Why I Could Care Less About (Goalie) Wins and Losses

Jonathan Willis
July 25 2009 10:41AM

I’m sure everyone here is sick of me preaching doom and gloom about the Oilers’ coming season. I’m equally sure that they’re sick of my rather pessimistic predictions about the Khabibulin contract. This article isn’t meant to continue those trends, but rather to make a general point that is inspired by one particular line of reasoning about Khabibulin: that he’s a winner.

It’s always seemed to me that a goaltender’s win-loss record is well beyond his control; it just makes sense. A logical extension of this is winning the Stanley Cup; since the goalie alone can’t determine wins and losses, it seems that winning and losing is a bad way of judging goaltender ability.

An extreme example of this occurred during the 2005-06 season. An NHL team had two goaltenders; goaltenders who had posted the following stats lines:

  • Starter: 24-9-7, 2.29 GAA, .919 SV%
  • Backup: 6-17-1, 3.00 GAA, .910 SV%

The backup obviously had poorer numbers, but that was still an exceptional save percentage. With this team out of a playoff spot, they elected to swap the backup to a competitor for draft picks; the fact that the backup was a pending free agent undoubtedly helped them to make that decision.

In any case, there were some serious doubts about the backup. Not only was his win/loss record shoddy, but despite being 36 years old he had but a single playoff round win to his name – and even there, his performance hadn’t been great (posting a .903 SV%).

The backup was Dwayne Roloson, of course, and here (in part) is what Tyler Dellow of mc79hockey.com had to say about the trade on the day it took place:

Now, from the Oilers perspective, they’re getting a guy who has just put up solid numbers for the last three years. I’ve included Roloson’s numbers in a table to the left. His relative save percentage has been outstanding for the past three seasons after a very mediocre start to his career-1019, 1024 and 1015. The last time I did the Oilers as a team, they were at 980-even if Roloson falls to league average, he’d be a significant improvement over what they were getting. Some of the dumber commentary I’ve seen on this (like the Wild’s press release, and every second comment on Calgarypuck), makes a big deal about Roloson’s record compared to Fernandez. His significantly higher goals against average has also been mentioned. I wouldn’t read too much into it. Roloson has, for some reason, had the Wild play significantly worse in front of him. On my numbers, the expected even strength goals against per 60 (based on shot volume, distance and whether or not it was a rebound) for the Wild when Roloson was in net was 3.07; when Fernandez was in net, it was 2.63. That’s a pretty significant difference. The Roloson figure of 3.07 (which is designed to reflect the team in front of him as opposed to the goalie) is a worse figure than that put up by every team except Atlanta, the Islanders and the Penguins this sesaon. I’m not so sure that he’s had the Wild’s usual stellar play in front of him in games he’s played this season. I don’t generally pay attention to wins as a goalie stat but I’d assume that the Wild have given better offensive support to Fernandez. Much has been made of Roloson playing for the Wild and the idea that he’s just putting up numbers playing behind a stifling defence. I’m not sure what to make of this myself-while it’s true that he put up worse than league average numbers prior to the last three years, he was consistently excellent in the minors and spent much of his NHL time playing for teams that weren’t particularly good defensively. As I noted, there are indications that they haven’t played particularly well in front of him this season and he’s still put up good numbers. Comparing him to the trio we’ve been using all year, I have him as being 3 goals below his expected goals against at even strength this year, again, with expected goals against being determined by shot volume, rebounds and distance. He’s faced 536 ES shots as of my last update. That’s a hell of a lot better than the guys that the Oilers have been using-as of my last update, Jussi was -15 on 633 shots, Ty was -5 on 198 shots and Morrison was -3 on 248 shots. This indicates to me that Roloson has been significantly better this season than the guys he’ll be replacing. My conclusion is that if he puts up the save percentage he has so far this season for the remaining 20 games and we assume he plays 80% of the games, I figure he makes the Oilers 12 goals better. That’s a ridiculously huge number, worth in the neighborhood of 4 points in the standings.

That’s a long quote, but it’s worth reading. It’s also illuminating because Tyler (even more so than me) has been accused of having a consistently pessimistic view of the Oilers. That isn’t true; he’s consistently judged goaltenders by the available market and by their save percentage over the past few seasons in relation to the rest of the league.

The same things that made Roloson appealing in 2005-06 are what he’s using to judge goaltenders now. As we saw, save percentage worked well then and I think it will continue to work well in the future. Honestly, a goaltender’s win/loss record – even a goaltender’s playoff record – holds very little weight with me if he’s been sub-par save percentage-wise.

Chris Osgood is, in many ways, the perfect example of this. People who watch the numbers agree with people who watch the games: he’s a fairly average tender playing for a great team. However, he’s won enough Stanley Cups that there’s now almost a ‘Cult of Osgood’; he was considered a leading candidate for the Conn Smythe trophy in the event of a Wings victory, and people talk about how he turns it on for the playoffs.

I just don’t buy it. He’s played well (not great, but well) behind a phenomenal team, but he isn’t one of the better goaltenders in the NHL.

In any case, the point here isn’t to bash Khabibulin (who had a remarkably good save percentage last season) but just to point out that winning and losing is beyond a goaltender’s control – and it’s wrong to judge him (for good or ill) based on the number of wins or losses he’s picked up along the way.

Final point: the NHL record for most losses is currently a record held by two goaltenders. Curtis Joseph is one of them, and the other is one Gump Worsley. Worsley owns the rather pedestrian career record of 335-352-150, along with a couple of other things (four Stanley Cup rings, two Vezina trophies). I realize I’m being as subtle as a sledgehammer here, but looking at the win/loss record alone tells you virtually nothing about a goaltender.

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#1 Why I Could Care Less About (Goalie) Wins and Losses - Himanchals Org.
July 25 2009, 10:59AM
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[...] here is sick of me preaching doom and gloom about the Oilers’ coming season. Read more: Why I Could Care Less About (Goalie) Wins and Losses :a-general-point, article, article-isn, general-point, his-control, one-particular, rather, [...]

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#2 ScubaSteve
July 25 2009, 11:09AM
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I know I've been on your @ss for this topic lately, but your telling me you'd rather have Roman Chechmanek or Manny Fernandez for a higher sv% than Eddie Belfour, bc/ W/L don't matter?

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#3 Fiveandagame
July 25 2009, 11:10AM
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I think there is way more to the story the GAA and Save % when it comes to goalies.

Finding consistent goaltending is very hard. Only a few select individuals have the mental side to the game that allows them to compete mentally game in and game out and one season after another. (Jim Carrey anyone?)

How would we have felt if the Oilers handed the reigns over to an unproven starter like Anderson (one season doesn't make him a proven starter).

The fact that everyone took a pass on Biron on July 1 speaks HUGE volumes as to what he was looking for and also to why the Flyers we're so willing to walk away and go with former problem child Emery.

Another consideration when signing a UFA has to be player character and their dressing room presence and what their reputation does to the players in front of them. I believe teams play better when they are confident in their goaltender and reputations have a lot to do with that.

Also when talking about JDD, he has to be good enough and athletic enough for the Oilers to endure the three headed monster and be willing to give him the back up duties this year. I think everyone can agree that his development has been unfairly compromised by this team time and time again and I for one am looking forward to him getting a chance to prove himself.

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#4 GSC
July 25 2009, 11:10AM
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You're going to extraordinary lengths to make yourself appear correct, and it's unnecessary.

Some, like myself, simply aren't going to agree with you in arguments like this. Putting up article after article in defence of yourself isn't going to sway those who disagree with you, me included.

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#5 Tyler
July 25 2009, 11:17AM
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GSC wrote:

You’re going to extraordinary lengths to make yourself appear correct, and it’s unnecessary. Some, like myself, simply aren’t going to agree with you in arguments like this. Putting up article after article in defence of yourself isn’t going to sway those who disagree with you, me included.

Yeah Willis. You might as well just ditch all of these "historic examples" and "evidence". Your argument is lacking in truthiness.

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#6 Death Metal Nightmare
July 25 2009, 11:26AM
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a lot of the time, neither does the save percentage unless youre figuring out the "value" of each shot. shots from the perimeter are easier to save than shots in the wheel house. that one writer/researcher (forget his name off hand) tried to figure out that system of shot quality to see who the actual "Good goaltenders" are. but even that doesnt isnt the clincher. theres astronomical calculations that can help lead to success or failure. thats why hockey is great, because its chaotic. thats why most people consider just getting into the playoffs "the chance" they need to dance with order and chaos. the numbers dont mean crap. a bounce of the boards can change a series. or a dumb play by Ty Conklin can put the Oilers behind the 8-ball in a series. or have the Super Human Red Wings who have so many fabulous CORSI stats and other crapola lose in a series up 3 games to 1.

stats in hockey are decent for helping create a possible model of "whats to come" / possible capacity but they tell nothing of the actual context of whats to come. GOOD.

Osgood, individually, proved he ups his game and focus when the reward has more meaning. thats all you need. if it wasnt for Brad Stuart in game 7, Osgood would have probably won the Conn Smythe. maybe you should write up a report on Brad Stuart blowing the cup for them with bad passes and pinches and figure out some stats around it. "dumb plays = loss. yum."

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#7 GSC
July 25 2009, 11:28AM
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Tyler wrote:

Yeah Willis. You might as well just ditch all of these “historic examples” and “evidence”. Your argument is lacking in truthiness.

And, of course, it's another stats crony to the rescue.

You go by statistical formulas that most of us don't need to consult, we know enough by what our eyes tell us.

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#8 SkinnyD
July 25 2009, 11:46AM
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Jon's pointing out that numbers are subjective in their interpretation - that's all. 'What our eyes tell us' is even more subjective...and at times inaccurate.

I like the signing of Khabi, personally. Very safe if you think about it - he's a proven commodity, will play less so we can finally develop JDD and Dubnyk - and can always be moved at the deadline to a contender if necessary. Win-win in my mind.

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#9 Jonathan Willis
July 25 2009, 11:54AM
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Hey, hey, hey - this isn't about Khabibulin here. Seriously; that just got me thinking about this topic, but I've pretty much said my piece on the Russian.

All I'm saying is that wins and losses, which are brought up so often when evaluating goaltenders, are basically useless.

Save percentage isn't good enough, by itself, but it's infinitely more useful than W/L.

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#10 Tyler
July 25 2009, 11:58AM
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GSC wrote:

Tyler wrote: Yeah Willis. You might as well just ditch all of these “historic examples” and “evidence”. Your argument is lacking in truthiness. And, of course, it’s another stats crony to the rescue. You go by statistical formulas that most of us don’t need to consult, we know enough by what our eyes tell us.

I'm Willis' Northern BC crony. The stats thing is a coincidence.

How many Hawks games have you watched in the past four years? I'm talking about games you've actually watched at least two periods of, not seen some highlights or watched for ten minutes while flipping channels.

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#11 Calamus
July 25 2009, 12:06PM
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If you "could" care less, then why don't you?

Care less about it.

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#12 GSC
July 25 2009, 12:13PM
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Tyler wrote:

Tyler wrote: I’m Willis’ Northern BC crony. The stats thing is a coincidence. How many Hawks games have you watched in the past four years? I’m talking about games you’ve actually watched at least two periods of, not seen some highlights or watched for ten minutes while flipping channels.

I'm not talking about Khabibulin individually, I'm talking about the argument Willis has against goaltenders in particular.

I liken it to professional football where passing statistics for quarterbacks are seemingly paramount over a win-loss record. As a goaltender, you're front and centre on a hockey club, just as a QB is in football. I would argue that the position has more to do with winning and losing a game than any other position, just because of how often that player is involved with the game at critical junctures.

Maybe the stats back up what I'm arguing, maybe they don't, but it's the way I view the game. I'm sure you're just as tired of the non-empirical arguments as I am of the over-analyzed statistical arguments, but neither of us are going anywhere and that's ultimately my point. When it comes to debating with an audience that generally doesn't completely understand and/or completely accept the statistics-weighed approach, seemingly redundant posts have a way of appearing to come across as over-thought with stats that are doctored to fit any argument.

I do believe that one can make numbers say just about anything...politicians make it happen each and every day, don't ya know!

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#13 Tyler
July 25 2009, 12:16PM
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I missed the part where you explained how many times you've seen the Hawks play in the past four years. I'm sure if you're bagging on Willis for relying on the stats and explaining that some of you don't need to, you must have seen a lot of Hawks games. What are we talking here?

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#14 West Coast Oil
July 25 2009, 12:19PM
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I never had a chance to respond to JW's responses to me on the last blog. My entire point previously was that many of the posts here have become doom and gloom. My job means I deal with stats all the time and the one thing I know regarding stats is that you can always find a stat to support your argument because in most cases they are subjective. You cannot say your argument is correct or that your choice would be better based solely on statistics.This is like saying you can be a doctor because you know this medicine cures this ailment half the time. There are many factors that go into decisions beyond just the stats. We do not know the nuances of people and situations. I guess I prefer the good old emotional response on occasion with a stat thrown in.

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#15 GSC
July 25 2009, 12:22PM
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Tyler wrote:

I missed the part where you explained how many times you’ve seen the Hawks play in the past four years. I’m sure if you’re bagging on Willis for relying on the stats and explaining that some of you don’t need to, you must have seen a lot of Hawks games. What are we talking here?

And my mistake for not getting to that part of your question. I've seen Khabi in net for the Hawks maybe...10 times in the regular season over the last couple seasons, and more so in the playoffs (esp. this past season vs. CGY and VAN).

I see Khabi as an upgrade over Roloson in terms of the difficulty/quality of shots faced and saved (which I noticed without having to consult the numbers, but the numbers did agree with me as JW argued a few weeks ago). Sure, I could be wrong and the stats could further cement that fact, but I'm willing to take that chance and take the plung if I'm incorrect.

There has to be a better way of meshing these statistical arguments and the observation (LT's "seen him good") arguments...maybe it's already being done and I'm not paying close enough attention? I know that many of the stats you gents use are very useful and effective, but some others leave me scratching my head and wondering just how necessary they are.

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#16 Tyler
July 25 2009, 12:25PM
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West Coast Oil wrote:

My job means I deal with stats all the time and the one thing I know regarding stats is that you can always find a stat to support your argument because in most cases they are subjective.

This isn't actually true. You can find a stat that will support your argument most of the time if you don't mind making fallacious arguments. Used properly, stats are pretty useful. All they are are records of the number of times something objective occurred.

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#17 GSC
July 25 2009, 12:26PM
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West Coast Oil wrote:

I never had a chance to respond to JW’s responses to me on the last blog. My entire point previously was that many of the posts here have become doom and gloom. My job means I deal with stats all the time and the one thing I know regarding stats is that you can always find a stat to support your argument because in most cases they are subjective. You cannot say your argument is correct or that your choice would be better based solely on statistics.This is like saying you can be a doctor because you know this medicine cures this ailment half the time. There are many factors that go into decisions beyond just the stats. We do not know the nuances of people and situations. I guess I prefer the good old emotional response on occasion with a stat thrown in.

That's exactly the way I see it, westcoast. Thanks for putting it into the words that I haven't been able to.

@ Tyler & Jonathan Willis:

This is what I'm talking about, and I'm sure you guys will roll your eyes at another emotional argument rather than an empirical one, but it's also the reality of the situation with most of the fans out there.

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#18 DaGongshow
July 25 2009, 12:27PM
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I can't stand stat geeks. Guys that never played the game figure they can become "gurus" just by analyzing stats for hours. Bottom line is: Just win baby! The Bulin wall was a great signing and a HUGE upgrade!

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#19 Robin Brownlee
July 25 2009, 12:31PM
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Tyler wrote:

I’m Willis’ Northern BC crony. The stats thing is a coincidence.

Coincidence or not, the pattern is clear.Tyler wrote:

I missed the part where you explained how many times you’ve seen the Hawks play in the past four years.

I missed the part where you 'fessed up about being shoulder to shoulder with JW in your belief in advanced stats so that we can at least start with an honest baseline about where you're coming from.

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#20 Robin Brownlee
July 25 2009, 12:38PM
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DaGongshow wrote:

I can’t stand stat geeks. Guys that never played the game figure they can become “gurus” just by analyzing stats for hours. Bottom line is: Just win baby! The Bulin wall was a great signing and a HUGE upgrade!

C'mon Show, that's the same approach I hate when stats guys try to make "seen him good" types sound like ignorant buffoons for putting more weight in what they see than what the numbers tell them. You don't have all the information you need unless you blend gut feel with some statistical context. There's room for both.

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#21 West Coast Oil
July 25 2009, 12:39PM
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@Tyler

Sorry on my BBerry so I cant use the quote or reply feature. Stats are subjective based on who collects them. An example would be you and another person are counting people who enter a store someone comes up opens the door steps half way in changes his mind and backs out. Now is he counted as entering the store or not? Different people would have different opinions.

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#22 oilers123
July 25 2009, 12:44PM
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Who cares about the stats of save percentage? Bulin beat the shames to win the cup and most recently beat out both the Canucks and flames in the playoffs out tending Luongo and kipper-soft. Good enough for me

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#23 West Coast Oil
July 25 2009, 12:48PM
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@ GSC

I just prefer when people say I hate this signing because! No explanation needed or like I said a couple of stats to back your point up. Guys like Brownlee in other words. I love JWs views on things it just seemed to me as of late he was throwing every stat out there to prove the Oilers braintrust are idiots and it seemed like over kill

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#24 Archaeologuy
July 25 2009, 01:18PM
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People who are tired of Evidence being used in an argument will find a way to discredit anything and everything they can. They dont like this stat so they just call it subjective, without saying what it is that's subjective. It's the same way conspiracy theorists claim that the fossil record is fake or Obama doesnt have a valid Birth certificate, its ridiculous. If the stats dont support the argument then a reason can be provided, but the numbers dont have to be wrong.

Maybe Horc has a week where his FO% plummets. The problem might be that he has a broken hand, not that the guy counting the faceoffs is subjectively giving the other guy more wins.

Like Brownlee said, there is room for numbers and gut. The same numbers can be contextualised in a thousand different ways, it's up to the reader to find the context that makes the most sense.

For the record I like Stats, but numbers alone dont tell the whole story. The problem is that most of us arent pro-scouts or have access to provide full context, but the stats are readily available.

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#25 oilers123
July 25 2009, 01:22PM
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JW has every stat he can think off to make the Oilers brass and team look shitty. He's a canucks fan thsts why. At the beginning of last season everyone picked Edmonton to finish first in the NW. What has changed from last year ? Oh yeah better coachs , better tender , healthy team and O'sullivan instead of Cole. We are better then last year. If Heatly never requested

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#26 West Coast Oil
July 25 2009, 01:40PM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

For the record I like Stats, but numbers alone dont tell the whole story. The problem is that most of us arent pro-scouts or have access to provide full context, but the stats are readily available

Bang on! We will never have full access to the nuances involved in each deal. Stats are great when trying to figure out how a young player may develop or perhaps debate certain points. To use them in a situation to say that deal was wrong or an epic fail when not knowing all the facts bothers me..

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#27 oilersinsider
July 25 2009, 01:49PM
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Stats are often helpful when I feel as though I need more than just an opinion on what I see. In fact I often use some statistical information to help me form my opinion.

That said, I have noticed a tremendous amount of statistical articles which seem to be directed solely at making the Khabibulin signing look worse and worse by the day. Especially after Biron was signed to a rediculously low contract as a 3rd string goalie.

My question to Willis is are you actually trying to tell you don't like Khabibulin? Or are you trying to allow us the opportunity to form our own opinions? If so, it would be nice to see a statistics related argument that Bulin makes sense for the Oilers. (if you wrote one, I apologize for not having had the chance to read it).

Also nice to know JW, if you felt this way prior to the Biron signing or has it just kind of irked you that Biron was signed at such a low contract?

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#28 West Coast Oil
July 25 2009, 02:39PM
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@ OilersInsider

I just read your blog for the first time some great articles you have up. I found the article from the Islanders beat reporter regarding Biron especially informative and really sheds light on the siging and confirmed for me what I believed.

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#29 oilersinsider
July 25 2009, 02:42PM
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@ West Coast Oil:

Appreciate the kind words. We're relatively new to the whole idea of a blog, but I'm truly enjoying both the research and the writing that comes with it.

Always open to some feedback and ideas for future articles.

The guys here at Oilersnation have been helpful too, so a special thanks.

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#30 OilerFanInCalgary
July 25 2009, 02:46PM
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I think the signing of the Bulin wall has 2 purposes...He will be a good goalie for the next few seasons, which is great but I think he is also here to be an example for JDD and DD. He apparantly is a great guy and a great teacher for the goalie kids. I bet that's the bigger reason he's here, he'll help mold the youngers goalies.

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#31 ScubaSteve
July 25 2009, 03:09PM
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West Coast Oil wrote:

Archaeologuy wrote: For the record I like Stats, but numbers alone dont tell the whole story. The problem is that most of us arent pro-scouts or have access to provide full context, but the stats are readily available Bang on! We will never have full access to the nuances involved in each deal. Stats are great when trying to figure out how a young player may develop or perhaps debate certain points. To use them in a situation to say that deal was wrong or an epic fail when not knowing all the facts bothers me..

Bang on, I think you 2 hit it on the head.

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#32 kurt
July 25 2009, 03:11PM
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i am not really paying any attention to what anyone is saying or thinking about the oilers at this moment! the only thing i can say that we are about due for a cinderella team again. who knows will smarten everyone up to perform to where we all hope they would be... the bulin wall stay healthy and plays like every year is his contract year.... penner finds that passion to play without finding the donut that fell behind the couch.. gags neilson and cogs game steps up to where they are the next big thing.... hemmer still hemmer who shots consistently.... and our 'd' is playing up to the big contracts there all getting. or maybe i am just a typical oiler fan that hopes for this every year... year after year...after year........ nevermind this is our year!!!!

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#33 ScubaSteve
July 25 2009, 03:18PM
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Off topic, but what does everyone thinks about the Derek Morris contract? Makes Grebs look like a bargain!

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#34 Chris
July 25 2009, 03:23PM
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When it comes to hockey: I believe what I see. When someone generates a stats based argument that conflicts with what I believe to be true: I'll take another look. If, upon closer examination, I remain confident with my belief, I'm forced to assume the numbers are either incorrect, or poorly contextualized. I know I'm not perfect. I know I can be prone to bias... but I'm not going to go through life being told by others-with-numbers what to believe.

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#35 vern
July 25 2009, 03:27PM
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Rolie played well last year. That being said im not sure he would have signed here even i offered aa two year deal. He moved his family back to Ontario at the start of last season. NY is much closer to his family. I, for one, would have liked to sign biron. I just doubt he would have signed here that cheap if at all. I'm ok with the bulin signing. If it doesent work out there is an abundance of goalies to be had.

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#36 Hemmertime
July 25 2009, 04:00PM
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I call bullsh*t. Having a winner matters. Going down the home stretch trying to make the playoffs in big game after big game.

Or in the playoffs, overtime - Khabibulin or Josh Harding? Who do you want in your net? The team has confidence in your goalie, he has been there, done that, and came out on top. The mental aspect can be a big factor to not only the goaltender knowing what it takes to prepare himself, but the team in front of him too.

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#37 gdawg
July 25 2009, 04:06PM
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@ kurt: I think the heat is getting to you Kurt. This is no cinderella team. What the Oilers are is a soft bunch of mediocre players. There are some career AHL players with the Oilers that have no right being in the NHL. Then there are draft picks that somehow get labelled as the best thing since sliced bread.(Rob Shremp) It is fun to wish for a cinderella team but wouldn't you rather see a team with some depth and grit that wont just fluke it into and in the playoffs.

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#38 oilersinsider
July 25 2009, 04:53PM
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ScubaSteve wrote:

Off topic, but what does everyone thinks about the Derek Morris contract? Makes Grebs look like a bargain!

There will be people on both sides. What I find interesting is the fact that the moves made to clear space to bring Morris in were to make room for Kessel, which it seems is inaccurate.

I'm interested more in where Kessel winds up now.

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#39 West Coast Oil
July 25 2009, 04:59PM
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@ ScubaSteve

I think this is the year Grebs shows he is ready for top pairing duty and if so he will make the dollars next year. If that is the case I can see us moving Souray or Lubo. The Morris signing shows teams will still spend but only short term. Makes you wonder though because a lot of the experts were saying how good he was last year and he would be a great trade deadline acquisition yet the Rangers just let him go and it took awhile for him to be picked up.

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#40 ScubaSteve
July 25 2009, 04:59PM
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oilersinsider wrote:

I’m interested more in where Kessel winds up now.

Yeah, seems strange that Boston seemingly (looking at the cap) has no desire to re-sign him. Although one could make the argument that Savard, Krejci, and Bergeron are ahead if him on the depth chart at C. They are loaded at C, maybe they move him for a pure winger?

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#41 Hemmertime
July 25 2009, 05:09PM
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List of Stanley Cup Goalies by year, Salary and Save Percent

Year Name Cap Hit SP Cup Year SP since Lockout Age Turning That year. 2009 - M.A. Fleury 5.000 0.912 SP 0.908 25 y/o 2008 - Chris Osgood 1.417 0.914 SP 0.900 36 y/o 2007 - JS Giguere 6.000 0.918 SP 0.913 30 y/o 2006 - Cam Ward 2.667 0.882 SP 0.903 22 y/o 2004 - N.Khabibulin 3.750 0.910 SP 0.903 31 y/o 2003 - M.Brodeur 5.200 0.914 SP 0.917 31 y/o 2002 - D.Hasek Ret 0.920 SP 0.914 37 /yo 2001 - P.Roy Ret 0.913 SP N/A 36 y/o 2000 - M.Brodeur Ret 0.910 ------- 28 y/o

With the exception of Ward I dont see any really young goalies. I took a look at the numbers and was running them in a hope to show that Khabibulin is good pickup. And compared to other names on the list I would rather have him at his salary than Gigueres or Fleury's even if he does let in 5 pucks more per 1000 shots. So thats 1 goal extra per 8 games or 10 goals - 11 per season. I think the math was a team needs to score 4 or 6 more goals over the course of a year for wins. So that is about 2 less wins per year with Khabibulin than Fluery, but 1.25 mil more in cap space with which to make the missing goals up.

I am happy with this signing. Ward didnt even play his season, just had good playoffs. They really ran with Gerber all year. You do not see many young goaltenders names on the cup because it takes a winner to win it. All these goalies had many years of good save percentages being posted prior to their cup years - and that is why I wouldnt want a Harding or any other young goalie back stopping us this year. Biron would possibly have fit the bill, but Ill take the proven winner over someone who seems to lose their starting spot perennially to other mediocre goalies. Everyone of these goalies could be trusted by their teammates and most were/are leaders in their dressing rooms.

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#42 Hemmertime
July 25 2009, 05:09PM
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Garbled my pretty table

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#43 MattL
July 25 2009, 06:40PM
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@ Hemmertime:

Aside from Osgood and Giggy, all those goalies are comfortably top ten, and usually top five in the league. They're all guys who have either been consistently great for their careers, or will likely be (Ward). Even Osgood had a stretch of 5-10 years of being a good-verygood starter.

I'd say Khabibulin fits in this table a lot more than a Biron would, and not just because he's already ON the table.

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#44 forsoothed
July 25 2009, 08:42PM
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Sometimes I feel like I'm the only one who watched the Oilers last season... Roloson played well and was the best Oiler on the ice at times, but was good for one terrible goal a game (I can't be the only one who noticed).

Based on that alone isn't Bulin an obvious upgrade?

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#45 Hemmertime
July 25 2009, 09:26PM
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Im just shocked Willis could consider Biron a possible top 5 in the league goalie. 5-20. A broad range but still 5 of those spots have him in top 10 in league. Baffling

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#46 Victoria
July 25 2009, 11:03PM
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forsoothed wrote:

Sometimes I feel like I’m the only one who watched the Oilers last season… Roloson played well and was the best Oiler on the ice at times, but was good for one terrible goal a game (I can’t be the only one who noticed). Based on that alone isn’t Bulin an obvious upgrade?

False. Though he did let in a few bad goals here and there, another goalie I've seen a lot this year did the same... Khabibulin,

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#47 ScubaSteve
July 25 2009, 11:34PM
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forsoothed wrote:

Roloson played well and was the best Oiler on the ice at times, but was good for one terrible goal a game

While that might be an over-statement, it's not far from the truth, and don't think that doesn't play on the minds of the players.

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#48 Jonathan Willis
July 26 2009, 02:11AM
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oilersinsider wrote:

My question to Willis is are you actually trying to tell you don’t like Khabibulin?

I actually do like Khabibulin. If I were looking at free agent goalies (contracts excluded) this summer, I would have ranked them Biron, Khabibulin, Roloson.

Or are you trying to allow us the opportunity to form our own opinions? If so, it would be nice to see a statistics related argument that Bulin makes sense for the Oilers.

I could only do that by arguing things I don't believe. Khabibulin's numbers this past season were really nice, but he lost a step after he signed that big contract in Chicago and didn't come around until Tallon brought in Huet (coincidence, or does he need pushing?). If this were 2005-06, I'd be pumped about the signing, but looking at his performance in Chicago I'm just underwhelmed - especially since he's been essentially anointed the starter for the next four years.

Also nice to know JW, if you felt this way prior to the Biron signing or has it just kind of irked you that Biron was signed at such a low contract?

I disliked the contract as soon as I heard the term. I wasn't crazy about the money, but over two years I could get behind it; four years is extravagance.

The Biron signing was just the icing on the cake that proved what I (and Tyler before me) had been saying all along: there simply wasn't much of a market for goalies this summer, and a little more bargaining could have put the Oilers in a much more favorable position.

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#49 Jonathan Willis
July 26 2009, 02:14AM
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Fun Ken Holland quote:

My feeling is if you can get one of the five or six best goalies in the league you can spend the money. We can’t get into those guys, and the difference between the eighth goalie in the league and the 15th goalie, it’s a big difference in money. It’s not a big difference in performance.

IMO, that's right on the button.

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#50 Jonathan Willis
July 26 2009, 02:24AM
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Hemmertime wrote:

Or in the playoffs, overtime - Khabibulin or Josh Harding?

In 2006-07: Ray Emery, or Martin Brodeur? In 2005-06: Cam Ward, or Martin Brodeur? In 2003-04: Miikka Kiprusoff, or Evgeni Nabokov? In 2001-02: Kevin Weekes/Arturs Irbe or Martin Brodeur? In 2000-01: Roman Turek or Ed Belfour?

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