I still remember the excitement that came when the Blackhawks announced that they had brought Marty Turco aboard to play the goalie position. Turco came with a solid background at a time when the Blackhawks were turning their back on Antti Niemi and letting him go. It was thought that Turco could replace him effectively and help keep continuity in the net.
But it just wasn’t meant to be.
The Blackhawks found out that Turco wasn’t the right guy for them in the net and started rotating another new goalie in there after a short amount of time.
Corey Crawford, who had come from the Rockford Ice Hogs (the Blackhawks AHL affiliate), ended up stealing the show and became the Blackhawks' best option as goalie.
Crawford saw action in 57 games with 33 wins and 18 losses. He had 128 goals against on 1,545 shots with 1,417 saves. His total minutes played was 3,337.
Compare that against what Turco did last season, where he played in a total of 29 games with 11 wins and 11 losses. He had 82 total goals against him with 799 shots against him with a total of 717 saves.
Turco played a total of 1,631 minutes.
The Blackhawks had much more success with Crawford this past season, so that brings up a question: Will Chicago keep Turco, or will they decide to let him go and try to find someone else to back Crawford up at that position?
Turco signed just a one-year contract with the Blackhawks to start last season, and after his performance in the 2010-2011 season, it’s likely that he won’t be back.
The Blackhawks have already stated that they will be hard-pressed to get Crawford signed and ready to go for next season, but they haven’t said much about what they are going to do with Turco.
The most likely scenario is that the Blackhawks will let him walk and they will go out and find someone else to take his place.
Who would have known that it would have been Crawford that would have ended up being the best goalie for the Blackhawks this season?
Turco came in with the pedigree and the reputation for being a bit of a slow starter but a player that is both aggressive and very confident. He did struggle communicating with the defensemen at times, and at other times he tried to do too much. He also tended to be a little bit overaggressive.
The debate over whether it’s Turco or Crawford is long over. It’s clear to see which way the Blackhawks are going to go with Crawford: finding someone else to play backup and let Turco walk this offseason. There just isn’t enough there to keep him around for another season.
Do you think that the Blackhawks should let Turco walk this offseason?