After long journey, Canucks' Martin is finally a winning goalie in the NHL

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It was J.T. Miller’s night. But it has been Spencer Martin’s week. Nine years since the Avalanche drafted him in the third round, Martin is finally a winning goalie in the NHL after leading the Canucks past the Jets. (By imacSportsnet)

, reminds him of Binnington. That’s a pretty lofty comparison, but an interesting one because Martin and Binnington have become friends as summer training partners in the Toronto area.gave Martin to the Canucks last summer for “future considerations” when minor-league GM and player-development director Ryan Johnson figured it would be a good idea to have a third goalie in the American Hockey League amid the ongoing pandemic.

Martin embraced technical changes brought in by Canuck goalie guru Ian Clark and minor-league instructor Curtis Sanford, climbed past younger prospects Mike DiPietro and Arturs Silovs in Abbotsford and was ready when he got a chance in the NHL for the first time since three appearances for Colorado in 2016-17.

“I stayed confident as best as I could,” Martin said of the last five years. “I know that there's a ton of good goaltenders and players in the AHL, too, so I knew that if I did get a chance, I would try to be as ready as possible. And then you look at some of the cases, like Binnington and just looking up to him and working with him in the summers, and thinking about how he was able to step in after waiting a little bit ... I kind of draw from that and try to be ready.

“The great decisions are we know we've got another goalie in the system that we can call up and have confidence in at any time,” Boudreau said. “He has played great. But ... Demko and Halak have proven that they're great goaltenders, so it's not going to be a difficult decision. When it does happen and we do have the two healthy goalies, we will know that we have a third just waiting ... to get to the NHL.


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