sutter thought that Rolston missed the net, but said he had not seen a replay of the shot before he spoke to reporters after the game.
"I haven't seen a replay, but he didn't hit the net, did he?" Sutter said. "If it doesn't hit the net, it's not a good play."
Rolston is now 9-for-25 for his career in shootout attempts. That was his first as a Devil.
Now to Blake's shootout winner. Devils goaltender Scott Clemmensen wasn't crazy about it, but conceded that it''s been become an accepted move in the NHL. He said that Blake did make contact with him before he scored.
"When you come in ,you back in," Clemmensen said. "You can't see that he's doing it. You inadvertently do it when you're going to pull a move like that. But It's a legal goal."
Should it be?
"It's not for me to determine," Clemmensen said. "As a goalie, I would like to say, 'no'. But the league has set the precendent that it is legal and that's it."
Clemmensen was unsure if Blake came to a stop, but that wasn't his biggest issue with the play.
"I don't think that's so much the case," he said. "I think the case is more of the puck moving forward and backward and then forward again. That's the whole issue there. And then maybe inadvertent contact with the goalie. Obviously, he didn't mean to. But when you turn your back like that it's going to happen.
"Like I said, the first time somebody tried -- the first year of the post-lockout -- they ruled it was a good goal."
Devils coach Brent Sutter said he did not have a problem with Blake's goal.
"I've seen it happen before and they counted it and obviously the refs felt it was OK," Sutter said. "I've seen it happen before watching goals on TV and stuff."