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Hasek in his prime: Most feared goalie by players?

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12-29-2012, 03:16 PM
  #1
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Hasek in his prime: Most feared goalie by players?

Did he get into a lot of players heads? He did at the Nagano Olympics where he stoned Gretzky and then Lindros in the shootout. Going back to the Sens and Sabres intense rivalry from the 90s, he got into every Sens players heads. Is he the most feared goalie in NHL history by players?

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12-29-2012, 03:21 PM
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Mike Farkas
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The first thing that came to my mind was Roy actually. (The first thing that came to Rob Brown's mind was Ron Hextall) Not saying one is better or whatever, but when you get into a player's head in a meaningful way, it's typically in a series of some sort...like the playoffs. And Roy just had a cocky, confident way about him that sometimes you just got the feeling that he wasn't gonna let you score any more if he didn't want you to...

No more plastic rats, the wink at Sandstrom (?), he seemed pretty intimidating.

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12-29-2012, 03:24 PM
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Roy was good too, he definitely got into players heads. Roy was a brick wall when the pressure was on. No goalie in history withstood playoff pressure and made the key saves like Roy did.

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12-29-2012, 03:24 PM
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I liked what someone said in the goalies project - Hasek was better at getting in the heads of the opponents, Roy was better at instilling confidence in his teammates.

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12-29-2012, 03:32 PM
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I liked what someone said in the goalies project - Hasek was better at getting in the heads of the opponents, Roy was better at instilling confidence in his teammates.
Yeah, that sounds about right to me... in general/over the entire scope of their careers. At Hasek's most dominating best though, I don't think there was a goalie before, during, or after who instilled as much confidence in their teammates. After all, he more than earned that 'Dominator' nickname.

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12-29-2012, 04:00 PM
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I just might agree with this. Hasek got into your head even BEFORE the game. There is no way Buffalo is anything but a draft lottery team without him. That was the key before each game, how can we find a way to keep Hasek from beating us?

With all due respect for him, I never thought his 1998 Olympics against Canada was otherwordly. Canada was asleep the whole game until the third period and overtime. They were awful at generating chances that game. In the shootout we picked some poor names and with the exception of Fleury I don't think Hasek really made (had to?) a sharp save on one of them. Fleury tried to roof it and Hasek lifted his shoulder in time. Bourque took a weak low percentage shot. Nieuwendyk didn't even get it on net. Lindros had him beat but hit the post ans Shanahan came in there slow as molasses and made a weak move on his forehand. Maybe Hasek had already gotten into some of their heads who knows, but he didn't have to come up big. Thank Marc Crawford for those shootout picks too.

I think it really comes down to Roy and Hasek. Hasek was more of an enigma. He was a guy you couldn't figure out. He would be way out of position and then he would flop and make a save with his blocker without even knowing where the puck was. That frustrated you because it just like it was impossible to score.

Roy did instill confidence in his teammates, but there was also a reputation he had built of never allowing a weak goal in a big game. Honestly, to this day there are few times when you could blame Roy for a weak goal in an important game. So you knew that you had to really be on your game just to beat him.

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12-29-2012, 05:37 PM
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Dominik Hasek was so good at getting into people's heads that I think he got into his own head sometimes - with the sleeping on the cots, backing out of seasons and playoffs, and publicly deferring to Osgood. It's like he was afraid of not being the Dominator and had some quirky reactions whenever there was a chink in the armor. Normal stuff for a goalie, of course; Luongo is the same way when he's rattled.

It's all a matter of style though. There's a book on how to beat a butterfly goalie. Look at Roy: Get traffic; aim high, because if you don't make the perfect shot, it's his. I imagine a lot of players knew from the moment they released it whether it was a goal or not. With Hasek, however, there is no ideal shot, and he got some equipment on a lot of pucks that looked like sure goals, whether they be up high or down low.

Both got into people's heads though - that's for sure. With Roy, a player knew what he needed to do, but the more Roy taunted, the more frustrated the shooters became. Think of Demitra in Game 5 in 2001: the puck rebounds right to him, but he puts it right into Roy's glove - and immediately threw his stick in the air and covered his face, because he couldn't believe he didn't get it high enough. With Hasek, it was a case of people throwing everything but the kitchen sink - and getting heartbroken about sure goals that hit flailing limbs.

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12-29-2012, 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Ohashi_Jouzu View Post
At Hasek's most dominating best though, I don't think there was a goalie before, during, or after who instilled as much confidence in their teammates.
Barnaby was so instilled with confidence in 1997, he promised the media that he'd be the first to run Hasek at practice the next year.

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12-29-2012, 07:20 PM
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Bernie Parent, during his two Vezina/Cup winning seasons, would have to be in the discussion of "most feared." He frustrated other teams tremendously and gave the Flyers an awful lot of confidence. That the Flyers had the #1 defense in the league both years, taking as many penalties as they did, says a lot about their top penalty killer. Parent was definitely in shooters' heads.

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12-29-2012, 07:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Puckgenius View Post
Did he get into a lot of players heads? He did at the Nagano Olympics where he stoned Gretzky and then Lindros in the shootout. Going back to the Sens and Sabres intense rivalry from the 90s, he got into every Sens players heads. Is he the most feared goalie in NHL history by players?
Gretzky didn't shoot.

Hašek stopped Theoren Fleury, Ray Bourque, Joe Nieuwendyk, Eric Lindros and Brendan Shanahan.

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12-29-2012, 08:07 PM
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The Dominator... dominated games.



I've never seen anything like it. Players shook their heads, some even gave up after second or third attempts at shots. Players were clearly awestruck. Mario said he didn't get in his head but man did Hasek make spectacular saves against him at key moments.

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12-29-2012, 08:45 PM
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Tretiak was feared by most. Billy Smith had a run where he was feared physically by many because of the way he guarded his crease.

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12-29-2012, 08:54 PM
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
I liked what someone said in the goalies project - Hasek was better at getting in the heads of the opponents, Roy was better at instilling confidence in his teammates.
This sounds accurate and Roy inspired his teammates for quite a bit longer than Hasek scared his opponents.

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12-29-2012, 09:56 PM
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When I think of goalies instilling fear in opponents, I think of Billy Smith and Ron Hextall. Although Hasek was certainly one of the toughest goalies to beat, it seemed that he'd come unglued during the playoffs (notably when he attacked a reporter and apparently had problems with teammates and his coach).

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12-29-2012, 11:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Ziggy Stardust View Post
When I think of goalies instilling fear in opponents, I think of Billy Smith and Ron Hextall. Although Hasek was certainly one of the toughest goalies to beat, it seemed that he'd come unglued during the playoffs (notably when he attacked a reporter and apparently had problems with teammates and his coach).
You're talking about Ted Nolan, the guy who's effectively blackballed from the NHL for being impossible to work with. That entire Sabres team was dysfunctional, and went on to have its best stretch in franchise history after Hasek forced management's hand.

Also, his playoff save percentages seem to disagree with the whole coming unglued thing. And regardless of what Barnaby said, he stood up for Hasek each and every time an opposing player tried anything. Even vaunted tough guys Richard Smehlik and Darryl Shannon jumped Gino Odjick after he hit Dom, so clearly he was doing something right.

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12-29-2012, 11:14 PM
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Bernie Parent, during his two Vezina/Cup winning seasons, would have to be in the discussion of "most feared." He frustrated other teams tremendously and gave the Flyers an awful lot of confidence. That the Flyers had the #1 defense in the league both years, taking as many penalties as they did, says a lot about their top penalty killer. Parent was definitely in shooters' heads.
Thought of him too. The only thing is he lacked staying power compared to the other guys.

Moving along, while this is a name I know is nowhere near Hasek I thought I would mention him as a guy who always gave you that fear in the back of your mind that he would steal a game every time. Mike Richter. Maybe it is the 1994 playoffs or the 1996 World Cup that comes to mind, but I never felt comfortable going against him especially in international tournaments. There was always this thought in the back of your mind saying "Oh my Lord is he going to rob us tonight?"

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12-29-2012, 11:14 PM
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Originally Posted by struckbyaparkedcar View Post
You're talking about Ted Nolan, the guy who's effectively blackballed from the NHL for being impossible to work with. That entire Sabres team was dysfunctional, and went on to have its best stretch in franchise history after Hasek forced management's hand.

Also, his playoff save percentages seem to disagree with the whole coming unglued thing. And regardless of what Barnaby said, he stood up for Hasek each and every time an opposing player tried anything. Even vaunted tough guys Richard Smehlik and Darryl Shannon jumped Gino Odjick after he hit Dom, so clearly he was doing something right.
While his numbers weren't anything to be embarrassed about, you are overlooking some of the issues that plagued Hasek during the playoffs. Didn't he pull himself out and decide to sit out some playoff games from a mysterious injury that was never disclosed? And this was after Ted Nolan's departure.

He also contemplated retirement after being eliminated in 7 games by the Pens in the 2nd round of the 2001 playoffs. He was a bit of a prima donna and got all hissy when things didn't go his way. He was not as invulnerable as some have made him out to be.

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12-29-2012, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by struckbyaparkedcar View Post
And regardless of what Barnaby said, he stood up for Hasek each and every time an opposing player tried anything. Even vaunted tough guys Richard Smehlik and Darryl Shannon jumped Gino Odjick after he hit Dom, so clearly he was doing something right.
Because Barnaby is a team player. And you'll notice Smehlik and Shannon jumped Odjick - not Jim Kelley.

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12-29-2012, 11:25 PM
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Moving along, while this is a name I know is nowhere near Hasek I thought I would mention him as a guy who always gave you that fear in the back of your mind that he would steal a game every time. Mike Richter. Maybe it is the 1994 playoffs or the 1996 World Cup that comes to mind, but I never felt comfortable going against him especially in international tournaments. There was always this thought in the back of your mind saying "Oh my Lord is he going to rob us tonight?"
The 1997 playoffs too. But then I think about those playoff games of his in 1995 and 1996 that were damn hard to watch sometimes...

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12-30-2012, 12:56 PM
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I just might agree with this. Hasek got into your head even BEFORE the game. There is no way Buffalo is anything but a draft lottery team without him. That was the key before each game, how can we find a way to keep Hasek from beating us?

With all due respect for him, I never thought his 1998 Olympics against Canada was otherwordly. Canada was asleep the whole game until the third period and overtime. They were awful at generating chances that game. In the shootout we picked some poor names and with the exception of Fleury I don't think Hasek really made (had to?) a sharp save on one of them. Fleury tried to roof it and Hasek lifted his shoulder in time. Bourque took a weak low percentage shot. Nieuwendyk didn't even get it on net. Lindros had him beat but hit the post ans Shanahan came in there slow as molasses and made a weak move on his forehand. Maybe Hasek had already gotten into some of their heads who knows, but he didn't have to come up big. Thank Marc Crawford for those shootout picks too.

I think it really comes down to Roy and Hasek. Hasek was more of an enigma. He was a guy you couldn't figure out. He would be way out of position and then he would flop and make a save with his blocker without even knowing where the puck was. That frustrated you because it just like it was impossible to score.

Roy did instill confidence in his teammates, but there was also a reputation he had built of never allowing a weak goal in a big game. Honestly, to this day there are few times when you could blame Roy for a weak goal in an important game. So you knew that you had to really be on your game just to beat him.
I'm not sure the best comparison, but to me it's almost like a Koufax & Drysdale situation. Hasek was just so amazing, that it must have felt like pure futility at times to even try to score against him. Sort of like how Koufax tipped his pitches and still threw 4 no-hitters and was ultra-dominant. Your best bet was often to score via defensive errors. Like you say, he actually got into players'/teams' heads long before the game even started. Roy was more the cocky guy who would brush you back (although Koufax decked Lou Brock for walking and stealing a couple bases off him), but you at least thought that if you somehow hung in there, you could take him deep once in a while. Roy was better than Drysdale, but like both Sandy & Don, Roy was a gamer and he wasn't going to back down to anybody, even in a brawl. Just as big D could shrug off a dinger and just get meaner to keep his team in it, Roy could shrug off a bad goal and it just seemed to make him more determined.

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12-30-2012, 06:57 PM
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I'm not sure the best comparison, but to me it's almost like a Koufax & Drysdale situation. Hasek was just so amazing, that it must have felt like pure futility at times to even try to score against him. Sort of like how Koufax tipped his pitches and still threw 4 no-hitters and was ultra-dominant. Your best bet was often to score via defensive errors. Like you say, he actually got into players'/teams' heads long before the game even started. Roy was more the cocky guy who would brush you back (although Koufax decked Lou Brock for walking and stealing a couple bases off him), but you at least thought that if you somehow hung in there, you could take him deep once in a while. Roy was better than Drysdale, but like both Sandy & Don, Roy was a gamer and he wasn't going to back down to anybody, even in a brawl. Just as big D could shrug off a dinger and just get meaner to keep his team in it, Roy could shrug off a bad goal and it just seemed to make him more determined.
Fair comparison. Hasek and Koufax. Two players who could have had a longer career but had that aura about them where they were nearly infallible and everyone knew it. And let's face it, if there is a pitcher in baseball history you want to pitch just one game many (including me) choose Koufax without even blinking.

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12-30-2012, 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Puckgenius View Post
Roy was good too, he definitely got into players heads. Roy was a brick wall when the pressure was on. No goalie in history withstood playoff pressure and made the key saves like Roy did.
Roy was one of the greatest I ever saw and I've seen plenty. But for at least one season Tim Thomas in the 11 playoffs can't be overlooked in regard to pressure situations. . Winning 3 game sevens. Conn Smythe, Stanley Cup , and pushing Luongo to crazy for coco puffs.

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12-30-2012, 10:48 PM
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Roy was one of the greatest I ever saw and I've seen plenty. But for at least one season Tim Thomas in the 11 playoffs can't be overlooked in regard to pressure situations. . Winning 3 game sevens. Conn Smythe, Stanley Cup , and pushing Luongo to crazy for coco puffs.
Not for the whole playoffs, just for the Finals.
He was terrible vs the Habs and was one of the main reasons that series even went 7. His team bailed him out in that game 7 to boot.
He barely had to do anything vs the Flyers and he wasn't much better in the Tampa series than he was in the Habs series.

Finals yes, playoffs not even remotely.

Bergeron would have easily taken the Conn if he hadn't have gone down. He was clearly their best player in almost every game he played and was the main reason they even made it out of the first round.

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12-30-2012, 10:56 PM
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Not for the whole playoffs, just for the Finals.
He was terrible vs the Habs and was one of the main reasons that series even went 7. His team bailed him out in that game 7 to boot.
He barely had to do anything vs the Flyers and he wasn't much better in the Tampa series than he was in the Habs series.

Finals yes, playoffs not even remotely.

Bergeron would have easily taken the Conn if he hadn't have gone down. He was clearly their best player in almost every game he played and was the main reason they even made it out of the first round.
This sounds like a very Montreal-centric look at things. I don't remember Bergeron being mentioned as more than a Smythe afterthought going into the finals. I thought Thomas was the clear front runner, with Chara a distant second.

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12-30-2012, 11:16 PM
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This sounds like a very Montreal-centric look at things. I don't remember Bergeron being mentioned as more than a Smythe afterthought going into the finals. I thought Thomas was the clear front runner, with Chara a distant second.
I actually found an article, written by the Bleacher Report just before game 7 of the Conference Finals, suggesting that at that point Bergeron had been Boston's "most consistent player", and entirely deserving of Conn Smythe honours.

Then I found an article from the Score on May 28, 2011 talking about Bergeron leading the team in ES points after 3 rounds despite being one of two Boston forwards averaging more defensive zone starts than offensive, and refers to Bergeron as "the Bruins' best forward through three rounds".

It's just two examples though, and I'm too lazy right now to build up a more solid case, but I remember him being more than just "an afterthought", so I hit the search engine. IMO Thomas flat out stole the award with his Finals performance, and had only the Philly series to really "hang his hat on" going into the showdown with Vancouver.

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