March 23, 2006

Belfour's season is over: The Leafs placed Belfour on injured
reserve Thursday, ending a disappointing campaign for the
40-year old netminder.

posted by wingnut4life to hockey at 03:48 PM - 24 comments

As a Leafs fan, I'm saddened that his final days as a Leaf may be on the injured reserve list and not playing in front of the fans one last time. While he may have struggled at times this year, there were many times he was the best player in a Leaf jersey. The highlights being when he'd stonewall the opposition for 3 or 4 shots in a row and the crowd would chant "Eddie! Eddie! Eddie!" I suspect the Leafs will buy out his remaining year on the contract and go with Tellqvist (unless they have their eyes on another goalie on another team). There are a couple of young goalies in the Toronto system that could be quite good (they were starters for their respective countries at the World Junior Tournament), but their time is not here. Yet. I tip my hat to an underrated future Hall of Famer and wish him well.

posted by grum@work at 04:00 PM on March 23, 2006

As a Wings fan I always looked forward to watching Belfour in the other net whenever we went up against him. When he was on his game it was like trying to score through a brick wall. I'm sorry if his career ends this way as it'd be a shame for one of the great ones to go out on the IR list.

posted by commander cody at 04:14 PM on March 23, 2006

This is not the way to end a Hall of Fame career, but he's been aging rapidly behind that inconsistent defence. I wish him all the best, but this might be as good an exit line as he's going to get. If the Leafs go with Tellqvist, they'll want a solid backup to spell him if he doesn't step up. ajaffe mentioned Kevin Weekes being available, and he'd be a good fit. He's got a pretty good track record supporting & mentoring up & coming Swedish phenoms. But Tellqvist isn't quite good enough by himself to start for a contender, I fear. I hope I'm wrong, and he & J.S. Aubin have a serious throwdown for the starter's job in a year or two.

posted by chicobangs at 04:18 PM on March 23, 2006

I will never forget Eddie's performance in game 5 of the 2000 Stanley Cup Finals. He truly was "Eddie the Eagle" that night. I stayed up to watch the whole game and only got like three and a half hours of sleep. I was about worthless at work the next day. Alas, all good things must come to an end. Not everyone can end their career on a high note but he did get his name on The Cup in 1999.

posted by njsk8r20 at 04:30 PM on March 23, 2006

I feel like a jerk for having an initial reaction that going on the IR is a convenient out for Belfour given his reputation for having a tough time when he is challenged by his backup. And Tellqvist has had better numbers this year. In any case, a lousy end to his season and possibly his career.

posted by gspm at 04:50 PM on March 23, 2006

eddie, eddie, eddie, good a goaltender as there has been in the league in the last ten years, i tip my cap....quite often the only reason to watch the leafs....tough way to end his career, if in fact it is at an end. thanks eddie, ya could have used a few nhl defensemen in front of you. time to go racing!

posted by tommybiden at 04:55 PM on March 23, 2006

The Leafs' D hasn't exactly been bad the last few seasons, just inconsistent. It's been McCabe & Kaberle and whoever else decided to show up for any given game, which meant there'd be these long stretches of decent bluelinery followed by spasms of intermittent infuriating idiocy. How Belfour, who for most of his career had a temper for the ages, managed to get through the last couple of years without taking someone's head off is a minor miracle all by itself.

posted by chicobangs at 05:08 PM on March 23, 2006

As a Wings fan, I will truly miss the anger I felt every time I heard, "Belfour with the save!" They always said that goaltender's were a different breed and they were a just a little eccentric. Eddie "The Eagle" Belfour personified that saying, living up to that image a few times in the past. I feel very fortunate to have been able to watch him play all of these years, and I truly think that he would be very honored if he knew that I put him right up there with Patty Roy on the list of goalies I loved to hate.

posted by wingnut4life at 06:15 PM on March 23, 2006

Tommytrump I don't think that McCabe and kaberle can really be classified under the not very good defensemen category. It is a disappointment to see Belfour go, as he is one of the best goalies of all time and is very underrated. While he doesn't top any goalie stat I can think of (maybe I'm wrong), he is still near the top in most categories. Fortunatly for the Leafs, Tellqvist seems that he can carry the load at goaltender for a little while.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 07:35 PM on March 23, 2006

YYM, I wish you were right. He's getting his Swedish ass handed to him tonight against Montreal.

posted by chicobangs at 08:06 PM on March 23, 2006

i'm a born and bred leaf fan.....former season ticket holder. kaberle is a no. 3 defenseman on a good team and mccabe a 4 or 5. you're fooling yourself to think any differently.

posted by tommybiden at 08:24 PM on March 23, 2006

tommytrump, you're fooling yourself if you think that. As of tonight, McCabe is second in scoring in the league among D-Men with 62 pts with 12 PPG's and a -4 on the season, and Kaberle is fifth with 57 pts. with 4 PPG's and a -7. Toronto might not be having the year that they wanted, but those two D-Men are by far a couple of the best in the league.

posted by wingnut4life at 08:44 PM on March 23, 2006

the best of a bad lot. mccabe is slow and a slew foot artist. kaberle is quick but not a great defender. i am the way and the truth. the leafs need a LOT of help. and they're not it.

posted by tommybiden at 09:21 PM on March 23, 2006

Great goalie, but at 41 and less than ordinary? Yep. It's time. Leafs are a prime candidate to suck for years.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 10:25 PM on March 23, 2006

Back when Chicago actually had a hockey team, Eddie fuckin' rocked. I was happy to see him prosper elsewhere. I still I have my autographed card (O-Pee-Chee, I think) and puck. A not-so-great end to a great career. Thanks, Eddie.

posted by willthrill72 at 12:39 AM on March 24, 2006

As a wings fan, all I remember about Eddie is his refusal to shake hands with the wings after they eliminated the Hawks from the playoffs. So long jerk.

posted by anutherbrick at 03:25 AM on March 24, 2006

You mean back when Bill Wirtz actually put MONEY into his team, Will. I remember hating Eddie for beating my Stars, and then loving him for playing his butt off in the Cup finals in '99 and '00, and then laughing at his drunken antics. If this is the end of his career (and who says it is? Goalies are like left handed relief pitchers: as long as they're decent, they play forever), he's gonna be missed.

posted by Lissa at 03:47 AM on March 24, 2006

spasms of intermittent infuriating idiocy. Nice. Very nice. Lester would be proud.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 05:36 AM on March 24, 2006

YYM, I wish you were right. He's getting his Swedish ass handed to him tonight against Montreal. Damn, I just picked him up for one of my fantasy teams. Speaking of backups turned starters, Peter Budaj isn't doing to bad.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 12:25 PM on March 24, 2006

Great, YYM! First you jinx Tellqvist, now you're trying to jinx Budaj? Watch, next game he'll probably having something like a .455 save percentage and a 12.00 GAA. Have you no compassion? Please, whatever you do, don't mention any more goalies. For the love of God, please!!!

posted by wingnut4life at 02:13 PM on March 24, 2006

I don't want them to bad, they're on my fantasy team. But just in case what you say is true... Kiprussoff Hasek Vokoun Huet Broduer Gerber Miller Joesph and Auld Now the Wings will have no opposition, hahahaha.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 03:42 PM on March 24, 2006

wingnut i must commend you for your picture posted on the 24th i hate the avs as much as the blues, and as for myself I am a RED WING fan but my greatest memory of Eddie is about 13-15 yrs ago (around playoff time if not) CHI vs STL and him beating his stick over the crossbar after i believe janney held him behind the net what shanahan put the puck in the net while laying on the ice. AHHH what memories

posted by jjmule16 at 12:14 AM on March 25, 2006

What kills me is the media keeps trying to make it look like there is still an intense Wings-Avs rivalry, but that's not the case. Nowadays, the Predators are moving up the shit-list, and the Avs have come down to earth. With that being said, YYM repeat after me: VOKOUN...VOKOUN...VOKOUN...VOKOUN...

posted by wingnut4life at 08:25 AM on March 25, 2006

>long stretches of decent bluelinery followed by spasms of intermittent infuriating idiocy. Nice phrasing.

posted by Philfromhavelock at 05:04 PM on March 25, 2006

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