What's buzzing:

Buzzing The Net

Senators pick Chris Driedger gets WHL’s first goalie goal in 10 seasons (VIDEO)

Neate Sager
Buzzing The Net

View photo

.

Driedger is fifth in the WHL in goals-against average (Larry MacDougal, The Canadian Press)

For Chris Driedger, the night where he scored the Western Hockey League's first goalie goal in 10 years had less of a happy ending than the cancelled sitcom Happy Endings.

In the first period on Saturday, the Ottawa Senators-drafted goalie made a save for the Calgary Hitmen at about the same moment officials signalled a penalty. Driedger's Kootenay Ice counterpart, Mackenzie Skapski, went to the bench as play continued, with defenceman Jagger Dirk sending the puck around the boards to forward Zach Franko. Franko tried to pass the puck to the point, where the extra skater Jaedon Descheneau was joining the play. Except it missed everything except the Ice net at the far end of the rink. Since Driedger was the last Hitman to touch the puck, it's his goal.

The goal was originally given to Chase Lang, but was credited to Driedger following the first period.

They all look like slapshots the next day, though. Driedger is the sixth goalie in WHL history to be credited with a goal. The last was the Prince George Cougars' Jordan McLaughlin, who pulled off the rare feat on March 6, 2004 vs. the Vancouver Giants. McLaughlin's marksmanship sealed a 4-1 win.

Alas for Driedger and Calgary, the hockey gods' ironic punishments division was extra creative Saturday. Hitmen fans have ritually (and cheerfully) chanted, "Kootenay sucks!" early in games after the Saddledome plays the ubiquitous "charge!" refrain, regardless of who is the visiting team. It seems odd to the uninitiated since the entire population of Cranbrook, B.C., could almost fit inside the Saddledome. It started after Kootenay upset Calgary in the 2000 playoffs to sabotage its hopes of winning back-to-back WHL titles and has continued to this day; it's 100 per cent playful.

Yet there is still that element of big city teasing the small market that might not sit well. It's just odd how the rest of that game played out. After the Ice's own goal, Calgary scored a short-handed goal directly off the ensuing faceoff. From the point that the goal was changed to Driedger onward, the Ice controlled play and won 5-2 thanks in part to a three-assist night from top NHL draft prospect Sam Reinhart. Odd, that.

So Driedger, who stopped 26 of 29 shots, was presumably dissatisfied by the outcome. Regardless, the 19-year-old is having a steady season with Calgary, ranking fifth in the WHL with both a 2.55 average and .918 save percentage. He's also in unique company as a goal-tallying 'tender in the Dub, since long-time NHL netminders Olaf Kolzig and Chris Osgood were the first two to do so back in 1989 and '91 respectively.

The Canadian Hockey League's last goalie goal came April 23, 2012, when Mark Visentin scored to seal a Niagara IceDogs' playoff win over the Ottawa 67's.

Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.

View Comments (3)
  • Adebayor excluded from Spurs' Europa League squad

    Adebayor excluded from Spurs' Europa League squad

    (Reuters) - Tottenham Hotspur forward Emmanuel Adebayor has been dropped from the Spurs' Europa League squad as the out-of-favour striker remains in limbo at the club. Spurs were keen to part ways with the Togo international during the summer … More »

    Reuters - 13 minutes ago
  • Los Angeles bid is 'new start' for all, says LA mayor

    Los Angeles bid is 'new start' for all, says LA mayor

    By Karolos Grohmann BERLIN (Reuters) - Los Angeles' 2024 summer Olympics bid will be a new start for the United States as it attempts to land the first summer Games since 1996 and put the disappointment of Boston's failed effort behind it, the … More »

    Reuters - 19 minutes ago
  • Froome withdraws from Vuelta after heavy crash

    Froome withdraws from Vuelta after heavy crash

    Chris Froome's hopes of pulling off a rare Tour de France-Vuelta double are over after he was forced to withdraw before Thursday's 12th stage after a heavy crash on Wednesday left him with a fractured bone in his foot. The twice Tour winner and … More »

    Reuters - 20 minutes ago
  • Froome pulls out of Spanish Vuelta with broken foot

    Chris Froome has pulled out of the Spanish Vuelta after fracturing a bone in his foot. Froome, who had been hoping to win the Vuelta after winning this year's Tour de France, fell early in Wednesday's 11th stage and looked to be in pain for the … More »

    AP - Sports - 21 minutes ago
  • Los Angeles mayor pitches 2024 Olympic bid to IOC president

    Los Angeles mayor pitches 2024 Olympic bid to IOC president

    LONDON (AP) -- Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and U.S. Olympic officials have wasted no time in taking their bid for the 2024 Games to IOC headquarters. … More »

    AP - Sports - 4 minutes 14 seconds ago