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11-07-2012, 10:45 PM
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I really don't understand why you guys are even talking about the addition of the Red Line. This is what happened in 1943-44:

In 1943, the rules committee was looking for ways to increase the speed of the game and make it more entertaining. Rangers coach Frank Boucher proposed that the neutral zone be divided by a centre red line, and that teams be allowed to pass the puck out of the defensive zone into their half of the neutral zone.[60] Previously, the league required that defensive players skate the puck out of their defensive zone, not permitting a pass across the blue line.[61] Introduced in 1943–44, the new rule changed how the game was played. Where strong forechecking teams were previously able to pin their opponents in their own zone for minutes at a time, teams were able to create rushes up the ice by having defencemen pass to forwards across the blue line.[60] Scoring increased 10% league-wide, and four of six teams topped 200 goals, the first teams to do so.[61]

How exactly is this relevant to goaltenders? Defensemen had their role changed - breakout passes became more important and skating less important. Also, they had to learn to defend against the puck moving forward between zones. But goalies? How did their role change? I saw the claim that goalies started handling the puck more after the Red Line was put in place. But I'm pretty sure that's not true. Jacques Plante gets massive credit as an innovator for being the first goalie to go out of his way to play the puck, when everyone else stayed in their crease. And Plante came on the scene more than a decade after the Red Line was introduced.

For the 1943-44 rule change to be relevant here, two things must be true:

1) The rule change must have changed the way goalies have played
2) Changes in goaltending technique actually matter when we are ranking goalies.

So far, no evidence has been provided as to why the Red Line matters when talking about goalies. Sure, GAAs went up - for everyone! If you're ranking these guys against their peers, the Red Line is irrelevant.

And that's not even getting into the fact that as late as 1947-48, Brimsek and Durnan were basically considered co-best goalies in the league. So even if evidence was provided that the Red Line changed the way goalies played, it's pretty clear that the goalies we are discussing here adjusted just fine.

Last edited by TheDevilMadeMe: 11-07-2012 at 10:55 PM.
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