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Stop Paying Goalies


(Icon Sportswire / Getty)

Stop paying goalies or suffer the consequences later. At what point will NHL teams learn this valuable lesson? (Icon Sportswire / Getty)

Stop Paying Goalies

Maybe the crazy guy is right? At what point do we acknowledge that the crazy guy is the only one who actually understands this sport? Goalies are the bullpen pitchers of baseball and running backs of the NFL. Stop paying them or suffer the consequences later. As time goes on my “crazy” theory only continues to become more and more of a reality. Stop paying goalies. Stop doing it.

Cal Petersen blows. I couldn’t tell you why anyone would commit a $5 million AAV to him. Didn’t make sense at the time. Looks REAL bad now. In case you missed it, Petersen got put on waivers and went unclaimed with 2.5 years remaining on a contract he literally just signed. Through ten games this year, Petersen has a .865 save percentage

The funniest part is Petersen was supposed to serve as a tone setter for goalies on the free agent market. The dumb teams like Edmonton obliged and gave Jack Campbell a stupid contact. In fact, Campbell has already admitted that he stinks right now. Campbell through 13 games has a dreadful .872 SV%.

In fact, Stuart Skinner is basically the starter now who makes an entry level contract. He’s outperforming Campbell in every category.

Of course, we saw this next example coming from a mile away too. Wonder if the Seattle Kraken regret that Philipp Grubauer contract at all? Grubauer has an .888 SV% through 61 games with Seattle. Turns out playing well in Colorado isn’t that hard? Who could have saw that coming? Yes, I’m grinning as I write this.

I was told that Darcy Kuemper was really good and that Vitek Vanecek was terrible. That’s what Washington though anyway as they blew money on Kuemper while having no issue watching the much young option walk out the door. Vanecek has a better SV%, GAA, and Quality start%, literally any stat you want to use except for minutes played over Kuemper. I’m sure it has nothing to do with being surrounded by John Marino and Jonas Siegenthaler.

Oh, and have you seen Alexandar Georgiev’s numbers? Avalanche are paying him nothing while he’s providing a SV% of 9.22. That mark is currently better than the guy he backed up in New York, Igor Shesterkin. I wonder why that is? Maybe Joe Sakic is smart and just gets it like I do.

Two things play a factor in how goalies play; age and blue line support. That’s it. As predicted, Logan Thompson has made Robin Lehner feel expendable. Thompson just won rookie of the month for November and has been crushing it all year.

That half second of being young and spry makes all the difference in the world. When that running back in the NFL loses that half step, they become worthless. It’s why we’re starting to learn that paying anyone after their rookie contract is 9 times out of 10 becomes a very dumb proposition.

Guess what? Vegas is getting A+ goaltending while paying Thompson a cap hit of $760,000 over the next three years. When it becomes time to pay Thompson, the Knights should trade him for a kings ransom. We’ll see if Kelly McCrimmon is smart enough to call me when that time comes.

Even the really good established goalies are struggling. I tried to tell you that Jacob Markstrom was going to be due for a bad year. You didn’t listen. Did you hear what Markstrom said last night? Through 17 games, Markstrom has a .889 SV% and is being outplayed by backup Dan Vladar who makes next to nothing.

It’s not Markstrom’s fault. Blame the Flames for not recognizing it was time to cut bait and sell high.

What you people don’t understand is that goalies don’t rule the sport anymore. Young guns that score goals like Jason Robertson rule the sport. It’s why I’m going to once again put Sean Allen in my back pocket again this Summer. Wait until that video comes out… Imagine ranking Robertson as the 76th best player in fantasy hockey? Couldn’t be me.

Okay, I’ll stop. That rant will come later. Back to goalies.

By the way, last month I told you who was about to thrive. I hope you picked up Pyotr Kochetkov in your league like I did. Kochetkov, 23, through eight games has a SV% of .916 and is starting to take control of the net in Carolina. The old guys who Carolina is overpaying for (Antti Raanta & Freddie Andersen) are both hurt… again.

Think the Blues regret paying Jordan Binnington? Turns out maybe keeping Alex Pietrangelo was more important. But again, who could have saw that coming? Yes, I’m grinning again.

I haven’t even gotten to John Gibson, Sergei Bobrovsky, or Petr Mrazek yet. I don’t need to. If you don’t get it by now, I can’t help you.

I don’t know what more evidence you need but if you don’t get it by now, you’re a lost cause. Stop paying goalies or suffer the consequences later. It’s going to keep happening at a more drastic rate as the league becomes faster and more skilled. What you people don’t get is that these guys are too skilled now. They put pucks in exact spots. Connor McDavid didn’t exist ten years ago. Just wait until there are more of him in the league.

This is your warning. Get it now or be left behind later. I believe in analytics but in this instance, they mean nothing. We’ll see who gets it and who doesn’t as this trend continues to become a reality now and in the future.


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