Marty hasn't been Marty for the past 4 years now. Since the 2007-08 season Marty's GAA in the playoffs is near a 3, with an .898 SV%, and he's won 5 games. He missed 50 games with a shoulder injury in 2008-09.. 30 games last season.. and is now rehabbing again for 2 weeks. (maybe longer) He's playing out the last year of his contract, and turns 40 in May..
People need to remember we're all Devil fans on this board, and it's completely normal to question the direction of the organization post Brodeur. Rarely will someone knock Marty just for the sake of knocking Marty. But seriously.. isn't it obvious to everyone that he's not nearly the same goalie he was? Did everyone really believe Brodeur would defy father time, and play like he's 27 when he's 40?
Without a doubt.
They already went to that co-starting goalie system last season. (which many compared to "hell freezing over") How the team plays these next 2 weeks will be pivotal to Brodeurs status. If the team rallies around Hedberg, Moose will remain the starter. Management will not make the same mistake they made 3 years ago. In the end, chemistry is priority #1.
Management made a mistake with that one? Really?
Though Clemmensen played as well as anyone could have asked under the circumstances, he was showing signs of coming back to Earth before Marty returned...in his last nine GP before Marty came back, he gave up three or more goals in six of those games, and failed to save 90% of the shots in five out of the nine games. From 1/4 to 2/21, his save% was only .907...not God-awful, but his season save% was .917, so he was clearly not playing as well as he had earlier that season. In his last three starts, he had given up 13 goals, with an .867 save%...his last two starts were both 4-0 losses. I appreciated what Clemmensen did as much as anyone that season, but it did appear that whatever magic he had was wearing off.
The team did seem to be in need of a spark at that point, and Marty was terrific when he first came back...the team won 9 out of his first 10 starts, and he allowed only 19 goals during that stretch (6 of which came in his lone loss over those 10 games). Would the Devils have done the same with Clemmensen at net, with the way Clemmensen was playing at that point? Would Clemmensen been able to match Marty's production? Probably not.
In fairness, the Devils did not finish the season strongly, and Marty did not play as well as he did when he first came back, but neither did the team, and I don't think the poor play was a result of Marty disrupting chemistry. Even if they had gone back to Clemmensen after Marty went through an 0-5-1 streak (where the team scored just 7 goals), based on how Clemmensen was playing before Marty came back, would he have made much of a difference?
As for him "not being nearly the same goalie"...based on what? You didn't see his second half? I'll give you that he may not be as DURABLE as he once was (this was his single greatest asset), but I haven't seen a great drop-off in ability when he CAN play. He's been up-and-down in recent playoffs, but look throughout his career and you'll see he's always been up and down in the playoffs from season-to-season...the Devils did get to within one win of a Cup in 2001, but Marty was not really terribly good in those playoffs. And the teams in front of him have had a way of looking like the slower, more easily dominated team in most of the playoff series they've been in since 2004. So though he hasn't been consistently great since 2004 in the playoffs, neither have the teams in front of him.
Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976, 21 October 2011 - 06:52 AM.