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01-04-2009, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
1) Statistical Argument
First 2004. For Brodeur: 38-25 = difference of 13 wins. 2.42-2.03 = difference of 0.39 GAA, 11-7 = difference of 4 shutouts. For Luongo: 931-.917 = difference of .014 save %

Now 2008. For Brodeur: .920-.910 = difference of .010 save %. For Nabokov: 46-44 = difference of 2 wins. 2.17-2.14 = difference of 0.03 GAA. 6-4 = difference of 2 shutouts

In 2004, Brodeur blew Luongo out of the water in every category but save %. In 2008, Brodeur and Nabokov had incredibly similar stats, with a slight edge to Nabokov. Except save %, which was a much larger discrepancy.

2) Realistic Argument 1
Luongo missed the playoffs in 2004. Huge strike against him. The Vezina generally goes to the MVP of goalies, and how much worse could the Panthers be?

3) Realistic Argument 2
Like I said earlier in the thread, when two players have a great case for the Vezina, it goes to the superstar veteran. This is also true of the Norris trophy.

To be fair, I do honestly think that 2004 should be Brodeur's only controversial Vezina. He was slightly, but clearly better than Luongo in 2007 and Nabokov in 2008. In 2003, Turco was slightly better in the games he played, but Brodeur played so many more games, he helped his team more than Turco did. The old "Turco sure wasn't helping his team win (the job of any NHL player) in the games he didn't play" argument. And not surprisingly, Turco's stats went down in subsequent years as he played more games (not singling out Turco; this happens to most goalies).

I do think Brodeur was a good choice in 2004, since their was already a precedent for goalies failing to make the playoffs having an uphill climb to win the Vezina. But I can see where others might say, "What the hell else was Luongo supposed to do playing behind that horrible team?"
Although I disagree with your opinion on Brodeur's first two Vezinas, this is probably the best post in the thread so far, since it establishes the bases for the opinions on both sides of the arguments.

I won't bother commenting on the Nabokov comparison because I agree that Brodeur was the best in 2008, as he also was in 2007.

For 2004, Brodeur did clearly beat Luongo in every category other than sv% (which Luongo destroyed Brodeur in); however, it was all but impossible for Luongo to beat him in any other statistical category. The Panthers allowed 10 shots more per game than the Devils. How could one expect Luongo to equal Brodeur in either GAA or shutouts? In addition, the Panthers scored 25 fewer goals than the Devils in 2003-2004. Should Luongo have been anywhere close to Brodeur in wins that season? Also consider that the Panthers recieved 115 more minor penalties that season. Given that shot quality on powerplays tends to be higher than at even strength, Luongo's save percentage is all the more impressive.

Luongo did take a big hit for missing the playoffs in 2003-2004, but he really should not have. If the Vezina was awarded to the goalie adjudged to be most valuable to his team, this would make sense. However, given the description of "best goaltender", a playoff berth should not be a deciding factor in award voting.

Indeed, close calls tend to go to superstar veterans, but I don't see the race in 2003 as a particularly close one. The difference in save percentage between the two goalies that year was .018, which is massive. The fact the Dallas also recieved 84 more minor penalties than New Jersey indicates that the quality of shots against Turco may have also been a bit higher. Yes, Brodeur's extra 18 or so games makes a difference, but enough to to make up .018 in save percentage and better per game numbers in every category?

If the Vezina was an MVP trophy, I would have no problem with a Brodeur victory in either 2003 or 2004, but he should not have recieved an award for "best goaltender" in either of those seasons.

On another note, I hope that those saying they think he deserved these awards based on "what I saw", I hope you watched each goaliem play a significant number of games (ie. 20+), so you are not basing your opinion on on a few games during a hot or cold streak for any of the goalies.

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