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Greiss needs to get more starts

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12-12-2009, 08:21 PM
  #1
Blades of Glory
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Greiss needs to get more starts

McLellan needs to start giving Nabokov more days off. Nabokov is an elite goaltender, but since his workload increased substantially after the Toskala trade, his playoff play generally has slipped below his usual lofty standards. In both of the past two seasons, I think it's very clear that by the time the playoffs roll around, Nabokov is simply over-worked and fatigued. He battled through inconsistency in 2008, especially against Calgary, and still ended up keeping us from getting swept by Dallas in the second round. Last year, he was brutal but it's tough to find him at fault when the entire team was even worse.

Nabokov is very, very competitive, and if it was up to him, he'd start all 82 games. There's no question that he is one of the top five goalies in the league, and the Sharks would be lost without him. However, the fact of the matter is no goalie in this league but Martin Brodeur is capable of playing over 70 games and avoiding the natural fall-off that comes in April and beyond. It's no surprise that Nabokov was consistently dominant in the 2004 playoffs after starting only 59 games. His most consistently elite playoffs were in years that he started less than 60 games during the regular season; 2004 and 2007. Like I said, I'll give him a pass for last season, when he started a respectable 62 games, because the entire team fell apart in front of him against Anaheim. He was very good in 2002, but he was a little inconsistent against Colorado; 67 games, and it's hard to judge him in 2001 because he battled through injuries in the series against St. Louis.

But here we are again, in what undoubtedly is on pace to be another 68-70 start season, and are faced with an even worse problem: the Olympics. Nabokov is the sure-fire starter for Russia in the Olympics. At a time when most of the league's top goaltenders will be resting, Nabokov and Brodeur will have to deal with the fact that they will be expected to play 70 games in the regular season, lead their teams to Olympic Gold, then backstop an elite NHL team deep into the playoffs. History says that goalies that combine that level of regular season work and lead their team into a medal game in the Olympics struggle and and go home earlier than expected in the playoffs. Brodeur in 2002 (first round) and Lundqvist in 2006 (first round) are obvious examples.

Goaltending is not a problem with this team. Greiss has played very well in his limited ice time this season, and the Sharks' aren't going to lose games because of him. We need to start thinking about the long-term success of this team, i.e. the playoffs. Yes, our defense is probably the worst Sharks' defense of the Nabokov era. But we are still going to make the playoffs as a very high seed and we need Nabokov at his best come April more than any other player on the roster. He has proven that he can carry us through several rounds even if our top players are inconsistent (2004), especially in a conference that is far weaker than it has been for most of the past 15years. He won't do that unless he's healthy and rested, and right now, the latter doesn't look like a very good bet.

Thoughts?

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12-12-2009, 08:29 PM
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Yes. But for different reasons: Greiss can't develop if he sits on his ass all season. If he is our future, he needs to be given icetime to become one.

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12-12-2009, 08:31 PM
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Nabby is aging and can't keep up his prior pace, plus, as you said, Greiss needs to develop.

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12-12-2009, 08:44 PM
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Incase you guys haven't noticed, We're losing even with Greiss.


It's not the goalies, It's the friggin team. Defense and Offense are playing like crap.

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12-12-2009, 08:44 PM
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This is my main issue with McLellan. Nabokov is the most competitive goaltender I have seen since Patrick Roy. He hates losing, and most of all, he hates being given days off.

Sometimes you just need a coach who will tell his all-world goalie to take a seat on the bench and shut up. It's not easy to tell the foundation of your franchise over the past decade that he isn't going to play as much as he's used to. I haven't seen anything from McLellan that makes me believe he has the guts to do this.

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12-12-2009, 10:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blades of Glory View Post
This is my main issue with McLellan. Nabokov is the most competitive goaltender I have seen since Patrick Roy. He hates losing, and most of all, he hates being given days off.

Sometimes you just need a coach who will tell his all-world goalie to take a seat on the bench and shut up. It's not easy to tell the foundation of your franchise over the past decade that he isn't going to play as much as he's used to. I haven't seen anything from McLellan that makes me believe he has the guts to do this.
Agreed. I would even go as far as to say it's borderline too much ego for Nabby.

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12-12-2009, 11:25 PM
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Agreed. I would even go as far as to say it's borderline too much ego for Nabby.
Nabby does have an ego - no broderline about it! Some of things he's been saying over the last several months lead me to believe that it may be to much.

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12-13-2009, 03:54 AM
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Originally Posted by VP and GM View Post
Nabby does have an ego - no broderline about it! Some of things he's been saying over the last several months lead me to believe that it may be to much.
Not at all, he is a great goalie & he knows it. Ego/competitiveness makes great players great. I wish JT & Marleau had the same type of ego. Wouldn't it be great if we had JT or Marleau with an Edge?

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12-13-2009, 04:37 AM
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nabby just says what he thinks instead of all the North American players who stick to their cliche and "PC" responses.

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12-13-2009, 05:14 AM
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Id like to see greiss get two starts in a row but after the more or less week break I can't see nabby being sidelined.

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12-13-2009, 03:07 PM
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Quote from the Merc:

"I go up to Nabby and I tell him he's playing or I tell him he's not," McLellan said. "I probably asked Nabby a little bit more how he felt, that type of stuff, last year. This year it's more me telling him, 'You're playing,' and away we go."

There's a different between being slightly cocky/having confidence and being an arrogant *****. Of course I'm not in the locker room, but some of the quotes and interviews from Nabby would lead to believe he's leaning towards the ***** direction. I wonder what his teammates think of that.

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12-13-2009, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by dumpnchase View Post
Not at all, he is a great goalie & he knows it. Ego/competitiveness makes great players great. I wish JT & Marleau had the same type of ego. Wouldn't it be great if we had JT or Marleau with an Edge?
Competitive Edge and Ego are different things. Both *can* be a part of what makes a player great.

Ego can have a negative effect on the team if you think your a great player and you really are not - Nabby is not a great player in my mind, sure we can debate and agree to disagree. I think this is the problem - Nabber with an Ego that thinks he's a great player yet his play has not generally shown it. He just does not have the awards and or championships to have an Ego. He is not Patrick Roy, Marty Boudour...

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12-14-2009, 12:28 AM
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If being a little cocky gets wins, I don't really mind it.

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12-14-2009, 01:47 AM
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If being a little cocky gets wins, I don't really mind it.
I don't either... unless it's the playoffs and we don't get the wins...

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12-14-2009, 05:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VP and GM View Post
...Nabby is not a great player in my mind, sure we can debate and agree to disagree. I think this is the problem - Nabber with an Ego that thinks he's a great player yet his play has not generally shown it. He just does not have the awards and or championships to have an Ego. He is not Patrick Roy, Marty Boudour...
I think the biggest difference between how you & I look at Nabby & NHL goalies is that. Guys like Nabby, Miller, Turco, Luongo... are great goalies while guys like Brodeur & Roy are not great goalies they are best of the best, they are the type of goalies that come along only once every 10-30 years. You can't compare anyone else with them.

Nabby is a great player, there is a reason Nabby is Russia's starter. Only a handful of GMs in the NHL would say no to having Nabby as their starting goalie.

He is our best goalie, and it is his right to have an ego.

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12-14-2009, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VP and GM View Post
Competitive Edge and Ego are different things. Both *can* be a part of what makes a player great.

Ego can have a negative effect on the team if you think your a great player and you really are not - Nabby is not a great player in my mind, sure we can debate and agree to disagree. I think this is the problem - Nabber with an Ego that thinks he's a great player yet his play has not generally shown it. He just does not have the awards and or championships to have an Ego. He is not Patrick Roy, Marty Boudour...
His world championship gold medal would say different I think.

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12-14-2009, 04:05 PM
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His world championship gold medal would say different I think.
On the international level - yes. At the NHL level - no.

Just because a player has won internationally a world champtionship does not mean he's ego should carry to the NHL level. Different teams and situations completely.

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12-14-2009, 04:21 PM
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On the international level - yes. At the NHL level - no.

Just because a player has won internationally a world champtionship does not mean he's ego should carry to the NHL level. Different teams and situations completely.
That makes no sense to me.

He's won at a very high level, in a very competitive and well regarded competition against some of the best in the world.

How is that not relevant? He may or may not have an ego issue, but to say he's proven nothing at a very high level is incorrect.

This team would have a LOT more losses this season if it wasn't for Nabby.

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12-14-2009, 04:25 PM
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Originally Posted by dumpnchase View Post
I think the biggest difference between how you & I look at Nabby & NHL goalies is that. Guys like Nabby, Miller, Turco, Luongo... are great goalies while guys like Brodeur & Roy are not great goalies they are best of the best, they are the type of goalies that come along only once every 10-30 years. You can't compare anyone else with them.

Nabby is a great player, there is a reason Nabby is Russia's starter. Only a handful of GMs in the NHL would say no to having Nabby as their starting goalie.

He is our best goalie, and it is his right to have an ego.
I don't really compare Nabbys skills or talents to the best of the best
great ones as that would not be fair. Ego is not a skill or talent, it's, well a personality attribute and or a badge that great goalies can have. As Nabber is
not a great best of the best goalie in both our minds - hey we agree!

I don't believe that being an NHL starting goalie alone warrants the ego badge. Sure, at the international level which is a different team, with different people, etc.
Nabber can have an ego.

The ego says that i'm a better player than you and the team respectively, to me this is a problem if your not a best of the best player specific to that team situation. I would not want this on my team. Pointing fingers and not taking responsibility / accontability to me reeks of ego, the heated chat with GM DW over the summer sounds like ego, etc.

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12-14-2009, 04:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dumpnchase View Post
He is our best goalie, and it is his right to have an ego.
I agree. However, it's also McLellan's job to check that ego and do what's best for the team and the goaltenders regardless of what Nabokov's ego says.

If Nabokov is ready, he'll want to play. Heck, even if Nabokov is only at 85%, he'll want to play. It is the head coach's responsibility to overrule that.

It is better for the team to enter May with a goaltender who's played in fewer than 70 games, Olympics included. It is better for the team to have a backup goaltender who has seen some action, has some confidence, and can be relied upon by the team. It is better for the organization to have a better read on the value of Greiss whether for contract, planning, or trade purposes. It is better for the team to see how their backup does against quality opponents and in successive starts.....not just against scrub teams or in the finale of a back-to-back pair. How Nabokov *feels* less than 24 hours before a start has no bearing on any of these.

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12-16-2009, 02:59 PM
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I think this blog addresses some of the concerns about Nabokov's playing time.

Sharks, Nabokov Have Big Trouble North of 60

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12-16-2009, 03:46 PM
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Originally Posted by sharkscribe View Post
I think this blog addresses some of the concerns about Nabokov's playing time.

Sharks, Nabokov Have Big Trouble North of 60
The NJ announcers did a similar analysis. 20 years of SC goaltending. 3 wins with a goalie over 70 games (2 of those Brodeur). 7 wins with a goalie over 60 games. 10 wins with goalies below 60.

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12-16-2009, 05:21 PM
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I think they should also, the key is to make the playoffs healthy while still preparing for the future. A lot of teams are giving the upstarts goalies a lot of games.

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12-16-2009, 06:49 PM
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The simple fact is that if Nabby starts another back to back TM isnt doing his job. Hell, he needs to sit more than that but Nabs starting on the b&b's is just stupid.

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12-16-2009, 07:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sharkscribe View Post
I think this blog addresses some of the concerns about Nabokov's playing time.

Sharks, Nabokov Have Big Trouble North of 60
Some quotes:
Quote:
On a much brighter note, it seems Evgeni Nabokov is setting his own schedule these days.
Quote:
Todd McLellan is a good coach, so it’s hard to believe he’s the one making the decision to put Nabokov on pace for 77 starts this season.
Quote:
But McLellan knows better, so we should assume he’s not the one deciding to run his goaltender into ground. That makes me wonder who gave Nabokov the green light to set his own schedule, and what gives Nabokov the right to decide when he starts or sits?
Quote:
Perhaps Nabokov really has been given clearance to set his own schedule...
From DP, and quoted just a few posts above...

Quote:
This season, McLellan added, his goalie has less of a voice in determining what games he will play than a year ago.

"I go up to Nabby and I tell him he's playing or I tell him he's not," McLellan said. "I probably asked Nabby a little bit more how he felt, that type of stuff, last year. This year it's more me telling him, 'You're playing,' and away we go."

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