Thursday, July 10, 2008

Sometimes 2 is a crowd

Since the Huet signing I've thought a lot about what the next move would be. See the thing is this, not all tandems work in the NHL. In fact, there hasn't been many that have at all. That being said, I honestly don't think starting the season with Huet and Khabibulin is a good choice for Mr. Tallon. Tying that much money into goaltending alone is a bad choice.

The reason alot of tandems don't work is because for the most part goaltenders have never had to compete for a number 1 job. What I'm saying is, a number 1 goalie for most of his hockey playing life probably has been the number 1 guy. Most of them are great in pressure situations but once they have to compete for their job, its a different story. I called this the Jose Theodore effect. Jose played like a star in Montreal until Huet came along and started doing well, once he was shipped to Colorado he also had pressure coming from Peter Budaj. Last season once the Avs' basically handed Jose the starting job he once again excelled and took on the role like they expected him to and in my eyes deserved the comeback player of the year award. (if that exsisted)

There has been some great tandems in the NHL's history. Some that immediately come to mind are Mike Vernon/Chris Osgood, Mike Richter/John Vanbiesbrook, Grant Fuhr/Andy Moog, also Grant Fuhr/Bill Ranford, Eddie Bower/Terry Sawchuck, couple of more recent tandems that excelled have been J.S. Giguere/Ilya bryzgalov, and Ryan Miller/Martin Biron. And for the Blackhawks fans, hindsight shows us a tandem of Eddie Belfour and Dominik Hasek, although Hasek was merely a backup then.

I've read some rumors about some other plans the Hawks could be looking at instead of trading Khabibulin. Frankly, I haven't seen one I liked. First one I seen was trying to trade Robert Lang. Lang and Khabibulin both have 1 year remaining on their contracts, all you have to do is ask yourself who you would rather have around this season between these 2. We've already got a good goalie who last season not only carried a team into the playoffs but then got traded to another team and basically put them into the playoffs. Robert Lang is the type of player young teams bring in to teach, mentor and keep the young kids under wrap, all the while scoring 20-25 goals. So why would Tallon get rid of him? Another piece of trade-bait I've heard being thrown around is Cam Barker. Same thing applies here, Barker to me could end up being better then Duncan Keith and this to me is the season I believe he is going to break out. Out of the 2 right now I'd have to say bye to Barker if I had to choose between him and Lang, only because the Hawks defence is looking good and with the youth it's only gonna get better.

Don't get me wrong, as soon as I seen the Huet signing I was very happy, as Tallon signed a better younger goalie for 1 million less the what Khabibulin gets paid, but to me it only looks like a "great" move if they can get rid of Khabibulin. I do think that before the season starts though, we will see the end of the Bulin-wall and emergence of the Cristo-wall

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