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12-08-2012, 09:03 AM
Big Phil
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Originally Posted by Kyle McMahon View Post
Oh it would have been a shock to most people, I agree. But most people only watched the final, or only bits and pieces of the first three rounds. I watched 24 out of 25 Bruins games in their entirety or close to it that spring. So I saw Thomas allowing the first shot of the game to go in multiple times, weak goals that turned momentum in games, and Tampa Bay nearly upsetting Boston due in large part to Thomas stinking the joint out in the three losses to them.

So in my eyes, Thomas was merely at the same level of importance as a Chara or Krejci when the whole playoff run is examined. The nature of being a goaltender is that you're going to have the single biggest effect on whether your team won or lost the game most of the time. If Thomas is going to get credit for the great performances, of which there were several, he should also face scrutiny for the bad ones, of which there were also several.
He may have allowed the odd soft goal, but when push came to shove Thomas was brilliant. Even in the Montreal series, which wasn't his best, he made a critical save in overtime in Game 5 on a two-on-one that probably should have gone in. His acrobatic style was all over the place that spring. Even with Tampa he calms down and registered a Game 7 shutout. In the final he more or less cemented his Conn Smythe, I mean the guy didn't have a bad game in all 7 of them. In a way, he played much like Fuhr did in the 1987 Canada Cup. Fuhr let in a few shaky goals (even Thomas in Game 2 of the final in overtime let in a poor one) but when the chips were down you didn't want anyone else in net. Thomas was kind of like that in 2011 with the Bruins, I think.

Originally Posted by Czech Your Math View Post
I don't know Phil, that seems awfully close to me... especially since you didn't give Kipper credit for his 7th place finish lat season. So each has 4 top five and 7 top ten finishes in Vezina, with Kipper actually winning one. Kipper did so in fewer seasons played and probably missed higher quality season(s) than Luongo. How does this favor Luongo?

Sure, Luongo's younger, but it's not even certain when/where he will be playing next as a starter. Kipper had some years in Finland before the NHL, better AHL stats, and the likely quality of his missed seasons was greater IMO. He and Iginla were the reason Calgary came out of nowhere to play in game 7 of the SCF. Meanwhile, Luongo is viewed as a reason why the Canucks were a strong contender in multiple seasons, yet imploded in their SCF game 7 (the only time they were even remotely close to the Cup during that strong regular season run). Luongo has a .540 Win % while playing half of his career with a perpetual division winner, while Kipper has a .607 Win % for the hapless Flames.

You've taken the hard line against players who missed a full season (and going on two) due to circumstances outside their control, based on the principle that it's what a player has done, not what they could have or would have done (even if supported by their actual performance in years before/after and in foreign leagues/tourneys). Yet you are splitting hairs between what appear to be two very similar careers of once-elite goalies now in their mid 30s, based on what you think they will do, because one is 2.5 years younger? I think you're pretty far out on that limb, Phil, when you declare that Luongo is a borderline candidate that might deserve the benefit of the doubt, while Kipper is a definite "no."
I am going on the assumption as well that Kipper doesn't have a lot left in the tank while Luongo I believe does. I am a critic of Luongo personally because I always felt that while he did win those big games for Canada (2004, 2010) he also let the other teams back in the game with weak goals. But, to be fair to the guy he still did win them. I think his high peak in 2007, his international career and his age give me reason to think he'll be in the HHOF when all is said and done (again, just a projection) while I just can't see Kipper doing much from here on in to cement his status. The HHOF is tough on goalies and by their standards is he a HHOFer today? I don't think he is because other than that 2004 Cup run he has never exited the first round. That's definitely a strike against him and I don't see Calgary changing this in the near future. Not to mention missing the playoffs since 2009.

Luongo has been out of the first round 4 times, going to the final in 2011 and has more hockey left in him I believe. That being said, you are right, their Vezina finishes are pretty similar.

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