Edmonton Oilers minor-league goalie Ryan Fanti made one of his childhood dreams come true on Saturday night.
Tending goal for the ECHL’s Fort Wayne Komets against the Rapid City Rush on Saturday night, Fanti picked up the puck behind his own net, and stared all the way down the ice.
And targeting the Rush’s empty cage, Fanti shot the puck the length of the ice and right down the middle of his opponent’s net to make the score 6-3 on the night.
It was a shot that would make even Canada’s best curlers jealous.
Ryan Fanti fought two weeks ago. Now he's scored. The first goalie goal in @FWKomets history. He owns this place right now. pic.twitter.com/yGEPeLgQwF
— Justin A. Cohn (@SportsiCohn) March 26, 2023
And to top it off on the evening, Fanti even mixed in an oddly-timed bathroom break in the third period once his stomach was uh, grumbling.
“There’s no getting around it. Everyone goes through it. Once the third period happened, it just hit me. I was kind of battling through it. Once we hit the fith goal, I didn’t feel as bad for Kacz,” Fanti said about Corbin Kaczperski briefly replacing him for two saves, per Journal Gazette sportswriter Justin Cohn.
And as for the goal itself? Well, it really was a childhood dream.
“You don’t really get too many opportunities. It’s probably something I’ve dreamed about more than anything, including a fight or whatever it is, making big saves,” Fanti added, per Cohn.
Fanti is probably still a ways away from cracking the Oilers’ NHL roster, though: he’s sporting just an 0-5-1 record in .884 in eight games with the AHL’s Bakersfield Condors this season, while putting up an .897 save percentage and a 13-13-1 record with Fort Wayne. An undrafted free agent out of the University of Minnesota-Duluth, Fanti is on the first year of a two-year entry-level contract with the Oilers.
If he does ever make the NHL, he’ll be chasing the likes of Boston’s Linus Ullmark, who scored a goal against the Vancouver Canucks earlier this season.
Maybe one day, kid.