Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: ed belfour
The Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons discusses a multitude of topics in his Sunday column, but this one struck me as most pertinent given the fact that player development continues to evolve into a more systematic and borderline scientific practice in every "skater" position, but not in goal:
When the Maple Leafs selected Mikael Tellqvist with the 70th pick in the 2000 NHL Draft, not only did they believe they were getting the best young goaltender in Sweden, but they thought they were getting the most NHL-ready goalie.
They were correct about Tellqvist — he played his first game for the Leafs in the 2002-03 season, three years before the best goalie from that class would emerge. That goalie’s name: Henrik Lundqvist.
Lundqvist was the 22nd goalie chosen that year, the third Swede taken: Rick DiPietro was the first pick of that draft and a goalie named Brent Krahn went in the first round to Calgary as well. Krahn went on to play one period of NHL hockey and it wasn’t for the Flames.
Lundqvist has grown into a generational goaltender and the lesson about scouting goaltenders is clear — nobody really knows.
Ed Belfour and Curtis Joseph were never drafted. The Flames once traded up to get Trevor Kidd when Martin Brodeur was available. Craig Billington and Daryl Reaugh were taken ahead of Patrick Roy in 1984.
And the goalie selected just before Jonathan Quick was taken by Los Angeles: Kristofer Westblom? He spent this season stopping pucks for the Brampton Beast.
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
Funny how their careers have been intertwined, Joseph and Belfour. Two people, two goalies, who couldn’t have been more different in both style and substance.
One was technical, the other athletic. One was grumpy, the other friendly. One was a workout freak, the other, not so much.
And neither was considered a prospect when they were young. Both went undrafted more than once. Both spent one year playing U.S. college hockey. Both went from college to the now defunct International Hockey League. Both arrived as backups in the NHL.
Both have earned more than $50 million in what for Belfour is a certain Hall of Fame career and for Joseph one that is certainly worthy of consideration.