The Thomas and Quick ones just seem like recent memory convenience...
They aren't. Thomas set the single-season save% mark (granted, with a games-played that barely qualifies him as a starter, but still), then won the Smythe with a performance that had him in a toss-up for the trophy even if the Bruins lost in six.
Quick had a Vezina-worthy season, with a sv% only a point off the actual winner (in seven more games played) and a flat out dominant playoffs. I wish I had expected win% for him given how bad LA's scoring was, but they have strong goal differential and defense, so he might not have had it as tough as "69 GP on an 8th seed with the 29th best offense" would sound.
I don't think it's recent memory so much as two very good goaltending seasons coming back to back. Whether recent history needs to be evaluated in a different statistical light, considering that Mike Smith was a few bounces from also being on this list (and joined an elite group with 65+ GP and a save% of .930 or better), might be a discussion worthy of having, however.
Yeah, I don't buy the whole "save pct. record" thing because, well, a) it's not factually correct. and b) the rate of a starter's save pct. the past couple years is up in the .915, .920 area so having a .938 or whatever vs. .920 average isn't nearly as impressive as having .925 vs. .901 average...
Quick's overall season/playoffs was more impressive to me than Thomas'...so whatever that's worth, but I find it strange that 20% of the ten best goaltending seasons in history happened in the last < 1% of recorded hockey time, that seems a tiny bit unlikely in its own right...but possibly...
But while we're having fun with numbers, I'm assuming Brian Elliott's season from 2011-12 finishes 11th on the list? He broke the save percentage record...too...or...I guess, whatever...everyone breaks the record, hooray!
I always thought Hasek's 1993-1994 season to be among his best.
Granted he put up gaudier numbers later but that was in the midst of the dead puck era. His 1.95GAA that season marked the 1st time in 20 seasons a goalie finished with a GAA under 2.00 and was impressive considering the relative high scoring that season.
Also his first round loss vs. New Jersey is likely the most impressive performance for a goaltender in a losing effort.
Hasek 1998 - Didn't win the Cup but made the semis with a team that otherwise drafts 1st overall. Won the Hart, Vezina and Olympic gold. Far and away the best goalie in the game and probably best overall player which is something you don't say about a goalie. And the saves he made that year were nothing short of highlight reel material
Parent 1974 - Vezina, Cup, Smythe and almost the Hart. Not to mention took a team that wouldn't have won the Cup without him. Beat the powerhouse Bruins and shut them out in the clinching game for good measure.
Sawchuk 1952 - 0.63 playoff GAA says it all. Plus a dominant regular season
Parent 1975 - More of the same from him. Shut out the offensive juggernaut Sabres in the clinching game too
Hasek 1999 - Wins the Vezina, is a Hart candidate and leads his team to the Cup final
Thomas 2011 - When a goalie wins the Vezina, Cup and Smythe that's telling. He wouldn't have been a bad choice for the Hart in a weak year either. He also probably still wins the Smythe win or lose.
That's just 5 but it gets sketchy after this. There are really about 20 more seasons you could put in there. And I don't think Quick should be on the top 10. There was a lot of doubt even in the Cup final whether or not he wins the Smythe (Doughty, Brodeur, Kopitar)
Grant Fuhr, 1987-88: Played in all 9 games for Canada in the Canada Cup, helping them win the tournament. Set the record for most appearances by a goalie in the regular season (75) breaking Parent's record, won the Vezina, was 1st team All-Star, and finished 2nd in Hart voting behind Lemieux. Went 16-2 in the playoffs to win the Cup. Including the Finals game in Boston Garden that was cut short Fuhr appeared in 103 games of competitive hockey (not including preseason).