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Sunday, November 23, 2008

Goaltending Prospects + Garon/Roloson

Oilers prospects update here, here and here.

Suneil Parmar ran some stats on the league vs. Oilers goaltending stats here.

Devan Dubnyk (not shown) is finally starting to round out in the AHL and is showing the same turnaround that DesLauriers did in his debut as Falcons #1 goalie - arguably better, thus far. Having our own farm team really helps.

Will Mathieu Garon extend? If so, I think 2 years will be ideal. One season to gauge his usefulness as a tutor or protector of DesLauriers, and one season to evaluate whether DesLauriers is ready for full time action with Garon, Dubnyk or someone else as backup. If not, further extension or looking for goaltending help from elsewhere at that time will be options. Locking down goaltenders to super long deals is not such a great idea in a league such as our NHL - given the nature of their injuries and their fluctuations in performance.

There is talk among fans that Garon will be peeved over this latest goaltending fiasco and will want out of Edmonton. Who knows? He's still in his prime and he could be a valuable asset for Edmonton. But anything longer than 3 year deal in any subsequent extension could end up being in the range of the "how-will-we-trade-him-now" situation experienced with Roloson due to his fluctuating degrees of usefulness to the team.

I'm starting to think it's not impossible to see the Oilers move forward without either Roloson or Garon and pick up a temporary goalie until DesLauriers or Dubnyk are ready to step in for themselves. Either that or Garon will be resigned but to a shorter term deal than most people feel he will be extended for.

Yes, Roloson is old. And yes, he can't play forever. But his performance has shown that he's still got it and that's not something anyone can deny easily.

The truth is though, neither Roloson or Garon is getting younger and at least one of them will eventually get the heeve-ho this season. And not because they're playing poorly, by any measure. It may be because Tambellini/Lowe are slowpokes at these kinds of matters and the fact that all of the goalies are playing so well that is making this decision even harder.

Speaking of goaltenders, after DesLauriers and Dubnyk have both made their debuts into the NHL (of course DesLauriers has that impressive head start), it could mean that the Oilers will soon draft some competition for Pitton and Perugini on the farms.

I would suggest drafting Jonathan Roy or Mike Lee.

Here's Dean Millard's description of Mike Lee:

Mike Lee-Fargo-USHL
The only goalie from the US version of Junior A, Lee was brilliant for team USA at the World Junior A Challenge in Camrose earlier this month. He was 4-0, with a minuscule 1.75 goals against average and a .933 save percentage. Lee used his 6.01, 185 pound frame well and bailed out his D-man anytime they got in trouble. While Canada West didn't mount a massive attack in the gold medal game, Lee was there at key times to snuff out any momentum. Lee follows the puck through traffic really well and for his efforts was named a tournament all star.

I don't know about you, but that sounds a lot like Dwayne Roloson, that traffic part. And critical of Roloson you may be, but that is one of the things he does do very well.

As for Jonathan Roy, I would argue anybody who was raised in the mold of Patrick himself has more of a good foundation in goaltending than most people do, though it doesn't guarantee that he'll be any good. It would help to get a guy like Patrick Roy involved in the organization though - and say what you will about his role on the Remparts and his reputation as a blockhead.

Genius is genius.

But regardless of the elder Roy's reputation and the younger's own as a ruffian, if it came down to picking between two skilled goalies and one of them fights while the other doesn't - I would take the figher. A competitive fire is hard to develop. Just ask Ron Hextall.

Fire is fire.

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Blogger Addicted-to-oil said...

I'm really excited for the time when Deslauriers and Dubnyk are both in the NHL. Maybe another two years and Deslauriers is starting and Dubnyk is backing him up? Who knows. Two giant goalies in the pipe. A couple of years for Garon to mentor Deslauriers, a couple of years for Dubnyk to do his thing in the AHL.

November 23, 2008 at 1:32 PM

Blogger raventalon40 said...

I think the goalie situation needs to be solved 2 years a time. Resign Garon for 2 sit on it. If they can't get an extension done before the deadline, I would suggest dealing him to a contender w/o solid goaltending because there's no guarantee he will resign in Edmonton after this year's goalie fiasco. This would also be because he will get a higher return than Dwayne Roloson in any trade.

November 23, 2008 at 5:33 PM


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