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devilsrule33

The Goaltending Situation Moving Forward This Season

Brodeur vs Hedberg   74 votes

  1. 1. How should the goaltending situation be solved in the second-half of the season

    • Status Quo
      9
    • Let Hedberg have a chance to run with it. His play has earned it
      12
    • Let Marty have a chance to run with it. His career has earned it
      12
    • Go with the hot hand.
      41

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82 posts in this topic

A lot of questions are being asked about the Devils goaltending situation as we are moving to the halfway mark of the season. Arguably the greatest goalie of all-time is statistically one of the worst in the NHL this season with a 3.06 GAA and an .884 save percentage, which ranks him 35th and 43rd respectively out of 45 eligible goaltenders. He also has a 9-9 record. Johan Hedberg on the other hand has a much better 10-5-1 record with a very respectable 2.41 GAA and a .913 save percentage. This is coming off a solid season last year where he went 15-12-2 record with a 2.38 GAA and a .912 save percentage.

I know a lot of people talk about the team playing better in front of Hedberg, and that might be true, but clearly Johan Hedberg has been the more reliable goalie since joining the Devils. This leads us to a lot of questions. Is Marty Brodeur finished as a quality NHL goalie? Has he really fallen this far and this hard from two seasons ago? Is it time to give Johan Hedberg the ball as starting goalie for this team? Should the Devils continue to split time as they currently are?

What I might be saying is obviously partially bias since maybe it is hard for me to come to grips with the fact that Marty Brodeur is this bad even at this stage of his career, but I am no means a Brodeur nuthugger, and I have taken some very unpopular sides on Brodeur debates on this board and outside over the years. I just don’t think it makes sense for the Devils and PDB to continue with the status quo when it comes to the goaltending tandem.

Brodeur said something that I found interesting after last game when asked about getting into or finding a rhythm in nets. “I want to get going, play more games”….and then very quietly looked to the camera and smiled and said “hopefully that’s going to happen.” As simple as that quote was, it got me thinking. Brodeur is used to playing 70-75 games a season his entire career, playing as much as 77 two seasons ago. Maybe this split time or 60-40% thing will never work for him; it’s just something he can’t get used to. I think we can all agree that Brodeur’s current abilities can’t be as bad as the numbers are showing. Although it was a Lemaire coached team, in 2009-2010, he played 77 games and sported a 2.16 GAA with a .916 save percentage with 9 shutouts. Even last year when he came back from injury at the end of February, he started pretty much every game and was very solid. I just don’t believe his level of play has dropped off this dramatically.

Perhaps the transition from going months on end without sitting for your entire career to sharing the load isn’t as easy as we might think it can be. And I am not sure if it will ever work for Marty. For Johan on the other hand, this is what he’s used to his entire career. He’s played more than 41 games just twice in his career. That’s an entire career of working to stay focused for spot duty. Talk to any backup, and this is something that they probably work on for years.

My solution is to give Marty the ball and see what we have left. It could be ugly. It could be something I wish I never saw from a goalie that I believed, and I imagine many of you, was immortal. But what I think I know is that it couldn’t be worse than what we are seeing right now. Maybe he just needs to get back in his usual groove and find that rhythm. I just don’t believe Brodeur can be a successful 40-50 game goalie. When I say give him the ball, I don’t mean 20 straight games, but give him 15 of the next 20. Let him play some back-to-back games in the second half of the season, maybe even one 3 in 4 night stretch. We know he can handle this. He’s only been doing it forever.

All these years the greatest concern of fans were that coaches would run Marty into the ground, but I think keeping him very fresh might be worse for his game. If he’s terrible, it’ll be clear for him to see, and I bet he’d retire once the season ends. But right now he believes he has a lot left and he needs to get back into his usual routine of playing all the time. Maybe that’s what’s holding him back and not just age. What I do know is that it’s important for the team, for us, and for him to find out. I know a lot of great athletes hang on to long for many reasons, one of them being that they can’t come to terms that they are a shell of their former selves, and still believe they can be great when it is painfully obvious that they aren’t. Well, Brodeur still believes he can be great. Shouldn’t the team let him find out on his terms?

Edited by devilsrule33

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I'll grant that this is an interesting idea, but I'm just not buying it. It's not like Brodeur is simply not playing up to his normal standards. It's that Brodeur is, right now, playing like a sub-replacement goalie. With some basic math, value-wise this year, Brodeur is already a win below replacement. The Devils cannot afford to throw away a season waiting for Brodeur to get better because it's just too likely that he won't ever get better.

I know I've said this before, but Brodeur has had 1 game this year that he has started and finished where he has allowed fewer than 2 goals. That's unacceptable with the worst defense in the league - even granting that the Devils are middle of the pack, like I don't, it's far worse.

New Jersey has played 34 games so far this season. Brodeur was injured in October and returned in November. Hedberg got 6 starts in that time. So Brodeur has started 20 out of a possible 28 games, it's not like he isn't getting the bulk of the playing time. I just can't believe, given how awful Brodeur looks during any netmouth scrambles or when he's forced to get up, that lack of playing time is his problem. I know he recovered last year, but I'm not sure I would bet on that this year.

Edited by Triumph

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I have to agree with Triumph on this one. Marty's recovery time is gone. He commits an hopes now.

I am not a Marty hater. Just a realist. He's 39 and done.

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I'm going to stick to what I've been saying all year about Brodeur. He doesn't suck as bad as people are making it seem, his defense does. I know he's given up a lot more softies than usual but he's almost 40. Hasek and Roy started to 'suck' too.

Edited by ScoreMoreThan3

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I have a feeling If Marty or Moose retire next year(either/or) The other one will stay. Reason I say this is because we can't have to rookie goaltenders for a new season. I believe if we do not trade for one(bernier(la)) or sign one this off-season(Rask) or hop on Bob from Philly cause he's not staying, then Marty or Moose would choose to stay back-up and help train the young talent. Rask to get would be big with his high value, like Parise or somewhere in that upper range. Bob from Philly is pretty much a starter in my books better then Brzy for them to. And heard he wants out or a trade(heard over the off-season) Young and would be great but doubt we could get a trade from a huge rival. Sigh.

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I have to agree with Triumph on this one. Marty's recovery time is gone. He commits an hopes now.

I am not a Marty hater. Just a realist. He's 39 and done.

+1

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I have to agree with Triumph on this one. Marty's recovery time is gone. He commits an hopes now.

I am not a Marty hater. Just a realist. He's 39 and done.

I usually consider myself a realist too. And I think he's been awful this year with a few individual moments of brilliance, but certainly not more than 1 or 2 solid 60 minute efforts.

I just find it hard to believe he could slip so far in one season. I believe he can be a lot better than this, and not just because I want to believe he can be better. You just don't see goalies slip this quickly. Granted, his unique style might have something to do with it, but I'm not positive.

It can't get worse can it?

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I usually consider myself a realist too. And I think he's been awful this year with a few individual moments of brilliance, but certainly not more than 1 or 2 solid 60 minute efforts.

I just find it hard to believe he could slip so far in one season. I believe he can be a lot better than this, and not just because I want to believe he can be better. You just don't see goalies slip this quickly. Granted, his unique style might have something to do with it, but I'm not positive.

It can't get worse can it?

Goalies don't slip this quickly. It's the defense. I don't know our defensive stats and I don't care. As a fan that watches every Devil's game I know it's the defense.

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Goalies don't slip this quickly. It's the defense. I don't know our defensive stats and I don't care. As a fan that watches every Devil's game I know it's the defense.

Except Hedberg has much better numbers with the same defense. What the fans want to happen and what will are probably going to be two different things, unless Marty has a weird Osgood like revival circa 2009.

That said, Marty deserves every opportunity to get out of this. And he'll get it as long as he's healthy and the Devils are in playoff position.

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Except Hedberg has much better numbers with the same defense. What the fans want to happen and what will are probably going to be two different things, unless Marty has a weird Osgood like revival circa 2009.

That said, Marty deserves every opportunity to get out of this. And he'll get it as long as he's healthy and the Devils are in playoff position.

Marty: 9-9-0, 3.06, .884. In other words, 35th in the league in GAA and 42nd in SV%.

In comparison, Hedberg is 10-5-1 with 2.41GAA (16th) and .913 SV% (23rd).

In other words: above average goaltending = playoffs. Below average: no playoffs.

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I have to way in on this. Same defense and offense in front of Hedberg and Brodeur. Same coaches for each. But the results are not the same Hedberg is much better. Don't blame the defense for Marty's failures. Don't say Marty can't score goals same offense in front of Hedberg. IMO we can't risk a season with Marty playing more games. Alternate at the least.

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Goalies don't slip this quickly. It's the defense. I don't know our defensive stats and I don't care. As a fan that watches every Devil's game I know it's the defense.

You can't think in absolutes like this. For one, after the age of 35, all bets are off...yes, we often see the more standard, slow decline (not in Marty's case, as his numbers continued to match or exceed his career norms, until last season's first half). But we also see the almost overnight loss of skills in some cases. And Marty is a unique case, in that no goalie has ever had a workload like his coming into this season. He is boldly going where no goaltender before him has gone before, so no one can say with any certainty that he can't possibly have slipped so quickly.

dr33, me, and others have pointed out how bad the numbers are for Marty. Deep down no one wants to believe this is it for him, not like this, but I think Tri says it best, in that it really may simply never get better for him. Even his save% in his wins has not been that great...only .914. In losses it's been God-awful, at .845; for comparison's sake, Hedberg's split is .931/.891. Marty's record is excellent in shootouts (4-0), but it's kind of a miracle that he's even managed a .500 record, with his other numbers.

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Goalies don't slip this quickly.

Steve Mason is on the line, sir.

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I can't even see why this is a debate.

The Devils success will be determined by their goaltending situation. Hedberg better not get too worn out and considering his age that is a a worry.

Brodeur is finished. If the team tethers their chances to him, it doesn't stand a chance of doing anything.

If one wanted to be really honest, it would behoove the Devils to get another goalie this year, but we know the likelihood of that happening is slim due to the cost and of course not embarrassing Brodeur.

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I don't like the risk of giving Marty an extended run; it's not like we're sitting comfortably among the top teams in the conference with games to burn. He's looked pretty bad, and I hate to say it, but he really does look just about finished. Roll with the Moose; he clearly gives the team the best chance to win right now.

Edited by nmigliore

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I never thought that the post-Brodeur era that I was so scared of only 2-3 years ago would be something I'm anxious for now. I mean unless something miraculous happens, I really think Moose should take over most of the games, or at least split them 50-50. But at least there are a lot of options for next year.

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Bump because Marty has been excellent over the past 12 or so games. Liked that PDB gave Marty the ball, and he's delivered.

Very encouraging signs.

Edited by devilsrule33

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makes no sense to bump. if anything a new poll would be needed.

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are we talking about this season or next because this season we're stuck with marty for better or worse as for next season i would much rather see the devils move on for and for me that means a stop gap cheap goal tender and build for the inside

maybe use the money saved on goal tending to sign parise

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are we talking about this season or next because this season we're stuck with marty for better or worse as for next season i would much rather see the devils move on for and for me that means a stop gap cheap goal tender and build for the inside

maybe use the money saved on goal tending to sign parise

For real? Devils have plenty of cap space dude. And Brodeur is 4-1 in his last five starts with a 1.60 GAA and .939 save %. Typical NJDevs bullsh!t right here.

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It doesn't seem that long ago that there was quite the chasm between Brodeur's and Hedberg's numbers. How things have changed...Brodeur now has a 2.60 GAA and a .901 save%, and Hedberg has a 2.53 GAA and .908 save%.

Both goalies are down pretty far in the rankings: Brodeur's save% places him 38th overall, and Hedberg's save% places him 32nd. As far as GAA goes, Brodeur is 28th and Hedberg is 26th.

Of course, Brodeur's numbers over his first 26 GP were pretty brutal, so he would have to have a stretch of sustainted excellence to undo that damage. The numbers over his last 11 GP are much-improved: 7-3-1, 1.80 GAA, .925 save%. Hard to know if that will last, but a stretch like this did seem like a pipe dream when this poll was posted. All I wanted for Marty was for him to not go out looking slow and over-the-hill, and getting embarrassed as a result. To see him playing better is a most pleasant surprise.

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He looks close to Marty again. He could steal a series playing like this. Let's hope he can keep it up and DeBo rests him enough.

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:horse:

We all know Marty will be in for another year. After next, who knows.

Edited by Quinn01

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