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01-31-2013, 12:32 PM
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When does Vokoun become the Pen's starter?

I've speculated this for a while and I feel the Pens are on the precipice of making this decision (at least they should be after the NYI game). I have theorized that the Pen's skaters have given up on MAF (or shoddy goaltending in general), not Byslma after last year's melt down. I think that still holds true, but wish I had more data (more games with Vokoun in net) to prove it.

Vokoun is a known commodity of a near top10/above average goaltender. This is something that the Pens have not had as a data point to compare MAF's performances against in the past. His career SV% is well above MAF's, despite playing for poorer quality teams on average. He does this through consistent play instead of elite "highs". He generally plays well enough not to loose the game through his play, giving his team a "chance" to win.

The above shows the Pen's GA and GF for each goaltender so far this year. Notice not just the difference goals allowed but also the goal support each goaltender receives. It is close to a 3:1 (for against) ratio that switches based on who you are looking at. Still too few games to make a definitive conclusion, but there may be something building here. The indicator is the stark (2g / difference) in goals for possibly showing the Pens reluctance to play in front of MAF.. Neither goaltender has direct influence on this, but this is driving my theory of the team quitting on MAF.

To me, giving TV the starting position is a much less damaging solution to try first before changing D systems, head coaches, trades, etc on a team that has shown to be successful in the past. This Pens team has always been successful when it has received solid, > .900SV in net.. If the Pens find a way to get that on a consistent basis, I bet the Pen's start winning more games.

The discussion is whether the team plays poorly in front of a great goaltending performance (problem with defense), or if the team quits after they see a poor goaltending performance (problem with goaltending).

I am just reluctant to be in WSH's position in a couple of years after the Pen's "blow things up the wrong way", or don't properly identify their problems. I think Bylsma has his flaws, but he is not skating in the games for sure.

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