Wednesday, February 27, 2008

THN ranks the goalies

From the March 4 issue of The Hockey News, the magazine's crew (with input from scouts) ranks the top 30 NHL goaltenders:
  1. Luongo
  2. Nabokov
  3. Brodeur
  4. Leclaire
  5. Osgood
  6. Giguere
  7. Vokoun
  8. Miller
  9. Lundqvist
  10. Turco
  11. Kiprusoff
  12. Hasek
  13. Thomas
  14. Bryzgalov
  15. Conklin
  16. DiPietro
  17. Toskala
  18. Backstrom
  19. Legace
  20. Theodore
  21. Gerber
  22. Huet
  23. Biron
  24. Ellis
  25. Garon
  26. Ward
  27. Harding
  28. Niittymaki
  29. Mason
  30. Lehtonen
Last year's list is available here.

Who's missing here? Well, I think Jason LaBarbera, despite playing on a rotten team, deserves to be among the top 20 or 25. And if Josh Harding makes the list, where's Carey Price?

Pascal Leclaire, Chris Osgood and Jose Theodore are too high on the list, even if it's entirely based on this season, while I'd have Cristobal Huet and Kari Lehtonen much higher.

The comments always get ugly on these lists...


At 1:03 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger saskhab said...

Price was listed the #1 "future watch" goalie. Not sure if the info was collected while he was in the AHL last month.

At 1:10 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger Jeremy G. said...

Hmm... I'd imagine this ranking is based on "right now" and doesn't factor in career credentials. That's the only way to explain Ty Conklin appearing so high, and right above Rick DiPietro, no less.

Conk's put in a great half season of work so far, but he's hardly the first unheralded netminder to go on a ridiculous tear. Ricky D, meanwhile, has been consistently improving over the course of his career, which culminated in his first all-star selection this season.

Let me put it this way: who's more likely to start for the USA Olympic team in 2010?

At 1:40 p.m., February 27, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let me put it this way: who's more likely to start for the USA Olympic team in 2010?

Ryan Miller.

At 1:50 p.m., February 27, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any list that doesn't have Brodeur and Giguere 1-2 is bogus - Luongo has always been rated too high by THN, even though he's only won one playoff series... This entire list should be formulated as a draft - which goalie would you pick to carry you through to the Stanley Cup finals? Brodeur and Giguere would be the top two picked - in whichever order. And I'm not a fan of either the Devils or Ducks....

At 1:51 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger DMFB said...

If rankings are really only based on this season, Garon is kind of low there, too. His shootout prowess and play since he took over the starting job are the only reasons the Oilers aren't even worse.

At 1:53 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger Bruce said...

Boy I still like Marty Brodeur as the top dog of the goalie pile. His team sits atop the Eastern Conference despite having scored the 12th most GF in the east. He has once again assumed the league lead in wins, having led the NHL in this all-important category 8 of the previous 9 seasons. (!!)

Not sure when this poll was taken -- it probably doesn't include Brodeur's latest run of 11 consecutive games allowing 2 or fewer GA in regulation -- but this guy's consistency is legendary, and I've seen nothing suggesting he's relinquished his grip.

Given he plays in the higher-scoring east (about 0.1 goals per team-game higher) Brodeur's stats are less gaudy than they might be, but they're still pretty darned impressive. Comparing him to the guy ranked above him, Evgeny Nabokov, Brodeur has more wins, fewer losses, a better GAA, has allowed fewer goals despite facing over 150 more shots resulting in a much better save percentage (.920 to .910). And did I mention his team is in first place?

At 3:06 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger P.O. said...

so Marc Andre Fleury wins 40+ games last year and has a high ankle sprain and is suddenly not in the top 30? makes no sense

At 3:09 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger The Falconer said...

Lehtonen at 30 is a joke. He's in the to half of SV% this season and last despite playing behind a swiss cheese defense. Yet another of bias in the Hockey News, he would not be ranked 30 if he played in certain other cities.

At 3:58 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger Gretz98 said...

"Who's missing here? Well, I think Jason LaBarbera, despite playing on a rotten team, deserves to be among the top 20 or 25."

Exactly what I was thinking before I read your commentary on the list.

And Wow! Kipper at 11 behind Osgood and Pascal Leclaire? Is this list solely based on this season's performance?

At 4:33 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger Jim Dwyer said...

Tim Thomas is #13? No respect for the fellow who has led the league most of the season in GAA.

At 4:52 p.m., February 27, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

ummm. I'M SORRY. im going to say this in the nicest way possible. Luongo is good. Yes. But.... despite his efforst and "good goal playing" with florida, he can't just come in and play one amazing season and be the best. BRODEUR is the alltime best goalie there is and ever will be. Being a huge hockey fan youd think you knew that!

At 5:12 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger Old said...

Unfortunately, all these guys are Conk Blocked.

My Rating:
1. Brodeur
2. Nabakov
3. Luongo
4. DePietro
5. Conklin

At 5:53 p.m., February 27, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hockey fans don't give enough thought or weight to team defense when evaluating goalies. You always hear about playoff experience and total wins in these goalie-ranking discussions. However, the quality of the defense and the team's defensive system are much more important.

At 7:21 p.m., February 27, 2008, Blogger Bruce said...

However, the quality of the defense and the team's defensive system are much more important.

As is the goalie's contribution to that defensive system. Brodeur has had success behind a defence of Stevens, Niedermayer, Daneyko and Raflaski, and is still having success behind the current defence containing none of the above. He's the one constant, the de facto defensive captain of the always-solid Devils. His puckhandling, rebound control and general awareness of the flow of play are top notch, much superior to those of a pure stopper like Luongo.

At 10:05 p.m., February 27, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of course LeClaire does not deserve to be ranked that high, he plays for Columbus. Typical Canadian media comment. If he played in Canada he would be rated too low wouldn't he?

At 12:44 a.m., February 28, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obviously this list is based entirely on this year's performance... On that note, how can't you rank Leclaire as the top netminder so far? 3rd in GAA, 2nd in SV, 1st in SO, and on Columbus no less. Osgood and Hasek have no business being in the top 20. Detroit is the only place where you could take two deteriorated, 90s netminders like Osgood and Hasek and have them play at that level. Conklin deserves to be higher, given that he single-handedly resurrected the Penguins (far before Malkin has been given credit for it). Jiggy is about right, he certainly benefits from playing for the Ducks. Bryzgalov should be higher, as should Thomas.

Lehtonen and Mason? Uh, no.

At 1:16 a.m., February 28, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is wrong with you all bitching about what people have done in the past. This is clearly a list of what people are doing this season. Kolzig is a good example, he was pretty good last year and this year he's sucked so he's not on the list. That simple. What have you done for me lately.

At 3:12 a.m., February 28, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

so what. you want to base it on this years?! same fucking difference. Brodeur has made 2 or MORE of his best saves that hes made in his entire career in this year alone. Like buddy said a few comments up. Devils had a very strong defense lineup a while back, this year?theyre all young and inexperienced. DESPITE THIS and maybe even because of it....Brodeur has played one of his best seasons... not including the start.... this year. They lost how many games at the beginning of the season and have now come back to first in the eastern conference. annnd if i recalll, last time he had a slow seaons he came back to win the stanley cup. Luongos got his head so far up his ass over his family issues that hes not even in the game n e more.... i think we all know who deserves the number one pos. i mean colorado? luongo might have just confirmed them a spot in the playoffs this season. round of applause?

At 1:05 p.m., February 28, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

who thought that it was a good idea to put lundqvist up so high on the list. hes been terrible this whole season. i dont see how he can be that high.

At 3:24 p.m., February 28, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When making a list of player rankings you should always consider would you swap any player straight up for the other? Using this limtus test you can see that the list is screwed up royally.

At 5:11 p.m., March 04, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brodeur is having a really good season this year... but he's still one of the most overrated players of all time:


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