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Mark Messier of the North American All-Stars scores the winning against goalie Nikolai Khabibulin
VAP98011801 - 18 JANUARY 1998, VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA: Just like the old days, Mark Messier of the North American All-Stars scores the winning against goalie Nikolai Khabibulin of the World All-Stars on a pass by teammate Wayne Gretzky late in the 3rd period at Vancouver's GM Place, Jan. 18th. The final score was 8-7 for the North American All-Stars. UPI RW/HEINZ RUCKEMANN
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Nikolai Ivanovich Khabibulin (Russian: Николай Иванович Хабибулин; born January 13, 1973) is a Russian professional ice hockey goaltender currently playing for the Edmonton Oilers of the National Hockey League (NHL). He has previously played for the Winnipeg Jets, Phoenix Coyotes, Tampa Bay Lightning and Chicago Blackhawks. He is often known by his nickname The Bulin Wall. Other nicknames include The Nyet Minder and The First Tsar.

Khabibulin's abilities have been recognized with four appearances in the NHL All-Star Game and two Olympic medals. He became the first Russian goalie ever to win the Stanley Cup in 2004, winning the title with the Lightning.

He was selected in the ninth round of the 1992 NHL Entry Draft by the Winnipeg Jets. In the 1993–94 season Nikolai played with the touring Russian Penguins and by the start of the NHL season in January 1995 was playing in the NHL. In 1996, he moved with the Jets to Phoenix, Arizona, where they became the Coyotes. In his five seasons with the Jets/Coyotes franchise, he played in 60 games three times (including two instances playing 70 games), a heavy workload for a goaltender. Although the Coyotes made the playoffs each of these years, some claimed that this heavy workload led Khabibulin to be fatigued for the playoffs, contributing to the team's failure to make it to the second round of the playoffs.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Nikolai Khabibulin."
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