Thread: AAA 2012 Draft
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11-16-2012, 04:33 PM
seventieslord's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Regina, SK
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Big News! Regina has finally settled on a goalie!

Dreakmur and I were finally able to come to an agreement that one goalie stands out among those available. And that goalie is Cesare Maniago.

Here’s what we liked about him:

- He had good staying power in the NHL, with more career GP than most available goalies despite coming of age during the O6 era (with the benefit of a 12-16 team league in his 20s, he would likely have a few hundred more to his credit)
- He was a workhorse goalie, finishing top-10 in minutes 5 times (2nd, 4th, 6th, 7th, 9th), and this doesn’t count his 8th and 10th pre-expansion – for obvious reasons those would be misleading to include.
- He was often among the sv% leaders (5th, 5th, 7th, 8th, 9th)
- Despite playing well into his declining years he maintained a weighted sv% averaging 1.3 points better than the league average in his career
- His 36 playoff games are a pretty decent sample for an AAA goalie
- He actually topped the playoff sv% average by a weighted 5.8 points over his career.
- While he was a “tweener” thanks to an O6 NHL numbers game, he was a pretty successful minor league goalie, going 146-121-13 between 1960 and 1966. Being that he was up-and-down, he often didn’t play enough games to get award consideration, but when he did, the EPHL called him the best goalie in 1962, and the CPHL called him the best goalie and MVP in 1965. He also won the 1960 Allan Cup.

From a previous post:


Maniago had good size (6'3", 190), especially for the 1970s, and toiled for years on the mediocre Minnesota North stars. He finished his career with a 190-257 record and 15-21 in the playoffs. His GAA was certainly nothing special, but he did manage, over the course of his career, to post a sv% (.901) slightly above the league average over that time. He placed 5th, 5th, 7th, 8th, 9th among NHL goalies in sv% in his best years, indicative of a good goalie getting pelted with a lot of rubber.

Some of Maniago's best seasons came when he was paired with Gump Worsley in the Minnesota nets. As a good point of reference, this 41-44-year old HHOFer posted a .918 sv% for Minnesota in these seasons while taking on a light workload (29.4% of the minutes). Maniago posted a .910 sv% while playing 53% of the minutes. Who was outperforming whom? Tough to say.

Maniago retired after playing 46 games in the 1977-78 season. At the time, only the ageless Eddie Johnston (42) was older among goalies in the NHL or WHA.

Originally Posted by Hockey's Best Books
As one of only five NHL goalies who played 150 games in the 1960s and 250 games in the 1970s, Maniago was an unsung hero who personifies all the greatness and change of pro hockey during his time... renowned as a superb ‘team’ player who was both a throwback and a pioneer, a workhorse and a stalwart.
Originally Posted by Fischler's Hockey Encyclopedia
When he flops to the ice to block a shot, he looks like a whooping crane in extemis, and when he removes his mask he carries the long-faced look od a man who has just lost his dog or his best friend. It could only be Cesare Maniago, veteran cager of the Minnesota North Stars.

...after expansion, proved he was something more than a sub goalie...
Originally Posted by Goaltenders: the expansion Years
The 1969-70 season would prove to be particularly difficult as the mounting defensive problems and the lack of support from a proven backup led to him seriously contemplating retirement...
Originally Posted by Complete Handbook Of Pro Hockey 1972
Workhorse goalie who was Minnesota's first expansion draft choice...
Originally Posted by Complete Handbook Of Pro Hockey 1974
Agile for a big man and uses legs well to block shots but looks somewhat unorthodox...
Originally Posted by Complete Handbook Of Pro Hockey 1975
"Hail Cesare" has become a familiar cheer around the Met center...
Originally Posted by Complete Handbook Of Pro Hockey 1976
Has aged well... after abandoning thoughts of retiring, carried bulk of North Stars goaltending... reflexes are still sharp...
Originally Posted by Complete Handbook Of Pro Hockey 1978
Ability is often overlooked because he has played with more losers than winners...
Fun with stats:

Minnesota Goalie sv%, 1968-1976:

Worsley (107 GP) .919
Maniago (420 GP) .906
All others (239 GP) .881

If you don't count Worsley as a usual replacement-level backup, then Maniago was 27% better than his backups over his Minnesota tenure. In ATD2010, I showed that Parent outperformed his backups by 21%, exceeded only by Hasek among elite goalies (29%). If you lump Worsley in with the rest, Maniago outperformed them as a group by 14% - still Dryden/Esposito-level dominance.

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