It has been an eventful summer for former Washington Capitals netminder Philipp Grubauer.
Following a long playoff run that ended with the hoisting of the Stanley Cup in June, he was traded to the Colorado Avalanche as a restricted free agent later in the month and signed to a three-year deal worth $10 million.
Now, what do you do to celebrate accomplishments of this magnitude? If it was me, I’d throw a wicked party in Vegas with the Stanley Cup (just to rub it in the faces of the Golden Knights’ faithful) and then relax at a cottage until training camp began.
Grubauer had plans that were a little more unique. To begin with, he brought Lord Stanley’s mug to Germany and spent his day with the Cup in lederhosen.
Alright Grubi, well played. That’s definitely a look that you can pull off.
Relaxing wasn’t on his schedule though. In fact, he couldn’t seem to get himself away from hockey over the summer.
Although he now lives in Denver, the 26-year-old returned to Washington on a few occasions. While in the nation’s capital, he strapped on some rollerblades and played some pickup puck in front of the White House.
For the last 23 years, there’s been a group of individuals that call themselves ‘White House Hockey’ that play on Pennsylvania Avenue on weekends and some weeknights. Grubauer has joined the group on a few occasions over the last week sporting a navy Capitals t-shirt.
— Andrew Logan (@lgnsnd) August 22, 2018
According to some of the people he played with, he has pretty good hands.
“He was trying to set people up most of the time, not a ton of defense ironically,” said Andrew Logan to the Russian Machine Never Breaks.
No surprise there though. He’s been watching Nicklas Backstrom, one of the best passers in the world, for the past five seasons. Of course, you’re going to learn a thing or two if you get to see that every day.
Sadly though, yesterday’s ‘White House Hockey’ game was canceled by the Secret Service. Grubauer saw that as an opportunity though. He grabbed a net and hit the pavement with a few youngsters that came ready to play.
— Andrew Logan (@lgnsnd) August 29, 2018
The fun and games will soon be over for the German-born goalie though. Training camp in Colorado is just around the corner and Grubauer has a unique opportunity.
The Avalanche’s current starting netminder, Semyon Varlamov, hasn’t been as dependable as in the past. With some strong play, Grubauer may be able to challenge for the No. 1 spot between the pipes.
Grubauer has a career 2.29 GAA and 0.923 SV% in 100 career NHL regular season games and played in a season-high 35 contests during the 2017-18 campaign.
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