May 27, 2003

Patrick Roy of the Colorado Avalanche is set to announce his retirement after 18 seasons. So where would he fit in a 'greatest goalie ever' discussion?

posted by gspm to hockey at 09:52 AM - 26 comments

Curious timing with game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals set for tonight. Well, there are lots of days on which to retire but you'd figure that all hockey eyes would be looking to New Jersey tonight.

posted by gspm at 09:55 AM on May 27, 2003

Is "winningest" a word? If it is, it shouldn't be.

posted by squealy at 11:38 AM on May 27, 2003

I'd have to think he's at least the greatest goalie of the post-expansion era. With the changes in equipment, the league, and the playoffs, it's tougher to compare with the past than most such arguments. He was never a great puck-handler, but apart from that his impact on today's goaltending is immense--just ask the two goalies facing off tonight.

posted by Mookieproof at 11:42 AM on May 27, 2003

well, the press conference is tomorrow, it was the media that dug it out and shifted the focus for today. I don't mind though, for the first time that I've noticed, the top 2 stories on are about hockey... how often do we see that? I'm not even a Roy fan but I'd put him right at the top of the list, no question.

posted by Bernreuther at 12:02 PM on May 27, 2003

I'd have no problem with someone saying he's the greatest goalie in the history of the NHL. Regular season or post-season, he's been one of the best. He's played during the defence-first-1990's and the offence-first-1980's, so it's not like he's only had one style of play to contend with. I think that if Brodeur can win this Stanley Cup and win a couple of Vezina trophies, he might end up retiring with a pretty good claim as well. If Hasek's career had been a bit longer, he'd probably make a decent claim as well. Plante, Dryden, Hall and a bunch of the older goalies are worth discussing as well. But Roy is the first one I think of as "best ever".

posted by grum@work at 12:03 PM on May 27, 2003

On the other hand, Roy was something of a liability when it came time to drop the gloves. Chris Osgood gave him a beatdown a few times--Billy Smith probably would have killed him.

posted by Mookieproof at 12:49 PM on May 27, 2003

I'm not a big Pat Roy fan myself, but I think he has a pretty legitimate claim on best ever. He and Hasek revolutionized the position, Roy contributing the giant-ass jersey that functions like a net. Is that thing size 90? I agree with Grum about Brodeur. Brodeur is a fine fine goalie. Should be a real interesting game tonight. Go Ducks! (I can't believe I'm cheering for the Ducks. I despise Disney and think that "Mighty Ducks" is an extremely inappropriate moniker for a professional sports team.)

posted by alex_reno at 01:19 PM on May 27, 2003

I don’t know. I guess if you stick that “modern era” thing in there you’ve got something, but I’d probably put Jacques Plante on the top of my list. Maybe Terry Sawchuk would be close, too. A look at the two pictures I linked to should show that comparing them to Roy in today’s equipment is an apples and oranges sort of deal. I think Hasek was better than Roy while he played, and I think Brodeur has a shot at being better than Roy, but for now I’ve got no problem calling Roy the Best in the Modern Era.

posted by Samsonov14 at 02:02 PM on May 27, 2003

Nice summary of his career here. I'm with grum. With a longer career Hasek would have surpassed him, but I'd say Roy deserves the #1.

posted by Succa at 02:07 PM on May 27, 2003

If nothing else, I think Brodeur's 6-16 playoff OT record prevents him from being able to match Roy. (I don't hold it against him, but Brodeur's also never played on anything but a top-notch defensive club.) I would also argue that great as Hasek was, he didn't change goaltending like Roy. Roy's style of playing goal is now the standard; Giguere even wears the same throat protector. Hasek was a freak of nature who played in a way that can't be taught.

posted by Mookieproof at 02:19 PM on May 27, 2003

Roy was the best of all time, no question, until the past couple playoff meltdowns. What was once an 'infallible gamer' is no longer.

posted by garfield at 02:39 PM on May 27, 2003

Roy is the best ever. He's also an asshat. I'm a Habs fan.

posted by Cap'n Swing at 02:40 PM on May 27, 2003

My favourite Roy moment would probably be that wink he gave to the Los Angeles Kings forward Tomas Sandstrom after making a save in overtime in the 1993 Stanley Cup Finals. It summed up everything that he stands for: excellence, arrogance, entertainment. And if you think that what Giguere is doing right now is impressive (carrying an improbable team to the finals), remember that Roy did it twice with the Canadiens. Once as a raw 20 year-old rookie!

posted by grum@work at 02:42 PM on May 27, 2003

I like the Statue of Liberty gaffe in last year's Game 6 conf finals vs the Wings. Arrogance and entertainment. Excellent highlight. I think he's got to be the best or the "best since" someone from a long time ago. It will be interesting to see what kind of career numbers Brodeur can put up with Roy's numbers to chase. He doesn't have the Vezina trophies but he's won a few Cups and an Olympic gold medal.

posted by gspm at 04:27 PM on May 27, 2003

I like the Statue of Liberty gaffe in last year's Game 6 conf finals vs the Wings. Arrogance and entertainment. Excellent highlight. I think I've watched that replay more times than I've had a hot meal.

posted by adampsyche at 04:27 PM on May 28, 2003

Just so this doesn't have to be FPP material, Booby Clarke strikes again. I wonder how Felix the Cat feels?

posted by garfield at 04:37 PM on May 28, 2003

I don't disagree with him ditching Cechmanek. The guy was a damn sieve half the time. Still, just a second-rounder?

posted by wfrazerjr at 05:27 PM on May 28, 2003

Bobby Clark is a retard. Not exactly a newsflash, I know, but if he hadn't talked about how bad Cechmanek was, he could have gotten a lot more for a guy who was 2nd in goals against, 3rd in save percentage, and tied for 7th in wins and shutouts in the regular season. And before you point out that he sucked in the postseason (and I can't deny that he wasn't exactly "clutch"), the whole freaking team fell apart. Here. Roenick couldn't score, Leclair couldn't score, Gagne couldn't score, and Amonte couldn't score. I'll admit that Roenick played his ass off, but he was one of the few. If everyone had played as hard as Primeau had, we wouldn't be talking about this right now. Giguere or Brodeur might have been able to get them through, but pretty much any other goaltender would have fared the same. Look, I hate the Flyers, and I get huge kick out of watching them stupidly steer their "unsinkable" ship right at an iceberg every year, but this frustrates me just because it's such poor management. Cechmanek sucked, but compared to the rest of the team he was on par. The guy was top 5 in the league during the regular season. If Bobby Clark had managed to keep from opening his big stupid mouth and denigrating Roman in public, the Flyers would have brought home much more than a 2nd rounder in return. Just plain stupid.

posted by Samsonov14 at 07:02 PM on May 28, 2003

It wouldn't surprise me if the Kings turn around and trade him for something of value. A second-round pick for a decent goalie is a steal.

posted by Succa at 08:59 PM on May 28, 2003

Hmmm ... well, St. Louis could still use ... nevermind. I'd still rather have Grant Fuhr back.

posted by wfrazerjr at 10:53 AM on May 29, 2003

I think the argument for Roy being the best ever is also related to the records he holds. When somebody breaks the records I think that is when they enter the sweepstakes for the best ever.

posted by ITLinebacker at 03:08 PM on May 29, 2003

I think the argument for Roy being the best ever is also related to the records he holds. When somebody breaks the records I think that is when they enter the sweepstakes for the best ever.

posted by ITLinebacker at 03:09 PM on May 29, 2003

dar double post....still getting used to settings in Safari

posted by ITLinebacker at 03:10 PM on May 29, 2003

I don't think just breaking his records will be enough to unseat Roy's position at the top of the heap. If they are strictly counting numbers (wins, shutouts) then a decent goalie that hangs around for 20-22 years could do it (especially in today's "defence-first" league). I think Brodeur will eventually pass all of Roy's records (except for Conn Smythe trophies), but unless he throws together 3 or 4 seasons in a row where he is the hands-down BEST goalie in the league (something he hasn't done until this year, hence the lack of Vezina trophies), I can't see him as being "the best of all time" like I can with Roy. For a while, Marcel Dionne was second in career total points in NHL history but nobody with any sense would have ever considered him the 2nd best player in history. Cy Young has the most wins of any pitcher in MLB history, but is rarely in the discussion for "best pitcher of all time". Total career stats don't always tell the tale.

posted by grum@work at 03:42 PM on May 29, 2003

Brodeur's already beaten Roy's career Goals total.

posted by Succa at 04:21 PM on May 29, 2003

<disclaimer>Av's Fan</disclaimer> Brodeur might be the greatest, but he'll never get that recognition unless he leaves New Jersey and puts up similar numbers elsewhere. We'll always wonder whether it was him or the system as long as he's a Devil. I have to go with Roy for the greatest of the modern era.

posted by offsides at 10:56 AM on May 30, 2003

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