The top 16 Vancouver Canucks saves of 2013

We’ve counted down the top 30 goals from 2013 and now it’s time to give the goaltenders their due.

This is a slightly more difficult task. Every goal from the past year is recorded and archived, for goals are relatively rare occurrences in the grand scheme of things. Saves, on the other hand, are extremely numerous. As a rough estimate, there is an average of 60 shots per game and around 5 goals, which means saves outnumber goals by around 11-to-1.

As a result, there are some superb saves that get noted during the game and are immediately forgotten afterwards, at best buried in a post-game highlight package.

Some saves, however, are good enough to be uploaded to YouTube for posterity, whether by the NHL, the official Canucks account, or various fans. From those saves, we selected the 16 best Canucks saves of 2013.

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We need to make a bigger deal of Roberto Luongo’s save of the season

One of the main reasons I love sports is that they have the power to surprise. The absurd and unexpected are almost commonplace in sports, particularly in a fast-paced and chaotic sport like hockey. Roberto Luongo provided one of those absurd and unexpected moments on Tuesday against the Nashville Predators.

I expected much more fuss to be made of his incredible save on Colin Wilson, but it seems to have passed by largely unnoticed. In my mind, it’s the save of the season.

I honestly don’t have much to say about it. It was so flabbergasting a save that I can only point at it repeatedly while saying, “Look! See? Do you see it?”

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Video: Five minutes of Jim Hughson freaking out over Roberto Luongo saves

Jim Hughson can get a bad rap out East, what for a seeming proclivity towards Vancouver, but if you share that proclivity, he’s pretty enjoyable. Say what you will about his passion for Hockey Night in Canada’s fiftieth consecutive Battle of Ontatio; Hughson is at his best when he calls the Canucks and few complain when CBC taps him to do so.

Some of his finest calls come after Roberto Luongo makes a big save. Immediately followed by “Great save Luongo!” or “Oh what a stop by Luongo!”, it’s typically a highlight of the telecast (provided you can overlook the fact that the desperation stop was likely necessitated by a massive defensive lapse).

With that in mind, Youtuber HockeyFans101 has created this five-minute video. What separates it from other highlight videos? It isn’t just full of amazing Roberto Luongo saves — it’s full of Jim Hughson calling them.

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