DON’T FALL IN LOVE WITH A GOALIE

The Edmonton Oilers did not pass go, did not collect $200 and did not avoid a goalie controversy altogether. An afterthought trade for a distant bell in the BCJHL fetched the orange and blue their current starter. Is there a lesson here? Yes! Don’t get attached to the goalie. Ever

GLEN SATHER HAD IT RIGHT

  • Hockey Draft Central: (Moog) Made
    headlines as a rookie in 1981 playoffs, when he led Edmonton to a first-round
    sweep of Montreal. He also was the goalie of record for the first NHL
    postseason win in Edmonton history, beating Canadiens 6-3 on April 8, 1981, in
    Montreal. Started all nine of Edmonton’s 1981 playoff games despite having
    entered postseason as the team’s backup goaltender. Source

I remember that series and recall thinking Edmonton had their goalie problem solved for the next decade and beyond. Glen Sather? He said screw that and invested the 1981 first-round pick on another goalie, Grant Fuhr. The Spruce Grove phenom came right to the NHL, and again I thought Edmonton was set and would not look back.

  • Hockey Draft Central: (Fuhr was) demoted by Edmonton to Moncton (AHL) on Jan. 25, 1983,
    as a result of poor performance during his second NHL season in 1982-83. He
    was not recalled to Edmonton until mid-February 1983. Source

And on it went through the decade, with Billy Ranford writing a big part of the story, too. Goalies are voodoo, and for Edmonton fans this year attaching yourself to any of these guys is folly. Here’s how I see things this morning:

  • Anders Nilsson: De facto starter until further notice, he’ll need to have a terrible outing to lose the crease in my opinion. He’s a lesson to NHL teams, too. Unless Carey Price is available, chances are there’s a reasonable goalie swaying in the wind somewhere and available for a single Coughlin.
  • Cam Talbot: As long as Peter Chiarelli is GM, his bets are going to get a full chance to show their quality. I’m not complaining, that’s the way we would all handle it. Talbot was fine early, but as Jamie McLellan said on the Nielson & Fraser show the other morning, things seem to have gone sideways since that late goal allowed against the Flames. He’ll get his confidence back, and I’d still bet on Talbot playing more games than anyone this season in the Edmonton net.
  • Laurent Brossoit: He’s an actual house on fire in the nets currently, brilliant performances stacked neatly in the corner of the Condors story this season. His save percentages from the last five AHL games are .970, .974, 1.000, .952 and. 979. During November, he is 5GP, .98 and .970. Lordy.

Earlier this season, Todd McLellan said something like ‘we don’t care who plays, we just want to win’ and that goes double for the goalies. There’s a job there, and three candidates on the horizon. Who wants it? We’ll see. Don’t get attached though, this is a transaction in progress.

  • AJ88

    Really don’t get the article when it comes to goalies being voodoo. Grant Fuhr? Voodoo? Gretzky said Fuhr was the best clutch goalie ever and he played for the Oilers some 10 years. Don’t get the article LT.

  • Orm Nullman

    I wish LB would be under consideration for the North American Young Stars team in the World Cup. I’d say he’s got just as much or more talent than all the others but sadly it will likely go to the guys with the NHL experience… Gibson / Subban. I’ve never even heard of LB’s name being mentioned for the spot which is surprising considering is considered a weak point for that team and LB has been putting up unreal numbers.

  • Jay (not J)

    i never said not to trade some draft picks as i thought the talbot trade was a good bet imstill think he will be starter by middle of the season .my point was not totrade your top picks as we will have to use elc or lower cost players to replace high cost player what happens when flyers offer sheet nurse or drai say 7mill for 7 years in a couple of years ans we cant match so we lose one of them not every player can earn 6 mill a year.i like eberle but he will be traded i really like nuge but can you pay your 3rd center 6mill he will also prob get traded in time also.the future of this team is Mcd drai hall klef and nurse and i think chia goes offer sheet on seth jones as he was going to do this year with hamilton