Jimmy Howard Stays Hot With Shutout Vs. Edmonton Oilers

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Jimmy Howard wants that new contract.

Howard didn’t have the greatest start to the season, but if his play of late is any indication, he plans on earning a lucrative new deal when he becomes a free agent this summer.

On Thursday night, Howard pitched a shutout against the Edmonton Oilers. They’re obviously not the greatest overall club out there, but they pack a pretty strong offensive punch. Howard turned aside all 22 shots he faced as the Detroit Red Wings managed the 3-0 victory.

It was the latest triumph in a pretty solid stretch of starts for the Detroit netminder. After allowing 15 goals in his first five starts of 2013, and struggling again a bit at the beginning of February, Howard has found his groove of late. And it’s proving extremely beneficial for the Red Wings.

Since his start on February 19th, in which he was pulled after allowing two goals on just seven shots and sustaining an upper body injury against the Nashville Predators, Howard has turned it on.

He’s allowed more than two goals twice in his seven starts since. In that pair of starts, he only surrendered three. Outside of those two, he’s been almost completely lights out. Over that stretch, he has two shutouts and two games in which he’s allowed just one goal. In his past three starts combined, Howard has stopped 90 of 92 shots.

Which means that this could be the beginning of a nice little hot streak for Jimmy Howard. Which comes at a perfect time for the Red Wings, who are finally starting to game some traction in the Western Conference standings.

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