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Projected Role: Starting goaltender
Now that Team Canada's goaltenders have officially been named, the debate across the nation begins as to who should be named the tournament starter.
Although three goalies were named to the roster, the decision will likely boil down to Roberto Luongo or Carey Price.
Both are talented goaltenders and arguments could be made for either.
Luongo is the incumbent, having been in goal for Team Canada's gold-medal win against Team USA four years ago in Vancouver. Some, like Martin Brodeur, feel this should be the deciding factor in a tough debate.
"I think when you win the gold medal, you deserve the chance to defend it until someone takes you down," Brodeur told Tom Gulitti of The Record, via NorthJersey.com. "But, that’s just me."
Price, however, is having a better season, and this is what coach Mike Babcock and general manager Steve Yzerman should look at as they make their final decision.
Luongo has been good this year for Vancouver with a 16-10-6 record. His goals-against average sits at 2.23. Price's same stats compare with a 20-11-4 record and a 2.22 goals against.
As advanced stats tell us, however, comparing goaltenders' records and goals-against averages is pretty much useless since it does not account for the team playing in front of them. Save percentage is the only stat that matters.
Price's 2013-14 save percentage sits at .928, sixth in the NHL. He has the third-most shots against in the NHL at 1,065.
Luongo's save percentage is .922, ranking him 13th, after 894 shots against.
Eight percentage points might not seem like much, but it is quite significant when it comes to save percentage. It is, after all, the difference between seven qualified goalies in the NHL.
There is also lingering concerns about Luongo's health.
After missing three games with a groin injury in late December, the Canucks netminder returned to the ice on January 4 only to miss their game the next day with an ankle injury.
TSN's James Duthie reports that Luongo is not seriously injured, however, and that this is not a long-term injury.
As long as Luongo remains healthy, the debate between who should start in goal for Canada will likely rage on until Babcock names his starter in February. Based on play this season, it should be Price.