Just when it seemed as if Dwayne Roloson
couldn't get any better, he saved his best for last.
The 41-year-old goaltender didn't look anything like the second-oldest player in the League as he stopped 36 shots in Tampa Bay's 1-0 victory against the Penguins on Wednesday night in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series.
The Lightning rallied from a 3-1 deficit in the best-of-seven series thanks largely to the play of Roloson in the final three games. He stopped 94 of 98 shots for a .959 save percentage in the three elimination games.
Roloson finished the series with a 1.77 goals-against average and a League-best .949 save percentage. He's now 6-0 in his career in elimination games.
Afterward, Roloson talked about his performance with the media.
Q: What was the key tonight to you coming up with this shutout?
Our guys did a good job keeping things to the outside and did the smart things when they needed to get pucks out.
Q: Did you go into Game 7 thinking you were going to get a shutout?
Do you ever go into writing an article figuring you're going to win the Nobel Peace Prize? No. It's just one of those things where it had nothing to do with me. It was all about our guys who did everything humanly possible to prevent any good quality shots.
Q: How important was it to weather the storm in the first period when the Penguins were constantly on the attack?
Especially here, you got to try to survive and go out and play your game. We understand we're going to be in situations they're going to be all amped up at their home rink. You just to go out and control your own emotions and settle down -- and we did that. We played our style, we played our system, we did everything we had to do in that first period.
Q: Has it sunk in that you were able to pull of this comeback from down 3-1 in the series?
No, it hasn't. Fortunately or unfortunately, whatever way you want to look at it, it's my third time doing it. It's great, but at the same time, we stuck with our system, we battled through it and we just got to forget about it and get ready to go Friday.
Q: Was there any player on the Penguins you keyed on in order to hold them to 1-for-35 during the power play in the series?
Not at all. Our coaching staff was amazing, especially (assistant coach) Wayne Fleming, who did a lot of video, a lot of scouting to understand what we wanted to. A lot of our guys did what they had to do to keep things to the outside and let me see shots.
Q: How much did this team grow during this series?
It's baby steps. We've got a lot of guys who haven't been through it. As long as we keep on growing and learning and doing the things we have to do to win hockey games, it's good to see the guys are growing and doing it quickly.
Q: Did you say anything to the team before the game?
I didn't say a word. I just did my thing, the guys did their thing. They did a good job.
Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DaveLozo