2012 NHL Entry Draft
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12-21-2011, 03:57 PM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Originally Posted by
Actually, while his ability to develop goaltenders was questionable, his philosophy in drafting them is perfectly sensible. You may not agree with it - but it is sensible. A lot of great goalies (Roy, Khabibulin, Tim Thomas, Billy Smith, Hasek) were drafted in later rounds. Some (Belfour) weren't even drafted. A number of goalies drafted in the 1st round never made it to the NHL or weren't very good (Trevor Kidd, Jimmy Waite). So it can be considered kind of a crap shoot. Taylor believed in (and I agree with this) drafting 1 or 2 goalies every year in rounds 3+ and seeing who rises to the top. Being able to do a good job developing goalies is a huge part of this - and he wasn't very good there. But I agree with the draft philosophy.
It is sensible and it isn't. I agree many goalies come from the later rounds. This was actually discussed briefly on the board in the summer during one of many Bernier vs. Quick moments.
The issues I really have with Taylor's philosophy are twofold.
Firstly, while it is correct to say many goalies who can be NHL starters come from later rounds, to simply refuse to draft a goalie in the first or second round regardless of who is out there is just assinine. Of the 30 NHL starters (I used the 30 goalies who have played the majority of the games for their team this season) 14 were picked in either the 1st or 2nd round. So basically, DT eliminated almost half of his possible options off the hop. It's ok to go for it once in a while and he was willing to take on project picks elsewhere, such as Karlsson, Steckel, Boyle, Biron and Kopitar.
Secondly, even if you do only draft goalies in the lower rounds, you need a staff to identify them and develop them. DT's staff draft and developed one goalie who became an NHLer full-time for a few seasons, and that was Cristobel Huet. And Huet or became more than a backup after he left LA to go to Montreal. In total, DT drafted 12 goaltenders between 1997 and 2005 and five reached the NHL. That sounds good, but two played only one game and another played five games. The other two are Huet and Jonathan Quick, and Quick wasn't developed by DT's crew, so it's hard to allot full credit for that given it was a different group of people who actually worked with Quick and helped him with his game. As I said earlier, I don't think Quick actually ever played in a training camp with the Kings under DT (only rookie camps).
So really, DT's philosophy netted one above average netminder, ten busts and a guy who he can only take partial credit for. I don't call that a success.
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