We already knew it here in Nashville, and the rest of the NHL’s fans agree.
Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne’s first-career tally has been voted the Goal of the Year in the 2020 NHL Fan Choice Awards. The netminder received 42.3 percent of the votes beating out Connor McDavid (25 percent), Andrei Svechnikov (20 percent) and Matthew Tkachuk (12.7 percent) to earn the accolade.
More than two million votes were submitted from NHL fans all over the world to determine the winners of 20 categories, and Rinne’s margin of victory was greater than most.
“For sure [it’s a dream come true], I’m not going to lie,” Rinne said following Nashville’s win in Chicago back on Jan. 9. “I understand it might be a once-in-a-lifetime thing, so I really enjoyed it. It was an awesome feeling seeing the puck go in… But I’m trying to see it and then [Roman Josi] and [Nick] Bonino, I think they were going nuts, and it was pretty cool. I just threw my hands up in the air and tried to try to act as cool as I can.”
Rinne was the first goaltender to score since 2013 and became just the 12th goalie in NHL history to be credited with a goal. There have been 15 goalie goals scored in League history, and perhaps even more impressive, Rinne is one of only seven netminders to actually shoot it himself. (The others occurred with a team accidentally putting the puck in their own empty net on a delayed penalty or in extra-attacker situations, and the respective goaltenders were the last to touch the puck.)
There’s never a bad time to relive the goalie goal. Once more, here’s Rinne in all his glory, as well as some other clips featuring the Finn.