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12-12-2012, 05:09 PM
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Smith vs Fuhr

Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
If the only thing Smith has over Fuhr are his save percentage stats, then it is relevant that the stats are so team dependent. Like I said in response to MadArcand when he made this point, you need to give Fuhr SOME credit for being something of a workhorse, but I'm not sure how much. The reason Smith vs his partner is so interesting is because he was in a tandem situation, so it really was the case that neither Smith nor his partner appeared to be more important during the regular seaosn.

I'm open for arguments to rank Smith over Fuhr - as I said, they are probably the two hardest goalies to rank yet, at least among NHLers.
The better question is why Billy Smith had a better SV% than Grant Fuhr.Previously Mike Farkas described some of the problems of the Oilers transition game in contrast to the simple efficiency of the Islanders transition game.

Fuhr was the more athletic eye catching goalie while Billy Smith was by far the more technically sound goalie.

Smith quarterbacked the defensive zone, excellent communication skills and puck movement. He was excellent at re-directing shots to the corners, clearing rebounds with his stick(avoids faceoffs), eliminating passing and shooting lanes. These attributes made the work of the Islanders more efficient in their own zone.

While Smith was part of a regular season tandem, he was the go to goalie in the playoffs during most of his career since his game was ideal for playoff hockey.

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