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Where Are The Young, Canadian Goaltenders?

from Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun,

Quick’s outstanding regular season makes him full value for being a contender for the Vezina Trophy as the league’s top goaltender. His fellow finalists in Vezina voting are a Swede, Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers, and a Finn, Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators.

There’s no denying that struggles at the position have been the main reason for Canada’s failure to win recent world junior championships.

There’s a chance it could just be cyclical, especially if more goaltenders like the Phoenix Coyotes’ Mike Smith emerge during the next few seasons. But based on where Canadian goaltenders have been taken in the draft in recent years, there is certainly a lull in promising youngsters being developed in the country.

So who is to blame? Former NHLer Ron Tugnutt, who know works as Hockey Canada’s goalie consultant, believes you can start with the Canadian major junior hockey infrastructure.

“Too many junior teams are taking the easy way out by bringing in European goaltenders and not giving Canadian kids the chance to develop,” Tugnutt said Friday in a telephone interview. “Who is to say the next Marty Brodeur or the next Patrick Roy is here but just isn’t getting the chance to play?

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Non-NHL Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

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I guess Luongo, Smith, Fleury, Price etc are bad goalies. Woe Canada!

Posted by timbits on 06/02/12 at 01:37 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

A friend of mine and I were discussing this a couple weeks ago. It really is surprising how thin Canada is between the pipes. Luongo and Fleury? One seems to crumble in high pressure situations, and the other has been battling inconsistent play for almost two seasons now. And yes, I’m aware that Luongo was the goaltender in 2010. He didn’t exactly set the world on fire then, and he sure hasn’t since.

Mike Smith? If he can replicate his play again next season, and the season after that, then yes Canada has a goaltender. Brodeur will likely be retired by then, so he’s out. That leaves Price and Ward, and while both are good goaltenders, I don’t think either could be considered a top 5 goaltender.

Right now, I’d say the best goaltenders are Quick, Lundqvist, Rinne, Thomas, Miller, Howard and Kipprsouff. I wouldn’t take any Canadian goaltender over any of those guys.

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 06/02/12 at 02:00 PM ET

SYF's avatar

The Preds also have 6’5” Anders Lindback as backup to Rinne.  He’s probably just as good as Rinne.

Posted by SYF from the C7.R, flyin' low and feelin' mean on 06/02/12 at 03:01 PM ET

Avatar

I guess Luongo, Smith, Fleury, Price etc are bad goalies.

I know right?  Any one of those guys could’ve helped turn around “Canada‚Äôs failure to win recent world junior championships”, especially because we all know that NHL veterans are allowed to play in the world juniors.

Posted by Garth on 06/02/12 at 03:21 PM ET

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Posted by Garth on 06/02/12 at 02:21 PM ET 

Uh yeah whatever!

Posted by timbits on 06/02/12 at 04:21 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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