They weren't good enough to be signed by other teams. Damphousse's numbers actually don't look half-bad but for whatever reason he was done after 2004. Not all talent eventually makes it to the NHL, but plenty of goalies have stuck around for years and years until they got their shot. Just look at Hedberg - 94 draft pick (overage at that point too, he was eligible for the draft in 1991), doesn't make the NHL until 2001. Chris Mason was a Devils' draft pick in 1995. They didn't sign him - it took until 2003-04 for him to get his foot in the door as an NHL backup.
All I'm trying to say is that the Devils have drafted quality goaltenders, but those goalies simply haven't had an opportunity here in NJ because of Brodeur and the organization's preference to have a backup with NHL experience.
Ahonen played on a terrible Albany team and never played any NHL minutes. He never had a real chance to show other NHL organizations that he may have been NHL-worthy, but now he is showing he can play with quality stats in the KHL.
Clemmensen toiled in the AHL and it wasn't until 08-09 that he got his first true NHL opportunity, and he excelled. He put up very impressive numbers and earned another NHL deal. Unfortunately for him, no team was truly in need of a starter that offseason so he ended up on a weak Panthers team. I believe if a better team than Florida signed him, he could have solidified himself as a starting-quality goalie.
Frazee has performed well in the AHL since being drafted but hasn't ever been given a chance to play in the NHL. Maybe he will get that chance this weekend.
Wedgewood and Clermont are the first Devils goalies to be drafted since Brodeur who will actually be given an opportunity for a full-time NHL starting job one day. The other goalies had the deck stacked against them from the start. Their failure to make it to/stay in the NHL or earn a starting goaltending job had more to do with the situation of already having strong goaltending in New Jersey than it did with their talent level, in my opinion.
Edited by JWomp, 07 March 2013 - 06:51 PM.