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04-01-2011, 11:14 AM
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With their twentyfirst round pick (815) in the 2011 ATD, the Guelph Platers have selected: Felix Potvin

Potvin took the NHL by storm once he arrived.
- Greatest Hockey Legends

Career Highlights:
1992-1993 NHL All-Rookie Team (1st)
Played NHL All Star Game 1994, 1996.

Born: June 23, 1971.
Position: G
Height: 6-1
Weight: 190 lbs
Catches: Left.

Regular Season:
Led the league in GAA during the 92-93 season.
3 times top 10 in league wins (each time a 30+ game winner)
3 times top 10 in league save percentage (2,9,10)
5 times top 10 in league saves (1,2,3,5,9) and shots against (1,2,4,6,10)
5 times top 10 in league shutouts (7,7,8,9,9)

In 1996-97 Potvin set a (then) record for saves in a season with 2214.
That same 96-97 season he also allowed a league leading 224 goals on a (then) record total of 2438 shots against.
To put this in perspective, the most shots ever faced by Roy in a season is 1956 and by Brodeur 2182 despite Brodeur playing more games!

Potvin was outstanding in back to back final four appearances for the Leafs during 93 & 94.

Potvins first two seasons described by Joe Pelletier:

Potvin was brilliant as the Leafs went on a magical playoff run, only to fall short in a 7 game conference finals against Wayne Gretzky's Los Angeles Kings. Had the Leafs been successful, the Stanley Cup would have been a classic showdown - Leafs vs. Habs, Potvin vs. Roy.

Potvin followed up his rookie season with a 34 win season, tying Johnny Bower's team record for most wins in a year. He represented the Leafs in the All Star game and was even named player of the month in October. Potvin led the Leafs deep into the playoffs again, this time falling short against the Vancouver Canucks in the conference finals. Potvin was brilliant, perhaps no more so than in the opening round against Chicago. Potvin and Eddie Belfour had a classic goaltender grudge match. Potvin prevailed, including 3 nail biting 1-0 shutouts!
Potvin was also very strong in his playoffs with the LA Kings, upsetting the Red Wings his first playoff with them, and forcing the Avs to a 7th game while recording a .925 save percentage in the second.

Quotations and Perspective:

In his early years with the Leafs, Potvin was a workhorse who, in his first big-league campaign, carried his club to the semi-finals where they eventually lost to Wayne Gretzky and his Los Angeles Kings. By the time he'd completed his six-year run with the Blue and White, Potvin had more games played and wins than all other Leafs stoppers except for Turk Broda and Johnny Bower. He set a club record, leading the league in games played with 74 during the 1996-97 season. During that campaign, he faced more shots than any goaltender in league history.
- Legends of Hockey

Unfortunately as the Leafs team faded and Potvin was regularly getting peppered, he failed (or the Leafs failed to have a good coach to help him) to transition his game from relying on his amazing reflexes as he got older:

Felix was nicknamed The Cat not only because he obviously held the same name as the famous comic strip, but because he relied on his cat-like reflexes to stop pucks. Potvin tended to stay back in his net too much and struggled with his lateral mobility. Word quickly got around the league to shoot up high on him and make him move around. He would lose his angle and his cat-like reflexes weren't able to stop the onslaught. After a great start to his career, he fell from his status as one of the league's best goaltenders.
- Greatest Hockey Legends

Felix would later resurge briefly with the LA Kings for a couple of years, playing amazingly to help them reach the playoffs and upset the Red Wings in 2000-01 and then recording 31 wins and fighting a hard fought 7 game series against Dallas in 2001-02.

Potvin then helped mentor Andrew Raycroft during his Calder Trophy winning season in Boston before hanging them up (but not officially retiring!).


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