We're heading into the 2004 playoffs, Hedberg hasn't stolen the starting position from Dan Cloutier like every Penguins fan said he would, and Dan Cloutier has just finished the 2003-2004 season with, let's say, 33 wins and a PCT of .910.
Who are the starting goaltenders in the NHL you'd rather have than Cloutier as we head into the post-season? Take salary, age, past, everything into account.
I'll start (in no particular order)...
Jose Theodore (a *bit* iffy, due to contract, but still)
I guess the two real notables on here are Sean Burke and Curtis Joseph, who bring the same problems Cloutier does, but add unwanted contracts, too. I'm not a big Khabibulin fan, either.
What're your thoughts?
Edit: Good call, incawg. Kolzig completely slipped my mind as I mentally parsed through starters in the league
DISCLAIMER: Not a Cloutier basher or apologist...all I'll say is he's got a ways to go before he can take us to the Cup, but the loss against Detroit tonight wasn't his fault.
Just a note on BES's disclaimer. That's the weird thing with Clouts... he keeps you in the game by making all sorts of good saves, and then has kind of a brain fart. The last goal, was weird because all game he was freezing the puck when there was any pressure from the Wings... but then inexplicably, in the last 90 seconds he decides it's time to play it. Looked to me like all three Canucks who were around him were caught comletely off guard. Henrik especially. He may have thought that it would be better to keep a faceoff out of the Nucks zone and then acted on that... but because it was not what he was doing consistantly during the evening, I felt it was a bad decision. I'm not sure it really has much to do with his skill, more along the lines of organizing his options. I would say the last two games we've just seen a couple of bad decisions from Cloutier. NO reason to huck the guy for the season.
Any goalie that can play the puck well, will seem very good in the Canucks system. Hedberg will likely fare better here than he has elsewhere.