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NHL's Top 10 2012 Shootout Goaltenders

Mike BurseCorrespondent IMarch 10, 2012

NHL's Top 10 2012 Shootout Goaltenders

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    It really was a shame that we never had the opportunity to witness Hasek's potential prowess in shootouts. He always had an answer to any shot that came his way, whether it was with his blocker, glove, pad, foot, head, back, stick: anything he could throw in it's way.

    He was neither a butterfly nor a stand up goalie. He has a style all his own. With his amazing flexibility and athleticism he haunted the dreams of NHL shooters for years. If only the shootout was around in his era. At the very least it would have made for some amazing highlight reel saves from time to time.

    So here are this year's best NHL shootout goaltenders. A minimum of 14 shots against were required to make this list (approximately four shootouts).

Henrik Lundqvist

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    He is 30 years old and 6'1" 195 lbs for the New York Rangers. He has faced 22 shots in the shootout while only allowing six goals for a .727 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to three wins and three losses while he has been in net for shootouts.

    In today's NHL, there is no better goaltender. Look out for the Rangers in the playoffs this year. They have a solid team with good coaching and a goaltender capable of putting his team on his back and carrying them to the final.

Craig Anderson

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    He is 30 years old, and 6'2", 183 lbs for the Ottawa Senators. He has faced 22 shots in the shootout while only allowing six goals for a .727 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to five wins and one loss while he has been in net for shootouts.

    The Senators appear to have found a short term answer to their recent goaltending woes. At least until either newly-acquired Ben Bishop or top-prospect Robin Lehner are ready to take over the crease.

Kari Lehtonen

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    He is 28 years old, standing at 6'4", 217 lbs for the Dallas Stars. He has faced 36 shots in the shootout while only allowing nine goals for a 0.750 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to six wins and three losses while he has been in net for shootouts.

    After many years and many injuries with the Atlanta Thrashers (now the Winnipeg Jets), he has really developed his game. He should continue to be a solid goaltender that could lead the Stars to the Stanley Cup one day.

Devan Dubnyk

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    He is 25 years old at 6'5", 210 lbs for the Edmonton Oilers. He has faced 21 shots in the shootout, while only allowing five goals for a .762 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to four wins and one loss while he has been in net for shootouts.

    He has bode his time in the Oilers system waiting for his chance to become their number one goaltender. He has been steady the past couple seasons and could be ready to take the reins as soon as next year for this young Edmonton team.

Marc- Andre Fleury

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    He is 27 years old, at 6'2",180 lbs for the Pittsburgh Penguins. He has faced 39 shots in the shootout while only allowing nine goals for a 0.769 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to nine wins and two losses while he has been in net for shootouts.

    Fleury is second in shootout shots-against, only behind Roberto Luongo (42 shots against with a .595 save percentage) this season. He has been the one constant amongst major injuries to the likes of Kris Letang, Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Jordan Staal over the past couple of seasons.

    He is underrated, and is the main reason why the Penguins have remained a Stanley Cup contender in spite of their many injuries over the past couple seasons.

Corey Crawford

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    The 27-year-old, 6'2", 208-pounder from the Chicago Blackhawks, Crawford has faced 14 shots in the shootout while only allowing three goals for a .786 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to three wins and two losses while he has been in net for shootouts.

    While he is still in a battle for the number one goaltending job with Ray Emery in Chicago, he has proven to be the more effective of the two in shootout circumstances. He will need to step up his game to help the Blackhawks win another Stanley Cup in the coming seasons.

Martin Brodeur

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    Brodeur is 39 years old and 6'2", 220 lbs for the New Jersey Devils. He has faced 16 shots in the shootout while only allowing three goals for an .813 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to five wins and one loss while he has been in net for shootouts.

    Brodeur and the Devils had an uncharacteristically-tough season last year. But both he and his team have come back this season much more solid. How many years does the the all-time winningest goaltender have left to play the game? Who knows, but one thing is for sure, he will be missed when he decides to retire, both in New Jersey and around the NHL.

Jimmy Howard

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    The Red Wings' goalie is 27 years old, standing at 6' and 210 lbs. He has faced 19 shots in the shootout while only allowing three goals for an .842 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to five wins and one loss while he has been in net for shootouts.

    Detroit General Manager Ken Holland was very patient with Howard, leaving him to develop his game in the minors for four-plus seasons. The team is now being rewarded for this patience. Howard is a solid goaltender who stops the shots he is supposed to and gives his team a chance to win on a nightly basis.

Semyon Varlamov

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    Varlamov is 23 years old and 6'2", 209 lbs, playing for the Colorado Avalanche. He has faced 21 shots in the shootout, while only allowing two goals for a .905 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to win all seven shootouts he has been in net for.

    Colorado gave up on a couple of high draft picks in order to secure their goaltender of now and the future. At the beginning of the season, he started slowly while he adjusted to new surroundings. But now he is starting to show the Washington Capitals that they got rid of the wrong goaltender.

Tim Thomas

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    Thomas is 37 years old, standing at 5'11", 210 lbs for the Boston Bruins. He has faced 16 shots in the shootout while only allowing 1 goal for a 0.938 save percentage. These numbers have helped his team to five-out-of-five while he has been in net for shootouts.

    He definitely still looks like a road hockey goalie out there at times. But like Hasek, his style is all his own and he still makes NHL shooters scratch their heads.

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