Nikolai Khabibulin cleared waivers today and is expected to be traded by week’s end. Speculation has been for a while LA Kings will be the destination for the once dominant goalie.
Although not able to serve as the captain in games, Loungo has been officially announced as the captain of the Canucks. Due to NHL rules, he will not be able to wear the “C” but he is clearly the leader of the team.
In discussing the honor, Loungo said “”I think you lead by example, that’s the main thing. Any time you’re in the arena, you want to be fully dedicated to what you’re doing whether it’s on the ice, in the gym or in the locker-room.
All goalies should take Loungo’s message and implement it into their approach into playing the position and game. Dedication to your craft leads to hard work. Hard work tends to lead to better performance. Both will be noticed by teammates and, for most, they will elevate their own games.
Getting others to elevate their performance is what leaders do. A goalie who has become a leader now has teammates who will do whatever it takes to help him win games. Everyone wins when the goalie takes the time to become a team leader.
In the latest Hockey News, the staff compiled an index for current NHL teams “to measure how effectively a team can rely on its netminders.” This “objective” list ranked “the NHL’s 60 goalies based on save percentage, goals against average, save percentage on the penalty kill, percentage of games in which the goalie was pulled, percentage of games giving up five goals or more, winning percentage and shutout percentage” from the 2007-08 season. Obviously the lower the score, the better the ranking. Each team’s goalie scores were weighed based on how often each goalie is expected to play.
As David Letterman would do, here are to Top Ten:
10. Chicago. Goalies – Cristobol Huet and Nikolai Khabibulin. Score 173.50 points
9. Minnesota. Goalies – Niklas Backstrom and Josh Harding. Score 160.1 points
8. New York Rangers. Goalies – Henrik Lundqvist and Stephen Valiquette. Score 155.1 points.
7. Dallas Stars. Goalies – Marty Turco and Tobias Stephan. Score 147.5 points
6. Nashville Predators. Goalies – Dan Ellis and Pekka Rinne. Score 137.0 points
5. New Jersey Devils. Goalies – Martin Brodeur and Kevin Weeks. Score 134.3 points
4. Anahiem Ducks. Goalies – J-S Giguere and Jonas Hiller. Score 128.9 points
3. Detroit Red Wings. Goalies – Chris Osgood and Ty Conklin. Score 123.0 points
2. San Jose Sharks. Goalies – Evgeni Nabokov and Brian Boucher. Score 121.2 points
For everyone wanting to know about the local team, Colorado Avalanche. They came in 29th (quick reminder, there are only 30 teams). It could be a very long year for Avalanche fans.
Another editorial from Montreal about the habs retiring Roy’s #33.
“Saint Patrick he is not. Not even close. But given the malicious role the asinine Tremblay played in compelling Roy’s departure, it’s time for the Canadiens to honour the last of their truly great players. Welcome home, Patrick.”
As the writer who gave Roy his nickname, St Patrick, Red Fisher followed Patrick throughout his 10-year Habs career. Writing about the jersey retirement, Fisher recounts a different side of Patrick Roy.
Controversy has been a recurring theme with Roy during his career, and yet I also have seen him when his gentleness has moved people to tears. I have told this story before, but it bears repeating because I remember it leaving me giddy with pleasure.
It happened following a Canadiens morning practice in Quebec City. There was a game to be played that night, but now only Roy remained on the ice, waiting for a 10-year-old to join him.
The boy was born to pain, and lived with it bravely. He had this dream of going one-on-one with his idol, Roy.
So there they were at the Quebec Colisée, Roy skating in little circles, sending up small shivers of ice pellets, rattling the blade of his stick on the ice before settling into a crouch in his crease, looking every inch like a guy in the moments before Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final. The boy’s mother looked on nervously, watching her child who hadn’t smiled or laughed nearly often enough in his young life.
“Okay … I’m ready,” Roy finally yelled at the boy. “Show me your best.”
It took a long time for the boy, skating on his matchstick legs, to close the 15 feet separating him from Roy’s crease. A wobbly shot … a desperate lunge from Roy and … goal! Roy slammed his stick on the ice in mock anger. “Try that again,” he muttered at the boy, who by now had a reason to smile. “I’ll bet you can’t do that again.”
Another wobbly shot. Another goal.
Ten minutes of goal after goal followed – and after each one the boy would raise his stick skyward, his face lighting up with smiles that grew into a delighted laugh. His mother looked on from her Colisée seat – and cried.
“That was a nice thing you did this morning,” I told Roy later that day. “It must have been hard.”
“It was easy,” Roy said.
To read the entire Fisher article, please see http://www.faceoff.com/hockey/head2head/h2hstory.html?id=286954a7-74b1-477e-9152-c93253daa3ad&sponsor=gatorade
With the announcement of the retirment of Roy’s #33, TSN complied the Top Ten greatest moments of Roy playing for the Les Canadiens de Montreal.