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Ilya Bryzgalov a Phoenix fans scouting report

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Old
03-02-2012, 07:25 AM
  #26
phillyfanatic
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Are you sure? A $51 million goalie that can't handle cameras or pressure playing in Philly isn't a problem? I'm glad Maloney is both too poor and too smart to piss away that sort of money. We all know what he is capable of at the high end but he has to be coddled to get there.
I said he isn't our "BIGGEST" problem right now. Honestly, our team defense has been horrible. Having Pronger out for the year is a massive hole that is just unfillable (that is our BIGGEST problem). Has Bryzgalov been a problem? Yes. He has not been great, the reason I ask Coyote fans about him is, I personally see signs of him being very good for us. I want to confirm what I see is what Coyotes fans saw in Phoenix?

My scouting report: very solid goalie, above average size, covers the net well, tendency to let in soft goals, is mentally fragile, capable of stealing games, athletic enough to make highlight reel saves, when he is on - almost unbeatable, when he is off - he is terrible

On the contract. Again, noboby is going to argue that it is a good contract. I would be stupid to do so. However, the question is - if looking at the deal 1 year at a time, is Bryzgalov worth 5.5 million per?

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03-02-2012, 07:53 AM
  #27
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I agree with the general scouting reports in this thread, but I want to add that Bryzgalov's soft goals were not exclusively in the first few minutes of the game. There were certainly games where he'd let in a softie on the second or third shot of the game (which usually meant he would be off the whole game), but this happened only once in a while (excluding last year's playoff series, where it was every night). It was as rare as it was unpredictable.

The larger issue I saw with his focus was much more predictable: If he faced long periods of time without seeing much action (say, 10 full minutes when he only faces a couple shots and they're both from the perimeter), he'll get bored and won't be as sharp for the rest of the game. This was bad when it happened in the third period but worse the earlier it happened. Even if he came out blazing, making a bunch of highlight reel saves in the first few minutes of the first period, if it was followed by some sort of lull, he'd revert to the sloppy, uninterested play that marked the worst games he had in Phoenix.

On the whole, Bryzgalov is an above average goalie. He has great size and, when he's sharp, even better positioning. He's a weak puckhandler but doesn't try to do too much, and he's athletic but not necessarily quick. He can look like a Vezina candidate for three weeks and then dog **** for one.

As for the contract: Bryzgalov has had a year or two where he was probably worth $5.5 million. Maybe. But this year wasn't one of them, and I suspect most of the next eight won't be, either. I suspect that the contract was Holmgren overcompensating for what was more than a decade of very good Flyers teams being held back by a rotating cast of mediocre goaltenders. Everything post-Hextall left a lot to be desired, from the over-the-hill Vanbiesbrouck and Burke runs to the Cechmanek era to squeezing everything they could out of Esche, Nittymaaki and Biron, all the way to the three-headed nightmare that was Leighton, Boucher and Emery. Most of what the Flyers have accomplished since Hextall left was in spite of their goaltending, not because of it. The Bryz contract was a panic move.

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03-02-2012, 08:50 AM
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I agree with the general scouting reports in this thread, but I want to add that Bryzgalov's soft goals were not exclusively in the first few minutes of the game. There were certainly games where he'd let in a softie on the second or third shot of the game (which usually meant he would be off the whole game), but this happened only once in a while (excluding last year's playoff series, where it was every night). It was as rare as it was unpredictable.

The larger issue I saw with his focus was much more predictable: If he faced long periods of time without seeing much action (say, 10 full minutes when he only faces a couple shots and they're both from the perimeter), he'll get bored and won't be as sharp for the rest of the game. This was bad when it happened in the third period but worse the earlier it happened. Even if he came out blazing, making a bunch of highlight reel saves in the first few minutes of the first period, if it was followed by some sort of lull, he'd revert to the sloppy, uninterested play that marked the worst games he had in Phoenix.

On the whole, Bryzgalov is an above average goalie. He has great size and, when he's sharp, even better positioning. He's a weak puckhandler but doesn't try to do too much, and he's athletic but not necessarily quick. He can look like a Vezina candidate for three weeks and then dog **** for one.

As for the contract: Bryzgalov has had a year or two where he was probably worth $5.5 million. Maybe. But this year wasn't one of them, and I suspect most of the next eight won't be, either. I suspect that the contract was Holmgren overcompensating for what was more than a decade of very good Flyers teams being held back by a rotating cast of mediocre goaltenders. Everything post-Hextall left a lot to be desired, from the over-the-hill Vanbiesbrouck and Burke runs to the Cechmanek era to squeezing everything they could out of Esche, Nittymaaki and Biron, all the way to the three-headed nightmare that was Leighton, Boucher and Emery. Most of what the Flyers have accomplished since Hextall left was in spite of their goaltending, not because of it. The Bryz contract was a panic move.
Awesome analysis. As for your Flyers take. Story of my life. Story of my life. I dream of goalies .....I call them nightmares....

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03-02-2012, 09:13 AM
  #29
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Awesome analysis. As for your Flyers take. Story of my life. Story of my life. I dream of goalies .....I call them nightmares....
I'm from Philadelphia. I know all about it.

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03-02-2012, 11:20 AM
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IMO, he took awhile to get into the flow at the beginning of games. This lead to the Coyotes being behind at the start of games. That's not good for a team that is built around the defense and lacked quality offensive stars. He has the skills to be a Vezina -type goalie, but he is so flaky, he looses his concentration/focus easily (for a pro). He constantly needed his ego stroked and at times it didn't matter. I knew going to Philly was a bad decision.
Also Bryzgalov wore out his welcome after the playoffs no-show. Couldn't see Maloney or Tippet wanting him back. Circumstances though, with no goalie NHL or AHL, the Coyotes would have re-signed him. Glad they didn't. I didn't like the LaBarbera re-signing, but Maloney was desperate.

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03-02-2012, 06:34 PM
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Again, noboby is going to argue that it is a good contract. I would be stupid to do so. However, the question is - if looking at the deal 1 year at a time, is Bryzgalov worth 5.5 million per?
I see that contract as being very similar to the Jovanovski situation in Phoenix. Wildly inconsistent, flawed, overpaid players, yet far from useless. While Jovanovski's 6.5 M were a tough pill to swallow for most of his 6 years here, he did make the team better. I'd say the same about Bryzgalov.

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03-02-2012, 07:14 PM
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The larger issue I saw with his focus was much more predictable: If he faced long periods of time without seeing much action (say, 10 full minutes when he only faces a couple shots and they're both from the perimeter), he'll get bored and won't be as sharp for the rest of the game.
.

The big Russian does need to see quite a bit of rubber.

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03-02-2012, 07:16 PM
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I'm from Philadelphia. I know all about it.

Were you guys not alive for Bernie Parent?

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03-02-2012, 07:18 PM
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I see that contract as being very similar to the Jovanovski situation in Phoenix. Wildly inconsistent, flawed, overpaid players, yet far from useless. While Jovanovski's 6.5 M were a tough pill to swallow for most of his 6 years here, he did make the team better. I'd say the same about Bryzgalov.

Thus far, I'd say Jovo did more for us than Bryz is doing for Philly.... w/o a doubt.

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03-02-2012, 10:56 PM
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Bryz won't be in Philly next year.......could see landing in a place like Columbus. He will the one Philly player released (for salary purposes)

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03-03-2012, 12:26 AM
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Bryz won't be in Philly next year.......could see landing in a place like Columbus. He will the one Philly player released (for salary purposes)
NHL contracts are guaranteed. He could not simply be released.

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03-03-2012, 07:31 AM
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NHL contracts are guaranteed. He could not simply be released.
His contract alone stands out as a reason not to have a "amnesty clause" that allows a team to buy out a contract without cap implications as part of a new CBA.

You make your bed. You live with your decision. There should be no get out of jail free card here. It would put teams like Phoenix at a competitive disadvantage. I'd rather see Holmgrem figure his own way out of his mess than cry to the league for a solution. Sorry... I have zero sympathy if you overspend. Nobody forced Holmgrem to pay Bryz what he did. Nobody was coming remotely close to the contract Homgrem offered. I view the Bryz contract as a lock that the Flyers will not be Stanley Cup contenders for the duration of that deal. It was a career ending decision for Holmgrem IMO. It will not end well.

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03-03-2012, 08:38 AM
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No, I agree, if there is any sort of amnesty clause in the next CBA, Bryz is a likely candidate for the Flyers. I don't know the details of Prongers deal, but if he retired they may instead consider that. I can't imagine Pronger's deal is worse than Bryz though.

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03-03-2012, 08:40 AM
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No, I agree, if there is any sort of amnesty clause in the next CBA, Bryz is a likely candidate for the Flyers. I don't know the details of Prongers deal, but if he retired they may instead consider that. I can't imagine Pronger's deal is worse than Bryz though.
Long term injury reserve for Pronger.

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03-03-2012, 08:41 AM
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His contract alone stands out as a reason not to have a "amnesty clause" that allows a team to buy out a contract without cap implications as part of a new CBA.

You make your bed. You live with your decision. There should be no get out of jail free card here. It would put teams like Phoenix at a competitive disadvantage. I'd rather see Holmgrem figure his own way out of his mess than cry to the league for a solution. Sorry... I have zero sympathy if you overspend. Nobody forced Holmgrem to pay Bryz what he did. Nobody was coming remotely close to the contract Homgrem offered. I view the Bryz contract as a lock that the Flyers will not be Stanley Cup contenders for the duration of that deal. It was a career ending decision for Holmgrem IMO. It will not end well.
$27mil is still a good chunk of change,. I agree with what you typed, but hiding players in the AHL shouldn't be the alternative (there should be some sort of penalty for doing so)...

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03-03-2012, 10:01 AM
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$27mil is still a good chunk of change,. I agree with what you typed, but hiding players in the AHL shouldn't be the alternative (there should be some sort of penalty for doing so)...
There's only a handful of rich teams that could afford to do that. That's their competitive advantage. They can afford to make a mistake. The competitive advantage of budget teams like Phoenix is cap space.

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03-03-2012, 10:08 AM
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His contract alone stands out as a reason not to have a "amnesty clause" that allows a team to buy out a contract without cap implications as part of a new CBA.

You make your bed. You live with your decision. There should be no get out of jail free card here. It would put teams like Phoenix at a competitive disadvantage. I'd rather see Holmgrem figure his own way out of his mess than cry to the league for a solution. Sorry... I have zero sympathy if you overspend. Nobody forced Holmgrem to pay Bryz what he did. Nobody was coming remotely close to the contract Homgrem offered. I view the Bryz contract as a lock that the Flyers will not be Stanley Cup contenders for the duration of that deal. It was a career ending decision for Holmgrem IMO. It will not end well.
Indeed, just like how the NBA is going to be less competitive now that the big money teams will get a free pass as defined in the new CBA. Donald Fehr will do everything in his power to see this will not happen given his track record.

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03-03-2012, 10:19 AM
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No, I agree, if there is any sort of amnesty clause in the next CBA, Bryz is a likely candidate for the Flyers. I don't know the details of Prongers deal, but if he retired they may instead consider that. I can't imagine Pronger's deal is worse than Bryz though.
It'll be a while before we know of course, but I'd lay odds against there being an amnesty clause in the next CBA. I think they'd only do it if the new deal resulted in a substantial reduction of the cap. I could see a drop of a few percent but probably not larger than that.

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03-03-2012, 10:29 AM
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"Mentally he's... ah helped me tremendously, calmed my game down and obviously has ultimately brought consistency to my game".

Mike Smith on Sean Burke, during NHL Tonight interview for February player of the month.

Bryz suffers from a classic case of the "Sean Burke jones."


Edit: Tippett, GMDM and then Burke.... guys that we NEED to keep.


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03-05-2012, 07:42 AM
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There's only a handful of rich teams that could afford to do that. That's their competitive advantage. They can afford to make a mistake. The competitive advantage of budget teams like Phoenix is cap space.
Bryzgalov has a no movement clause. He cannot be traded, sent to the AHL or anything else. Unless he agrees to be traded or quits and heads to Russia, he is a Flyer for a decade.

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03-05-2012, 07:53 AM
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Bryzgalov has a no movement clause. He cannot be traded, sent to the AHL or anything else. Unless he agrees to be traded or quits and heads to Russia, he is a Flyer for a decade.
Well he's not going to quit and he won't be playing in the AHL. I don't see Snider being very happy if he has to fork over tens of millions of dollars for a goalie in Russia to not play for the Flyers. Regardless, the Flyers are one of few teams who could pull such a move off. Phoenix can't afford to make such a huge financial mistake.

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03-05-2012, 08:51 AM
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I think you can probably get Bryz to ask for a trade, I think he knows that a lot is expected from him, and if he knows as well as the fans that he is not living up to the standards, he'd want to leave. At the end of the day no human feels comfortable in an environment where they don't feel welcome. It's sad though, Bryz is a great guy and a good athlete, he's just...out there

It almost makes me hate NHL Agents. Sure, they make big money if they convince there client to cash in on an overwhelming contract, but are they really looking out for what's best for them? It just seems that players these days are all about the money, and hockey comes second. Do I blame Bryz for taking 9 million a year? **** no. Do I blame him for putting money before the game that gave him his career in the sport he loves? Yes. It's tough to see because he's such a down to earth, "heppy" guy, just got swayed into a bad decision that could lead to his demise in the NHL. See Vrbata, had his best year in Phoenix, then bolted to Tampa for the cash. Things turned out so bad there, that he went back to his hometown after a handfuls of games. Comes back to Phoenix, has the same success, and locks up with us on a friendlier deal. He came back happy to play hockey where he enjoyed it the most, in my eyes. That's what we need to see more of.

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03-05-2012, 09:44 AM
  #48
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It almost makes me hate NHL Agents. Sure, they make big money if they convince there client to cash in on an overwhelming contract, but are they really looking out for what's best for them?
You're making it sound like agents are like lawyers, and their clients do as they're told. My understanding was that it was the other way around - the player decides, the agent acts. More like a real estate transaction.

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See Vrbata, had his best year in Phoenix, then bolted to Tampa for the cash. Things turned out so bad there, that he went back to his hometown after a handfuls of games. Comes back to Phoenix, has the same success, and locks up with us on a friendlier deal. He came back happy to play hockey where he enjoyed it the most, in my eyes. That's what we need to see more of.
To be fair, Vrbata wasn't making more in Tampa than he's making here, and he went back to Europe because of family problems. 18 games is not large enough sample to have an opinion about the quality of his play that season. He was also coached by Barry effin Melrose, probably the worst coach we've seen in the NHL over the past 15 years (maybe a tie with Gretzky).

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03-05-2012, 10:20 AM
  #49
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. My understanding was that it was the other way around - the player decides, the agent acts. More like a real estate transaction.
Similar to real estate, if you have a bad agent who doesn't understand the market you can get a lot of smoke blown up your ass. Look at Lombardi. You can play hardball on a contract and punch a ticket almost out of the league. All it took was 1 panicked GM to give in to Bryz demands. I don't think he gave a lot of consideration to the consequences of accepting such a huge contract in a city like Philly. At that amount, I don't think he cared either way.

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03-05-2012, 10:33 AM
  #50
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I sincerely doubt the union will agree to some sort of amnesty in the next CBA. As for Bryz, the Flyers could pull a Huet and "lend" him to a Russian club for next and subsequent seasons.

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