Vitek Vanacek wins first NHL game, gets shaving-cream pie to the face – Russian Machine Never Breaks


It was a big Friday night for 25-year-old Czech rookie Vitek Vanacek. After years in the Capitals farm system, he finally made his NHL debut against the Buffalo Sabres. He stopped 30 of 31 shots to deliver a win for his team and secure the first W of his NHL career. His teammates sung his praises after the game. He was given a post-game award.

And then, naturally, he got a shaving cream pie to the face.

“I’m so impressed with how he handled everything,” teammate Nicklas Backstrom said of Vanacek after the 2-1 win. “He’s very calm back there. . . I think Buffalo played way better than us. They really attacked. [Vanacek] won the game for us.”

Backstrom’s not wrong. The Sabres were much more dangerous on Friday night, generating 2.86 expected goals according to Natural Stat Trick. And the only one that beat Vanacek was a deflection off Tom Wilson.

The Sabres might disagree with that characterization though.

Nonetheless, the Capitals awarded Vanacek with the Cobra Kai headband for the game.

In his own press time, Vanacek was circumspect, calling his NHL debut a dream come true. Then he was promptly pied in the face.

The culprit? You guessed it. Tom Wilson.

RMNB Coverage of Caps at Sabres

Screenshot courtesy of Washington Capitals 

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