EDMONTON -- Arturs Silovs looked somewhat bewildered when asked to comment on individual saves after backstopping the Vancouver Canucks to a 4-3 win against the Edmonton Oilers in Game 3 of the Western Conference Second Round at Rogers Place on Sunday.

The Canucks goalie made 42 saves in the win to give Vancouver a 2-1 lead in the best-of-7 series, so he could be excused for not remembering all of them.

“I’m just basically playing my game, practicing my system with our goalie coach [Ian Clark], I’m just trying to manage my game,” Silovs said. “I don’t really think about it, sometimes you have to play in a hostile place, especially having to win away games that are so important. I just think it’s fun to play these games.”

Silovs was not expected to play for Vancouver entering the Stanley Cup Playoffs with Thatcher Demko and Casey DeSmith ahead of him on the depth chart. He’s kept the net after taking it from DeSmith, who stepped in when Demko went down with an undisclosed injury after Game 1 of the first round against the Nashville Predators.

Silovs is 4-2-0 in six playoff starts with a 2.65 goals-against average and .908 save percentage since getting the call in Game 4 against the Predators. He went on to win two of three games in that series, outplaying Juuse Saros in the process and is now getting the better of Edmonton goalie Stuart Skinner, who was pulled after two periods.

VAN@EDM R2, Gm3: Silovs snags the puck at the goal line

With every strong performance he is writing another chapter in the book of rookie goalies to make a huge impact in the playoffs following in the footsteps of Ken Dryden, Pete Peeters, Mike Vernon, Cam Ward, Jordan Binnington and Jake Oettinger.

“‘Arty’ has been great for us this whole postseason and he’s a guy that competes hard,” Canucks forward Brock Boeser said. “I think you see it in each playoff game, he’s been great. We have to continue to support him, block shots and do anything we can to help him out.”

The 23-year-old native of Riga, Latvia, played the majority of the season with Abbotsford of the American Hockey League, before being called up to Vancouver late in the regular season and making four starts. Silovs was 3-0-1 with a 2.47 goals-against average and .881 save percentage.

“His personality is a very quiet guy, but he’s a quirky guy, he really is,” Canucks coach Rick Tocchet said. “He always has a smile on his face, and he’s told what to do and he does it. The moment is not too big for him.”

Silovs was the main reason the Oilers were unable to tie the game after falling behind 4-2 at 17:35 of the second period. He stopped 13 shots in the second and 21 in the third. He also had a little help when Edmonton hit the goal post on four occasions.

“I felt confident, the guys got my back in Game 1, so I had to have them today,” Silovs said. “Everyone is resilient blocking shots and really high scoring chances they had, and our guys managed to block a lot of them and it’s a big credit to them too.”

Silovs got off to a rough start against the Oilers. In Game 1, Vancouver fell behind 4-1 at 13:11 of the second period, but Tocchet stuck with his young goalie and the Canucks were able to battle back and win 5-4.

“You give the hook to goalies in different situations to give the team a lift and things like that,” Tocchet said. “I just didn’t feel he deserved to come out and I didn’t think it was his fault. I thought we were playing pretty good, so I thought when we made it 4-2 going into the third and we made a little bit of a push and the guys rallied around him and said, ‘We got you,’ just like he had our back in some games -- my thinking was that I didn’t think it was an appropriate time.”

The confidence Tocchet showed in Silovs is resonating throughout the rest of the team. Little was known of Silovs, outside of his outstanding performance with Latvia at the 2023 IIHF World Championship when he was called up April 21.

“He’s a quiet guy, so I haven’t gotten to know him that much,” Boeser said. “Just seeing him around the rink and in the games, he competes hard and I’m sure he has the inner belief in himself and I know we have the belief in him as a team, and when he’s making some of those saves back there, it fuels our group.”

With Demko’s status uncertain, the Canucks appear ready to ride Silovs as far as he’s able to take them. The belief in the goalie continues to grow with every game.

“I think he showed that at the end of the season he played some games for us against some solid teams, and he was fantastic,” Boeser said. “I think that just continued to build and he played great against the Preds too and we have trust in him back there.”

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