Sunday, February 7, 2010

The State of Canadian Goaltending




Here are the statistics for NHL goalies born in Canada since the start of the New Year. Minimum 10 games played.

(GP W-L-OTL AVG)

Martin Brodeur
17 8-8-1 2.44

Roberto Luongo
15 10-3-1 2.38

Marc-Andre Fleury
12 6-5-0 3.05

The three Olympians have been playing well if not spectacular. Luongo has the best numbers but has himself hardly been outstanding. This past weekend in Boston was the first time in a long while that the Canucks stole a win mainly due to Luongo.
Brodeur's numbers are pedestrian for the likes of him. My theory on who starts game one of the Olympics is that Babcock will give Luongo the start in the first game against Norway to simply get it out of the way. Brodeur would then start against the Swiss and each subsequent game. I believe Babcock and the rest of Canada's brain-trust would like to roll with one 'tender, and they will after giving BobbyLu his one moment in the sun.

So, if one of the Olympic three were to get hurt, who would be the injury replacement?
Cam Ward
16 9-7-0 2.21
Ward was perhaps the hottest goalie from Canada prior to getting hurt this past weekend. His injury is technically day-to-day, but looks to be more serious than that.

Marty Turco
11 4-7-0 2.86

Steve Mason
11 4-5-0 3.00

Chris Mason
13 6-4-3 2.15

Brian Elliott
14 10-3-0 2.14

Jose Theodore
11 10-1-0 2.43

Jeff Deslauriers
10 2-7-1 3.50

These six are the only other Canadian goalies to have played at least ten games since Jan. 1. Honestly, who among these guys would be chosen as an injury replacement. Brian Elliott may have the best numbers over the last five weeks but that's not enough for me. Turco would probably be the most preferred among Canada's brass, I'm just not so sure his game has come around enough yet. Steve Mason is slowly breaking out of his sophmore slump, but the only way he'll get to the Olympics is on a tour bus. I'd say, if Canada did have to replace a goalie it would be Jose Theodore. His numbers are perhaps more based on his team scoring almost five goals per game over the last few months, but he may be just about all Canada has left to chose from.

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