Sunday, February 22, 2009

Goaltending Rebound

Funny thing with goalies; although they really need to be the foundation of a team, providing composure, stability and confidence to the club to perform, a goalie by themselves is nothing. A goalie alone wins nothing; and any good goalie will tell you that.

Goalies need their team to force shooters to take bad shots; goalies need their team to let them see the shots, and most of all the goalie needs the Defence to cover his ass when there is a rebound or a bobble or a redirection.

What we've seen in Halak's 40+ performances is that even though he is coughing up pucks like my dog in a hockey rink (where did she even get that?), the Habs defence are bailing him out. They are playing tight on him, beating up the other team, and making sure that if there is a second shot, its pretty piss poor, and if it bounces out too far, they clear it. In other words, for Halak, the team is playing for him. Halak is definitely a better rebounding goalie, playing the fact he is gonna give up the rebound, and therefore in position -- but his team knows it too.

No so much for Price. What you see with him is, when he bounces the puck out, the D has no clue; and it usually ends up in the net. Price isn't getting the same support as Halak in net -- why not?

Have his team mates bought into the Price hype, and simply expect him to be amazing? "why would he let out a rebound, he's Carey Price." Or...

Is it the opposite? Are they somehow pissed off with the kid, and not standing up for him? Maybe there is some dressing room crap, or attitude crap, I dunno, but they defintely don't play the same in front of Price as they do for Halak.

Price's style has always been very calm and low-rebounding. So maybe they just aren't expecting to have to cover his ass like they do for Halak -- but I do know this: if we want to see Carey Price be the goalie we want him to be, (or just get his GAA around 2 again) then the defence has to start being consistant no matter who is in the pipes; give Price the same respect (fear?) they give Halak.

Its a 2-way street. You need your goalie to be huge, and the defence need to make sure the goalie doesn't get thrown under the bus. Halak should probably start the majority of the games for the next couple weeks, he deserves it, and we'll see if Price starts getting the same play from his D; and then maybe he can start making saves and not letting in 5+ per game.

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