Goaltending Is NOT a Problem In Detroit!
The Detroit Red Wings have entered unfamiliar territory so far this season. They have found it extremely difficult to win.
However, familiar territory has also reared its head in this 2009-10 season in the form of the goaltender bashing bandwagon via disgruntled fans and poorly written news articles.
The problem is not goaltending. That has never been a problem in Detroit, although writers and fans love to claim that such is the case and, therefore, delude themselves.
Grant Fuhr was a Hall-of-Fame goaltender for the Edmonton Oilers during their cup runs in the 1980s. Fuhr would oftentimes give up five or more goals in a game, but the Oilers would still win.
They could put the biscuit in the basket!
A team cannot win by one goal in today's NHL unless their defense is impeccable, which is more difficult since obstruction is no longer allowed. Therefore, while defense still wins championships, inability to score wins nothing.
Detroit's loss to the Blues last night is a perfect example of their inability to score. The Red Wings put 42 shots on goal against former goaltender Ty Conklin, and they couldn't convert. How is this possible? Well, if it's the fault of the goaltender for losing, then it is Jimmy Howard's fault for giving up that one goal to the Blues, right? WRONG!
Only a few short nights ago, the Red Wings put a mere 31 shots on arguably the greatest goaltender of all time--Martin Brodeur--and scored three goals! But it didn't matter because New Jersey won in a shootout. New Jersey put that extra shot in the back of the goal to give the Devils the win. Therefore, it didn't matter that Martin Brodeur gave up three goals and it didn't matter whether they were "weak" goals or not. The team in front of him took care of the scoring and won because of it.
It is important to have solid goaltending to win games, but every goaltender should be allowed to give up a few goals in a game and not have to worry about his teammates taking care of the other end of the ice.
Oh, and let's not forget the Red Wings' seven period scoring drought in November. It doesn't matter if a goaltender gives up one goal or nine goals. If their teammates don't score, the team can't win.
Detroit cannot score and that is the reason they cannot win. Blaming a goaltender for a loss is like blaming a referee for a loss. It is a cop-out and it is arrogant to point the finger at any one person. If a team cannot recover from giving up a "soft" goal or having a call go against them, they are a pitiful disgrace and doomed to failure.
Let's quit kidding ourselves. Chris Osgood and Jimmy Howard are not the problem. The Detroit Red Wings cannot score! Therefore, the Detroit Red Wings cannot win. They cannot win games until they start scoring goals . . .
. . . and more goals than the other team.
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