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05-09-2013, 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by SaintPatrick33 View Post
Now, I didn't ask for a plump for bean counting and affirmative action for DPE goalies. I asked which goaltenders in the HHOF are you claiming Osgood is superior to. I want specific names.

"As for actual ability, there's a thread about player evolution." That's basically BS.
It's not BS; in the 70s and early 80s there was definitely a lack of "NHL caliber" goalies when compared to the skill level of other positions. That's why we see the highlights of goals where they looked like they had no clue what to do, or were just flailing hopelessly at a weak looper. The "skater population" kept up with the number of teams and produced high level talent much better than goalies. It wasn't until the early/mid 90s that goalies caught up in depth of higher-end players and overall technique, largely driven by the addition of Euro goalies. Euro skaters were big, but guys like Hasek, Kolzig, Irbe, Khabibulin, Salo made up a huge percentage of starters given the number of total Euros at the time. And now we have Lundqvist, Rinne, Kiprusoff, Bobrovsky, Niemi, Hiller, Rask, Varlamov, Lehtonen, Markstrom, Backstrom, Nabokov, Bryzgalov, Pavelec. And that increase in goaltending quality relative to skater quality is one major reason for the DPE and lower scoring ever since. But again, there's a thread for that.

To the bolded: In a "historical" sense, or an "actual ability to stop the puck" sense? Because the second list will be larger. It's like Chicago's Al Rollins' 1953-54 season. He went 12-47 with a 3.23, had the worst record and GAA of any goaltender in the league aside from Jean Marois and Jack Gelineau; each played two games for Chicago, going 0-2 with 5.50 and 9.00, respectively. Rollins won the Hart that season and was third in goaltender voting (with Chicago defenseman Bill Gadsby third in defenseman voting), even though statistically he was by far the worst goaltender. If we don't even look at the voting, and just make judgements on stats, we can make the following judgements:

Rollins was a starter, so he was one of the top six to twelve goalies; a total of twelve goalies played that season. Statistically, he was worse than everyone but the two other Chicago goalies. As he was the Chicago starter and started 66 games to the combined 4 of the other Chicago goalies, we can assume it wasn't just a matter of stats. So he was a top-ten goalie in the NHL. He was statistically worse than every other starter, as well as second-year rookie Jacques Plante, who only played 17 games. So that places him behind six goalies. Meaning statistically, he's somewhere between #7 and #10. Four of the other goalies (Bower, Lumley, Plante, Sawchuk) are HHOFers, leaving McNeil and Henry ahead of Rollins statistically without making the Hall.

Also interesting about that season is that Johnny Bower allowed 0.63 fewer GPG, won 17 more games, had below-average offensive support, did not play behind a top-three defenseman as Rollins did, and yet did not receive a single vote for the postseason All-Star team while Rollins finished third for AS and won the Hart.

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